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BREAKING: Jordan Brown is Back at Memphis



Jordan Brown is back at Memphis. (Image Credit: Memphis Athletics)

BREAKING: The Memphis basketball program received yet another piece of mid-season news, as center Jordan Brown is set to return to the program, per Hitmen Hoops. He is expected to participate in all team activities going forward.

Brown, who has not played since a December 2nd loss to Ole Miss, averaged 6.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game in 13.6 minutes a contest. The 2022-23 Lou Henson Award winner had seen his minutes decline after poor play. He made five starts for the Tigers this season.

Brown left the program due to a reported “illness.” However, sources tell Hitmen Hoops that Brown left the Memphis program on December 8th due to frustrations over his role. After his departure, head coach Penny Hardaway reiterated to the media that he was ill.

So, what took place behind the scenes that led to Jordan Brown’s return to the program?

Player’s Only Meeting

Jordan Brown recently attended a player’s only meeting that discussed his potential return to the program. Penny Hardaway has wanted Brown back with the program since his departure. However, the same does not go for the players.

Reports from the meeting state that it was “awkward,” with “only a few” players wanting Brown back with the program.

Despite Memphis having a 4-1 record in conference play, a 15-3 overall record, and a #10 national ranking, the team has struggled as of late. The staff believed adding a player of Brown’s caliber would help Memphis’ depth in the frontcourt, with them “getting what they wanted” with his return to the program. Brown would offer competition for starter Malcolm Dandridge at the center position and another body in the frontcourt. Another mid-season addition, Nae’Qwan Tomlin, has struggled with foul trouble in his time on the court.

The staff pulled the trigger on the move after the Tigers’ loss to USF.

Memphis’ Struggles

Memphis has seen struggles both on and off the court in recent weeks. The Tigers are coming off a loss to South Florida, a team with losses to Central Michigan, Maine, Hofstra, and UMass. They also had close wins against Tulsa, SMU, and UTSA this month.

Off the court, locker room issues have plagued the Tigers. Penny Hardaway admitted this himself in the post-game press conference against USF.

“There’s so much going on that you can’t play certain groups together.”

The return of Brown, a decision players and coaches disagreed on, may not help the apparent team chemistry issues going on at the moment.

With Memphis being “the hunted” in the AAC, the Tigers will have to overcome these issues if they hope to reach the heights they want to reach this season.

How Brown Helps

Despite his struggles in a Memphis uniform this season, Jordan Brown certainly has the talent to help the Tigers win games this season. The former Louisiana center won the Lou Henson Award last season as the best mid-major player in college basketball.

Brown averaged 19.3 points and 8.6 rebounds per game last season. The hope for Memphis is that he comes back rejuvenated and adds an important presence in the Tiger frontcourt down the stretch run of the season.

The senior center will add an important presence on the glass and as a post scorer. If he can live up to his preseason expectations, it completely changes the ceiling for Memphis going forward in the AAC and on a national level. Tiger fans can only hope that he does.