Dru Brown
Ottawa Redblacks
Brown with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2022
Born: (1997-03-21) March 21, 1997 (age 26)
Palo Alto, California, U.S.
Career information
StatusActive
CFL statusAmerican
Position(s)Quarterback
Height5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight200 lb (91 kg)
CollegeSan Mateo (2015)
Hawaii (2016–2017)
Oklahoma State (2018–2019)
High schoolLos Gatos
(Los Gatos, California)
NFL draft2020 / Undrafted
HandRight
Career history
As player
20202023Winnipeg Blue Bombers
2024–presentOttawa Redblacks
Career highlights and awards
Career stats
Passing completions102
Passing attempts153
Passing yards1,484
TDINT14–2
Rushing Yards113
Rushing touchdowns5

Dru Brown (born March 21, 1997) is an American gridiron football quarterback for the Ottawa Redblacks of the Canadian Football League (CFL). He played college football at Oklahoma State and Hawaii.

College career

Brown did not start until his senior season of high school and did not receive any Division I offers.[1] He attended the College of San Mateo in his freshman year, playing in 11 games, and completed 104 of 194 passes for 1,870 yards and 21 touchdowns.[2] He then transferred to Hawaii Rainbow Warriors for the 2016 season.

Hawaii

2016

After not playing in Hawaii's first three games, Brown entered the Rainbow Warriors fourth game against the Arizona Wildcats in the second half, replacing Ikaika Woolsey. Brown was able to direct the Rainbow Warriors to three touchdown drives in the second half, but they lost to Arizona 47–28.[3] He was named the starting quarterback before the Rainbow Warriors match against Nevada Wolf Pack.[4] Against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders in the 2016 Hawaii Bowl, he threw for 274 yards and four touchdowns while also accounting for a rushing touchdown en route to a 52–35 victory.[5] He was also named one of the game's most valuable player for his efforts.

2017

Coming off of Hawaii's first bowl victory in ten years, Brown was once again named the starting quarterback for the 2017 season. He threw for 2,785 yards and 18 touchdowns that season on a struggling Rainbow Warriors team that lost nine of the last ten games, mostly attributed to a battered offensive line whose position coach left mid-way through the season, and top receiver John Ursua lost to a torn anterior cruciate ligament.[6] After the 2017 season, he announced his intention to transfer,[7] enrolled at Oklahoma State as a graduate transfer, and was immediately eligible to play.[8] He finished his career at Hawaii with 5,273 career passing yards and 37 touchdowns.[9]

Oklahoma State

2018

At Oklahoma State, Brown joined a crowded QB room competing for the Cowboys starting quarterback job following the departure of the four-year starter Mason Rudolph.[10] Brown was named the primary back-up quarterback to the starter Taylor Cornelius before the start of 2018 season.[11] Despite playing in the Cowboys' 2018 Liberty Bowl, Brown was able to redshirt under the NCAA's new redshirt policy and keep his final year of eligibility.

2019

Following Cornelius' graduation and departure, Brown was one of the favorites to win the starting quarterback job, competing for it with redshirt freshman Spencer Sanders. Brown was once again named the primary back-up as Sanders was named the starting quarterback for the Cowboys' season opener against the Oregon State Beavers.[12]

After Sanders suffered a hand injury in the middle of a game against the Kansas Jayhawks, Brown entered the game in relief and threw a touchdown pass on his first play.[13] He finished the game with 3 completions on 5 attempts for 70 yards and a touchdown in the 31–6 victory.[14] He started his first career game as a Cowboy against the West Virginia Mountaineers the following week, where he racked up 196 yards and two touchdowns in a 20–13 victory.[15] For his performance against West Virginia, he was named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Week.[16]

Statistics

Season Games Passing Rushing
GP Record Comp Att Pct Yards Avg TD Int Rate Att Yards Avg TD
San Mateo Bulldogs
2015 11 7–4 104 194 53.6 1,879 9.7 21 8 162.4 63 188 3.0 6
Hawaii Rainbow Warriors
2016 13 7–4 209 335 62.4 2,488 7.4 19 7 139.3 88 306 3.5 4
2017 12 3–9 254 412 61.7 2,785 6.8 18 8 129.0 58 7 0.1 2
Oklahoma State Cowboys
2018 1 0–0 0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0.0 0
2019 7 1–2 72 107 67.3 810 7.6 7 1 150.6 23 6 0.3 1
Career 44 18−19 639 1,048 58.1 7,962 8.4 65 24 149.1 132 507 3 13

Professional career

Winnipeg Blue Bombers

Following his college career, Brown was added to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers roster on March 11, 2020.[17] However, he did not play in 2020 due to the cancellation of the 2020 CFL season. In 2021, he was the fourth string quarterback and spent most of the year on the practice roster.[18] However, after the Blue Bombers clinched first place, Brown dressed in his first professional game on November 13, 2023, against the Montreal Alouettes.[18] He played in the final two regular season games in 2021, where he completed seven of 14 pass attempts for 49 yards.[18] He did not dress in either of the team's post-season games and was on the practice roster for the team's 108th Grey Cup championship over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.[18]

During the first game of the 2022 Winnipeg Blue Bombers season, Brown came in to the game late in the fourth quarter to complete a game-winning field goal drive. He entered the game after starting quarterback Zach Collaros was pulled from play by injury spotters after he took a hit to the head.[19] During the 2023 Winnipeg Blue Bombers season, Brown again took over the offence after Collaros left the game with an upper body injury after a high hit during a week 9 game against the Edmonton Elks. He brought the Bombers back from a 22 point deficit throwing for 307 yards and four touchdowns as the Bombers beat the Elks 38-29.[20] He made two starts in 2023, winning both of them, and set a new CFL record for the most touchdown passes (9) without recording an interception.[21]

Ottawa Redblacks

As a pending free agent, Brown's playing rights were traded to the Ottawa Redblacks on January 18, 2024, in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the 2024 CFL Draft.[22] On January 24, 2024, it was announced that Brown had signed a two-year contract, with a minimum $286,000 plus $54,000 in playtime incentives in 2024, and a minimum $355,000 plus $45,000 in playtime incentives in 2025.[23]

Career statistics

Regular season

Year Team Games Passing Rushing
GP GS Record Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A TD Int Rtg Att Yds Y/A TD
2020 WPG Season cancelled
2021 WPG 2 0 0–0 7 14 50.0 49 3.5 0 0 58.3 7 44 6.3 0
2022 WPG 18 1 0–1 33 50 66.0 452 9.0 5 2 111.4 19 39 2.1 3
2023 WPG 18 2 2–0 62 89 69.7 983 11.0 9 0 139.9 11 30 2.7 2
CFL Career 38 3 2–1 102 153 66.7 1,484 9.7 14 2 123.1 37 113 3.1 5

References

  1. ^ Wright, Scott (November 29, 2019). "Betting on Brown: Cowboy quarterback Dru Brown gambled on his own talent in journey to OSU". The Oklahoman. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  2. ^ "Dru Brown #2 QB San Mateo". California Community College Athletic Association. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  3. ^ "Dawkins, Taylor lead Arizona past Hawaii 47–28". ESPN. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  4. ^ "Dru Brown named No. 1 quarterback". Hawaii Warrior World. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  5. ^ "Hawaii rallies to beat Middle Tennessee 52–35 in Hawaii Bowl". ESPN. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  6. ^ "Dru Brown's roommate at Hawaii offers insight into the mind of OSU's new quarterback". The Oklahoman. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  7. ^ "'Bows starting quarterback Dru Brown to transfer from program". Hawaii News Now. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
    - "Hawaii QB Dru Brown Decides To Transfer". Mountain West Wire. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  8. ^ "Hawai'i QB Dru Brown to transfer to Oklahoma State, eligible for '18". ESPN. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  9. ^ "Graduate Transfer QB Dru Brown Enrolls at Oklahoma State". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  10. ^ "Oklahoma State Adds Hawaii QB Grad Transfer Dru Brown". SBNation. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  11. ^ "Notebook: Gundy names Brown backup quarterback, expects Sinor to return against Texas Tech". The O'Colly. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  12. ^ "Spencer Sanders to start at Oregon State". 247 Sports. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  13. ^ "Dru Brown Turned a Little into A Lot". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  14. ^ "Hubbard, Stoner lead No. 25 Oklahoma St. past Kansas 31–6". ESPN. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  15. ^ "Brown, Hubbard lead No. 22 Oklahoma State over WVU 20–13". ESPN. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  16. ^ "Dru Brown Named Big 12 Newcomer of the Week". Oklahoma State University Athletics. Retrieved 17 August 2020.
  17. ^ "Bombers add DB Damian Swann, QB Dru Brown". CFL.ca. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  18. ^ a b c d "Game Notes" (PDF). Canadian Football League. Retrieved November 24, 2023.
  19. ^ Judy Owen (June 10, 2022). "Liegghio hits late field goal to lift Blue Bombers past Redblacks in season opener". CBC Sports.
  20. ^ Shane Jones (August 11, 2023). "Bombers storm back from 22-point deficit to hand Elks 22nd straight home loss". CBC Manitoba. The Canadian Press.
  21. ^ "Zach Collaros: in right situation, Dru Brown could be best QB in CFL". 3DownNation. November 22, 2023.
  22. ^ "Redblacks acquire rights to QB Dru Brown from Bombers". Ottawa Redblacks. January 18, 2024.
  23. ^ "Dru Brown signs two-year deal with Ottawa Redblacks, eager to 'lead team'". Ottawa Sun. January 24, 2024.