QB Brennan WAC's top preseason player
By Stephen Tsai
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Stephen Tsai
The forecast calls for a bright season for University of Hawai'i quarterback Colt Brennan.
The Sporting News yesterday named Brennan as the Western Athletic Conference's Preseason Offensive Player of the Year.
UH left slotback Davone Bess, left tackle Tala Esera and defensive right end Ikaika Alama-Francis also joined Brennan on the 2006 Preseason All-WAC team.
"It's nice to be honored," said Brennan, who joined UH as a third-year sophomore last August. "It's a good motivational factor. It's good for the team. But we can't get too caught up in these things."
Despite not starting UH's first two games in 2005 and enduring season-long injuries to both shoulders, Brennan led the nation in passing yards (4,301), total offense (371.2 yards per game) and touchdown passes (35).
In January, Brennan received a football scholarship.
"Preseason honors don't mean anything except it gives you closure for last season," Brennan said. "Preseason rankings are for the fans. It gets them ready and thinking about the season and what they're going to look for. You know the saying: the only rankings that mean anything are the end-of-the-season accolades."
UH coach June Jones said he expects Brennan to receive those honors, too.
"I think he's one of the best quarterbacks in the country, if not one of the top two," Jones said. "He was learning our system last year, and he was No. 1 in a lot of areas. I would anticipate he'll take a great jump. His confidence is much higher than it was last year. He'll have another great year."
In the meantime, Jones and Reggie Torres, who was named Kahuku High School's football coach last month, said yesterday's lunch strengthened ties between their programs.
During a news conference two years ago, Jones accused Siuaki Livai, who was Kahuku's coach at the time, of steering his best players to Mainland schools.
Last month, a rapprochement was engineered when Jones attended a testimonial dinner for Livai. Jones and Torres had not met until that night.
"It's a new beginning," Jones said. "It was a very positive meeting. Kahuku has great kids, and hopefully we'll continue to get players from there. And I'm hoping Reggie has a great career over there."
Torres said: "The funny thing was, we looked at each other and we thought, 'There's never been been a problem between our programs.' We've never lost contact with some of their coaches. Our former players, like (UH safety) Leonard Peters, always help our kids. Our relationship never dwindled. (The lunch) reaffirmed that."
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