UNLV Falls To Hawaii, 49-14
Sept. 15, 2007
LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Colt Brennan's right ankle was swollen and discolored.
It didn't stop him from running for three touchdowns and passing for two more to lead 24th-ranked Hawaii to an easy 49-14 victory over UNLV on Saturday night.
Brennan said he twisted his ankle "screwing around" before practice on Friday. He said he received a shot on Saturday morning but didn't entertain the possibility of sitting out because he had more than 100 family and friends on hand.
"I wanted to make a statement," Brennan said. "There was no way I wasn't going to come out and play this game. They'd have to cut my leg off for me not to come out and play.
"I knew if I shot it up and I came out here hobbling around with one foot and just made plays, it would do a lot for the team," Brennan said. "And that's what I tried to do."
Brennan completed 26-of-32 passes for 298 yards in three quarters, setting an NCAA record by passing for more than 200 yards for the 29th straight time.
Hawaii (3-0) cleared a minor hurdle in what it hopes will be a journey to a Bowl Championship Series game.
The Warriors may have needed an impressive victory. They dropped four rungs in The Associated Press Top 25 after holding off Louisiana Tech in overtime a week ago.
Hawaii's supporters, many of whom flocked to the desert, will note that UNLV (1-2) threw a scare into then-No. 5 Wisconsin on the same field last week.
The Warriors completed a two-game, 12-day road trip that began in Ruston, La. Instead of making the long and costly journey back to the islands, Hawaii spent last week in Houston, practicing at Rice University.
"I really felt these two road (games) were going to be a catalyst for our season," Hawaii coach June Jones said.
Early on, the Warriors appeared a little weary. After the Hawaii offense uncharacteristically went three-and-out on its first possession, the Rebels jumped ahead 7-0 with a 13-play, 79-yard march. Travis Dixon hit Frank Summers for a 4-yard touchdown.
Hawaii dominated from that point.
The Warriors responded with an 11-play, 67-yard drive led by Brennan, who went 5-for-5 for 45 yards and scored on a 1-yard sneak. Four minutes later, Brennan sneaked in from a yard out to make it 14-7.
Brennan's 13-yard pass to Ryan Grice-Mullen made it 21-7 midway through the second quarter.
UNLV coach Mike Sanford praised Brennan. "I think he's excellent," Sanford said. "He's a very efficient quarterback."
Hawaii's defense has been derided, but it shut down the Rebels and redshirt freshman quarterback Travis Dixon after UNLV's opening drive. Midway through the third quarter, Hawaii cornerback Ryan Mouton intercepted a Dixon pass and returned it 40 yards for a touchdown.
Brennan scored his third touchdown on a 3-yard option keeper to put the Warriors ahead 28-7 early in the third quarter.
Brennan hit Jason Rivers for a 1-yard score to give Hawaii a 35-7 lead late in the third quarter.
Hawaii coach June Jones removed Brennan after three quarters, two yards shy of extending his streak of 14 straight games with at least 300 passing yards.
Hawaii will play host to Charleston Southern, a member of the Football Championship Subdivision, formerly known as Division I-AA. The Warriors make only three more regular-season trips to the mainland -- at Idaho Sept. 29, at San Jose State Oct. 12 and at Nevada Nov. 16.