Kent Brown helped Michael Jordan be “just a dad at a basketball game”


CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — ‘The Last Dance’ documentary featuring Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls has brought many down memory lane, including Illinois Associate Athletic Director Kent Brown. Michael Jordan’s son, Jeffery, played for the Illini from 2007 to 2010, and Brown was in charge of helping Michael Jordan facilitate his trips to Champaign.

“Being someone who followed the Bulls through that period, and knowing the championships and how popular Michael was, and knowing he was really the greatest of all time, it wasn’t lost on me that how special a moment that was to be able to meet with him,” says Kent. “I can tell you that every time when his name would pop up on my phone, your heart skips a little bit of a beat, and then we just handled our business.”

Brown said they had to obtain a special NCAA waiver to allow Jordan to park inside the tunnel of (formerly know as) Assembly Hall, to avoid fans and media from bombarding him.

“Our goal when he came to our games was that he could be just like a dad, who was coming to watch his son play, and come in and enjoy it,” says Brown. “I think we accomplished that.”

Brown had many several interactions with Jordan, and jokes that MJ often times called him ‘my friend’.

“When he called me his friend I felt like we were really tight, knowing the reality was I was just there to facilitate things,” says Brown. “But having him through here various times was fun, it was exciting, and I hope that Michael enjoyed his visits here”

WCIA 3’s Marlee Wierda spoke more with Kent Brown, about this interactions with the NBA great. You can watch their full interview here.

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