Dee Brown joins Fighting Illini basketball staff in new role

Illinois has added former Illini star Dee Brown to coach John Groce's staff.

Groce said Wednesday that Brown will be the team's director of player development and alumni relations. In the newly created position Brown will provide what Groce calls off-court guidance for players and help with on-campus recruiting and other activities.

Groce praised Brown's role as a player mentor and said he has a future as a coach.

Brown spent the past year as a special assistant to the athletic director.

Brown was part of the 2005 Illini team that lost the national title game to North Carolina. He played as a professional for 10 seasons.

Groce did not link Brown's hire directly to off-court problems but three Illini players have been arrested this year.