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Commit Recon: Rhode Island lands 7-foot, 255 pound center Javonte Brown

Rams fortify frontcourt with Western Mich. transfer

Credit: Ashley Huss, WMU Photographer

Archie Miller and staff have been transparent about their intent to be judicious in assembling the final pieces of Rhode Island’s 24-25 roster. It’s about fit and complement to existing personnel, not simply talent collection. The aim was to land one more impact transfer.

Today, they got their man.

In need of another physical presence in the post to fortify the forward corps, Rhode Island has secured a commitment from 7-foot, 255 pound center Javonte Brown from Western Michigan (UConn/Texas A&M) after a month-plus courtship.

Last season, Brown averaged 8.8 points, 4.2 boards, and a block in just 16 mins per game while shooting 57.6% from the field. It was his first true season of meaningful action after beginning at UConn, playing sparingly and transferring after assistant coach Kenya Hunter departed, then spending a couple campaigns Texas A&M before moving to the Broncos as a redshirt soph in 23-24.

The Toronto, ON native will be listed as a redshirt junior and has two years of eligibility remaining. URI assistant Duane Woodward was the lead relationship builder with Brown.

Quick take

What can Brown do for U(RI)?

Brown’s brawn in the pivot complements URI’s current front court mix of 6-9, 245 pound David Fuchs, 6-8, 215 pound St. John’s transfer Drissa Traore, and 6-7, 230 pound David Green nicely. Athletic additions Quentin Diboundje (ECU transfer) and Tyonne Farrell (rising freshman) figure into the front court conversation also at the wings.

Brown’s presence provides Miller and Co. additional lineup versatility and the ability to go big as game situations and matchups dictate. Brown also offers a college-experienced layer of physicality and protection should foul trouble limit Fuchs in a given contest.

While not an extraordinary shot-blocker, consider Brown’s block percentage last year of 7.3%, which would’ve ranked first by a wide margin over anyone on last year’s URI team (Tyson Brown led at 4.9%). At 7-0, 255 Brown is plenty imposing to help rim protect and alter shots. This will allow guards to play more aggressively on ball — as he helps clog the lane and deter would-be dribble penetration.

On the glass, Mr. Brown will factor. He corralled offensive boards on 12.9% of his own teammates misfires (would’ve ranked first on the Rams a year ago) and on the defensive end he snared it 17.1% of the time (would’ve ranked third on the Rams).

He’s an efficient scorer in the post and provides another paint touch entry point. He’ll need to improve his stamina and conditioning, caretaking, free throw percentage (.532) and tendency to collect fouls of his own — but there’s plenty to like about the blend of skills he brings to Kingston.

What’s next?

More patience by Miller and staff. Don’t be surprised to see at least one of the final two remaining scholarships left open indefinitely and the other used on a clear developmental redshirt piece, absent an unforeseen pivot. The Rams have the crux of their roster from which a rotation will emerge — capping it with a needed piece in Brown they expect to be impactful in the Atlantic 10.