First Assistant Coach
A product of San Jose State University, CJ Brown was selected first overall by the Fire in the 1998 MLS Supplemental Draft and made an immediate impact, appearing in 17 games during the club’s inaugural season while helping the Fire to the domestic “double” winning that year’s MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup titles. During his 13-year playing career with the Men in Red, Brown also captured three additional U.S. Open Cup championships in 2000, 2003 and 2006 as well as the 2003 MLS Supporters Shield.
Brown is currently the Fire’s all-time leader in competitive appearances (372), starts (364) and minutes (32,568). On May 9, 2012, Brown was inducted into the club’s Hall of Fame, known as the Ring of Fire.
The Hayward, CA product began his soccer career with the San Francisco Bay Seals in the USISL D-3 Pro League from 1994 to 1997, where he appeared in 47 matches, helping the lower-league Seals to the semifinals of the 1997 U.S. Open Cup before getting picked by the Fire the following year.
Brown’s consistent performance with the Fire led him to 15 caps with the U.S. Men’s National team, making his debut against Australia on November 6, 1998 during a friendly match. He also appeared in the U.S.’s third-place finish at the 1999 FIFA Confederations Cup.