The Oklahoman Super 30: Stillwater's Gabe Brown learning to be loud on road to Oklahoma State

Scott Wright

STILLWATER — Gabe Brown isn’t the loud type

The Stillwater High linebacker is more of a speak-softly-and-hit-hard kind of guy. 

“He’s super-polite,” Stillwater coach Tucker Barnard said. “He’s a no-nonsense kind of guy. He’s not one that’s messing around a lot. He’s just all about business.

“He’s a great kid with a great personality. I don’t think he’s shy or any of that kind of thing. He’s just quiet with a worker mentality.”

But he’s learning to be loud.

“I’ve always been more of a quiet introvert,” he said. “So I’m trying to work on my communication skills and be more outspoken. Because Luke McEndoo, he was basically the vocal leader every year he was here, and for him to be gone is weird and kind of different.”

Stillwater High School linebacker Gabe Brown is No. 12 on The Oklahoman's Super 30 recruit rankings.

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At middle linebacker for the Pioneers, Brown makes defensive play calls, so teammates are used to hearing his voice. But this year, he wants them to hear it more, and in different situations, as he becomes a senior leader for the defense.

“It’s a little awkward at some times,” Brown said. “But I’m getting used to it and it’s getting better every day.”

Brown’s talent and work ethic make him ideal for the leadership role. Rated No. 12 on The Oklahoman’s Super 30 recruit rankings for the 2022 class, Brown is committed to Oklahoma State — one of seven in-state players heading to OSU next season

The Cowboys see Brown as an outside linebacker, because of his speed. And he has room to add more muscle to his 6-foot-3, 205-pound frame. 

Stillwater High School linebacker Gabe Brown is No. 12 on The Oklahoman's Super 30 recruit rankings.

“He does everything the right way,” Barnard said. “He’s trying to win every sprint. He’s maybe our best worker in the weight room. He checks all the boxes.

“I think he’s coming into his own as a leader. He’s got a lot of confidence in his game, so I would imagine as a senior, you’ll really see that come out in him.”

It’s a critical time for Stillwater to groom a strong leader, having lost several starters from last year’s squad.

“It’s super-important right now,” Barnard said. “Everybody’s looking around at each other, figuratively, and figuring out who’s gonna be the next guy who steps up and takes charge.

“Gabe is a natural guy for that role on the defensive side of the ball because of the way he plays and because of the position he plays.”

Having lived in Stillwater since the fourth grade, Brown calls it a “dream” to get to play at OSU.

“At first, I didn’t really think I was gonna go to OSU,” Brown said. “I was in contact and texting the coaches a little bit. Then about a month or two later, they called me and offered me a scholarship. I honestly knew right away that I wanted to go there, so it didn’t really matter what else happened at that point. I knew I wanted to go to OSU.”

The Oklahoman’s 2022 Super 30

Name: Gabe Brown | School: Stillwater

Super 30 ranking: No. 12

Height: 6-foot-3 | Weight: 205 pounds

Position: Linebacker

Committed to: Oklahoma State

About the series

The Oklahoman’s Super 30 feature series will spotlight each high school football player on the Super 30 recruit rankings for the 2022 class. The series continues Friday with No. 12, Stillwater’s Gabe Brown. See No. 11 on the list in Saturday’s editions of The Oklahoman. Here are the last five players we’ve featured:

No. 16: Dontierre Fisher, RB, Checotah 

No. 15: Mason Gilkey, WR, Pawhuska

No. 14: Jaleel Johnson, DE, Putnam City North

No. 13: Cade McConnell, OL, Choctaw

No. 12: Gabe Brown, LB, Stillwater