The Saddleback crowd, students and faculty alike gave a warm welcome to one of its own, Colt Brennan.
The Washington Redskins quarterback, currently on injured reserve came back to Saddleback College, where he and the Gauchos won the 2004 Mission Conference Title.
“It is really neat to come back here and see the Mission Conference Championship up there (on the press box). Through all the turmoil I was enduring when I was here, I really had a great time and we had great football team. It is really humbling to come back here and it’s pretty awesome” Brennan said.
The 2004 Gauchos were ranked No. 3 in the nation according to JCGridiron.com, and had an 11-2 record under Coach McElroy. In the ’04 season Brennan broke major Saddleback records including, 3,395 yards passing, 30 touchdown passes, completion percentage (.650), attempts and completions (238-366).
“Enjoying the game and have an opportunity to play and get a love for the game again. Having great coaches, and the team itself had this special camaraderie, a remember the titans type of team and we all cared for one another” Brennan said.
After the ’04 season Brennan transferred to the University of Hawaii where he went on to break 31 NCAA records, including career touchdown passes with 131, consecutive 200 yard passing games with 34. In 2007 he finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting, falling to Florida’s Tim Tebow. But Brennan did receive 54 first place votes. He was a finalist for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award which is given to the nation’s top senior quarterback and was a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien Award which is given to the Nation’s top quarterback. He earned Associated Press third-team All-American and second-team cnnsi.com All-American honors. He was named Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year and was a first-team All-WAC selection in 2006 and 2007.
Brennan was selected in the 15th round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins, 186th overall.
“I got hurt during training camp and was placed on IR, The Redskins have treated me well and will give me an opportunity next season”
Brennan did see playing time in the 2008 preseason most notably in a preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday Night Football where he got a shot in the third quarter. He completed his first pass to receiver Billy McMillan for a big gain, and three plays later he threw for a 20 yard touchdown pass to Maurice Mann. He finished the game going 9 out of 10 for 123 yards and two touchdowns in the Redskins come from behind victory.
“Each level is significantly different and now a year and a half in I have learned what it takes to succeed in the NFL and I’m anxious to get back out there next season” Brennan said. “I have got used to the game itself and I have figured out what it takes to mature and learn to be a successful player in the NFL”.
Brennan expressed that his time at Saddleback gave him great memories that he will have for the rest of his life. The fans who come out may never know who or what they will see. For Brennan he had no clue what his future had in store for him during his time at Saddleback. Five years later, on injured reserve, he came back to remember the Gauchos.