Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Omar Brown, a member of the Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl XLVII Super Bowl champion team, came home to Moncks Corner this weekend.
Brown, a 2008 Berkeley High School graduate and a football standout, was in town over the weekend, honored by the community and a parade through town sponsored by Heart to Heart Ministries.
“It’s just good to be back,” Brown said with a boyish smile that reminded people of the young boy coming out of the Kitfield community who roamed the Park and Recreation football fields growing up.
Brown was decked out in a gray suit with a hint of Ravens purple in the shirt and tie. “They told me about this a couple weeks ago and I wasn’t sure they were going to be able to make it happen, but they did,” he said. “This is great. This is awesome.”
Brown said the Super Bowl was unlike anything he’d experienced before.
“I was on my way to the dome and I thought, this is the Super Bowl and I’m going to the Super Bowl, anything can happen,” he said. “Then in the third quarter the lights went out and I thought, yeah, that’s right, anything really can happen.”
The whole New Orleans experience was something out of a dream for Brown and his family.
“We were at the Super Bowl,” Stella McKelvey, Omar’s mother said. “This has been an incredible journey for Omar, and all of us. It had its ups and downs and it was a difficult journey, but this shows that God is good. Omar’s story is God’s story …
“God is at work here.”
Brown’s story plays out like an improbable Disney movie script: Local high school football star after a memorable career at a mid-level college football program awaits the next opportunity. He attends all the football combines and lets his skills and resume do the talking.
The draft comes and goes, and then Brown hears from the Baltimore Ravens. There’s an invitation on the table to come to summer training camp with a shot to make the team.
Brown jumps at the opportunity.
“That’s all it’s about,” he said. “Taking advantage of the opportunities made available to you while doing the hard work. You work hard, you do what’s expected of you, and when the opportunities arise, you take advantage of them.”
Brown made the most of the training camp invitation opportunity, earning a spot on the Ravens’ practice squad as the regular season began in September.
He saw action in preseason and caught the attention of several coaches and even players.
Ravens defensive back Ed Reed said Brown reminded him of himself during his younger days, and that’s a big time compliment coming from a future NFL Hall of Famer.
Brown spent the season’s first three months on the practice squad, and in November, because of a rash of injuries among the Ravens’ defensive secondary, another opportunity presented itself.
And Brown took full advantage of it.
“I was activated in November and made the most of my opportunity,” he said. “I remained active throughout the playoffs and you saw where we wound up. Joe (Flacco) made some unbelievable plays out there.”
Brown didn’t get to play in the Super Bowl, but he was on the sidelines, and held the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
Not many former Berkeley Stags can say that.
For the spring, Brown is back to work, living in Baltimore, preparing for training camp.
“There are no guarantees,” he said. “Every day you’re fighting for your job. Every day you have to go out and work like it’s your last day here.”
Brown said he will get his Super Bowl ring sometime in April.
“This is something they can’t ever take away from me,” he said. “I am a Super Bowl Champion. I can’t believe it, but with hard work and dedication and solid work ethic, anything can happen… anything.”
Omar Brown, Super Bowl Champion.
He wears the clothes nicely.