AMERICUS - Former Georgia Southwestern men's basketball standout Phillip Brown signed a professional contract on Friday to play for Pays des Olonnes Basket of the French National 2 League.
"This is a great opportunity for me to continue playing basketball," Brown said. "I'm very excited about living in France and living my dream of playing professional basketball."
Brown is scheduled to report in early August and will call the town of Les Sables-d'Olonne on the western coast of France home until season's end.
"I would like to thank the Lord, my family, my coaches and teammates, and everybody else that has supported me and the Hurricanes."
Brown was named the Peach Belt Conference Player of the Year in 2011 while earning All-Conference First Team honors as a member of the Hurricanes. He led the PBC in both rebounding and field goal percentage while coming in second in blocked shots and 11th in scoring.
Brown ranked near the top of D-II in several categories in 2011, as well, including rebounds per game (fifth), field goal percentage (13th) and blocks (21st).
The 6-foot-7 Jonesboro native was the first student-athlete in GSW history to be named an NCAA All-American when he was selected to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) State Farm Coaches' All-America Team in March of 2011. He was named to the 2011-12 Sporting News NCAA Division II Men's Basketball Preseason All-America First Team in September.
Brown posted similar numbers early in his senior campaign averaging 17.3 points and 9.9 rebounds in only 28 minutes of action per contest through 15 games, but his season was cut short by a meniscus injury in January.
In two years at GSW, Brown started 45 games and averaged a double-double (15.3 points, 10. 3 rebounds). He tallied 89 blocks and shot an impressive 62.7 percent from the floor. Brown was named the PBC Player of the Week on four occasions. He recorded 21 double-doubles and scored in double-figures on 38 occasions. In addition, he pulled down double-figure rebounds 23 times.
"I am grateful for everything Phil did for our program the last two years," said GSW head coach Mike Leeder. "We are excited that he has an opportunity to continue his basketball career as a professional and wish him all the best."
Brown graduated with a degree in psychology in the spring of 2011. He was a graduate student during the 2011-12 academic year.
More information should become available on Brown and Pays des Olonnes Basket as the season draws near at www.eurobasket.com