This Maryland high school player profiles series is presented by the U.S. Army.
By Liz O’Connell, CountySportsZone.com
Eric Browner Jr. made an impressive debut for the REACH! Partnership School track team this year. The senior jumped right into a title his first year of track — literally.
Browner had always played football and basketball, but for his senior year, he moved from basketball to the indoor track team. Head coach Shannon Furdak talked with the football coach about recruiting Browner for the track team.
“I got him on the team because he was fast,” Furdak said.
But he was more than just fast. Browner won a state title for high jump during the indoor track season. He jumped and cleared 6 feet at the MPSSAA Class 1A championship.
Furdak explained that during his first practice he naturally jumped over the 6-foot mark. He cleared 6 feet, 2 inches. He was humble about it and wanted to continue to learn and improve.
Browner shined as a leader for the team even though it was only his first year. He took initiative by making sure the underclassmen were in lines for drills and quiet while coaches were talking to the team. He pushed the team to improve individually because he wanted them to go to states with him.
His confidence grew and was evident during outdoor track season, which was shut down after two weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He helped his teammates even though he was new to track himself and he even cheered on runners from other high schools.
Browner became a recruiter himself after originally being convinced by Furdak to join the track team. He encouraged other teammates from football and basketball to join him.
“I wish I had him all four years,” Furdak said. “But he made the one year count.”