|Hawaii's Colt Brennan 'knocked out cold' in game, but hopeful of playing Friday|
|Written by Admin|
|Monday, 12 November 2007 13:59|
``I'll be out there and ready to play,'' he said, after sitting out practice Monday.
Warriors coach June Jones, however, said his record-breaking quarterback will be a game-time decision.
``I've talked to a bunch of specialists,'' Jones said. ``It's a little more complicated than it used to be, when they give some smelling salts and they send you back in. We'll do what's best for him.''
Brennan suffered a mild concussion in Hawaii's 37-30 victory over Fresno State that kept the Warriors undefeated at 9-0 and their BCS hopes alive.
He is also expected to be sidelined Tuesday as well. The team also practices Wednesday before flying to Reno in the afternoon for its game Friday.
The senior said he's had no symptoms from the concussion and feels ``normal.''
``I just got to hope that I continue to get better and feel good,'' he said. ``Hopefully Friday, I can get cleared. That's all I'm waiting for.''
Brennan had thrown for 396 yards and two touchdowns against the Bulldogs before leaving with about 11 minutes left in the game. He was flattened by linebacker Marcus Riley near the Bulldogs' sideline while scrambling on third-and-7.
``He hit me solid,'' Brennan said. ``Unfortunately, he hit me right in the head and my head hit the ground and it knocked me out cold.''
Brennan laid motionless, face down, as trainers from both teams came to his aid. The near-sellout crowd drew silent and teammates prayed on one knee as the game was halted for about five minutes. Brennan eventually stood up, wincing in pain and was helped off the field into the locker room.
``I didn't see him until the last second. He came in and I tried to get underneath him and we just went helmet-to-helmet,'' Brennan said. ``That's the game. ... Do I think he did it on purpose? Absolutely not. Do I feel any negative feelings toward this guy? Absolutely not.''
However, the injuries to Brennan and Washington's Jake Locker, who suffered a stinger and muscle strain in his neck in a helmet-to-helmet collision Saturday, raises the issue of whether college athletes are adequately protected.
Neither hit was flagged.
In the NFL, contact with a quarterback's helmet - even inadvertent - draws a 15-yard penalty at a minimum, and ejections and possible fines if flagrant. In college football, ejections, are not as common and suspensions are almost unheard of.
Jones said the NFL has set the ground work for the NCAA, by cracking down on helmet-to-helmet contact and helmet-leading hits in recent years.
``We're still not there in college football and (it's) probably going to be somebody's decision to finally draw the line and suspend guys,'' said Jones, a former NFL quarterback and coach.
The Western Athletic Conference on Sunday reviewed the hit on Brennan and determined that a proper no-call was made since the defender made shoulder pad contact before hitting Brennan's helmet.
The Warriors desperately need Brennan for their BCS run.
If Hawaii can escape Nevada with a victory, it will need to defeat No. 17 Boise State and Washington at home to finish 12-0. Hawaii is currently 16th in the BCS standings and needs to finish in the top 12 to secure an automatic berth.
An undefeated season would also go a long way for Brennan's Heisman Trophy chances. Brennan has thrown for 3,216 yards and 28 touchdowns, a year after passing for 5,549 yards and setting a Division I-A record with 58 touchdown passes.
Hawaii and No. 4 Kansas are the only remaining unbeaten teams. The Warriors are off to their best start since 1925 and have won 10 straight, and 19 of their last 20 games.