Former Auburn quarterback now key player in Atlanta-area development
If you drive through booming Midtown Atlanta,
peer into the sky and take note of the construction cranes. Chances are, former Auburn quarterback Brandon Cox has something to do with
one of them.
“There are 20-plus cranes in Midtown alone and 95 percent of those are working on apartment high-rises,” says Cox, now an investment analyst at the Daniel Corporation’s Atlanta office. “There are pockets of growth everywhere, but Midtown has been really hot with multi-family units. With that growth, the demand for new office space is going to increase real soon.”
Cox, who earned his B.S. in Business Administration at Harbert College in 2007, spends his time calling plays, and possibly a few audibles, for one of the nation’s largest developers. Cox searches for new projects to develop, whether it is land to turn into office buildings or mixed-use developments, or looking to purchase existing office buildings, renovate them, and re-sell for profit.
“It’s a long process-—interviewing land-owners, figuring out what they want and what they see being developed on their land, as well as what is feasible for that property,” says Cox, who joined the Daniel Corporation in 2016 as a leasing consultant before transitioning to the investment and development side.
A big part, and challenge, of Cox’s duties is making new relationships with land-owners, brokers, tenants, and tenant representatives. “It’s getting out and selling the Daniel story and getting the brokers to know what we
are looking for and for them to spread the word as well,” he says.
Cox spent much of his early career in sales, including seven years at companies in the medical industry. His advice to young sales persons: network, network, network. “It doesn’t hurt to know everybody and anybody,” he
says. “It doesn’t matter where you are or what you are doing during the day—always be selling yourself. It’s
not always what you know, it’s who you know. I’ve seen in multiple times.
“You never know who you’re going to be in an elevator with. Strike up a conversation and that person down the line might remember you and buy your product.”
Cox went 3-0 as Auburn’s starting quarterback against Alabama (2005-07) and has passed for the third-most yards (6,959), touchdowns (42), and completions (550) in school history. But one play—not against the Crimson Tide—remains most memorable.
“It was the fourth down and 10 pass to (Devin) Aromashodu at Georgia,” Cox noted on the 63-yard play with 1:52 remaining that ultimately rallied Auburn to a 31-30 win in 2005. “The replay will be on TV every now and then. I’ll watch it and for some reason my palms still get sweaty and I get nervous—even though I know what is going to happen. To hush a crowd of 90,000 people with one play is pretty spectacular.”
Though Cox isn’t playing competitively any more, he still misses the game … sort of. “As the years go by, I’ve turned into more of a fan,” he says. “I get the urge to go play flag football every now and then with buddies. But now we’re getting to that point where the day after playing a game is not as enjoyable.”