On the morning of Wednesday, November 13th, in front of an auditorium filled with family and friends, Waldron High School senior, Payton Brown, signed his letter of intent to play Division 1 basketball at the University of Central Arkansas. D-1 sports is the highest level of college or university athletics in the NCAA. Basketball has been a passion for Brown since the moment he started walking. “My dad played a big part in inspiring me to want to play ball,” explains Brown. “When I was little, I used to watch him play three on three basketball all the time late at night and eventually I was able to be up there with him.”
Payton Brown is the son of Jason and Traci Brown. Although having UCA being close to home played a part in Payton deciding to become a Bear, it was only half of the reason. “I love the coaching staff there. They really just made it feel like home and from the beginning, believed in my coming in and helping them to win.” Brown plans to major in business accounting while at UCA.
Naturally talented in any sport he comes in contact with, Brown has always made playing basketball look effortless. Nearing 2000 career points as a Bulldog, Payton played a big part in helping his team set a school record of 23 wins last season. “I enjoy playing football, baseball, any kind of sport for fun with my family and friends. I also love to hunt and fish, spend time with my family playing games, riding four-wheelers, really anything that involves being outdoors.”
To say that Payton knows he’s blessed would be an understatement. One of the most down to earth and level headed teenagers you will ever meet, Brown’s faith has been the main factor in everything he does. “My faith is what guides me in life because it helps me to step away from what I shouldn’t be around or shouldn’t be doing and it helps me try and set the best example for the kids in grades below me. My faith keeps me grounded in knowing that I can’t take any day for granted.”
Head Coach for the Waldron Bulldogs, Joshua Brown, had this to say about Brown. “Payton has put in countless hours to be the type of player that he is today. I am very proud of him and for him. To earn a full scholarship is a great accomplishment that takes a lot of commitment and hard work and he has done that!”
Payton Brown and the rest of the Bulldogs have a busy basketball schedule ahead of them this year. With conference games against Elkins, Cedarville, West Fork, Charleston, Greenland, Mansfield, and Lincoln, Waldron is more than ready and fully capable of becoming undefeated champions this basketball season.