Colt Brennan, who set several NCAA records and made the University of Hawaii relevant in college football, died on Monday at age 37.
The former Hawaii quarterback was in his fifth month of an “inpatient treatment program” in California when he was found unconscious a few days ago at the rehabilitation facility, Colt’s father, Terry Brennan, told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
“He was doing so well, the spark was back in his eyes, and he was healthy and doing great, and it happened,” Terry Brennan said.
Colt Brennan was surrounded by family when he died at Hoag Hospital in Newport, Calif., his father said.
The years Colt Brennan spent as the Hawaii starting QB are the stuff of legend considering how the University gets treated on a national level in the college football conversation.
Brennan passed for over 4,000 yards twice in 2005 and 2007, but in 2006 he played on a different level.
Brennan threw for 5,549, and he also set the NCAA single-season record for touchdown passes with 58 in 2006. The TD record stood until Joe Burrow broke it in 2019.
He led Hawaii to an undefeated 12-0 season before losing to Georgia in the Sugar Bowl in 2007. He also earned Heisman consideration twice — sixth place in 2006 and third in 2007.
He still holds the FBS record for career completion percentage (70.4). In 2007, he also set the record for most career games with at least 400 yards passing (20), but Graham Harrell and Case Keenum are now tied for that record (21).
Brennan also sits in the Top 5 for career touchdown passes (131) and passing yards per game (373.5).
Sadly, Brennan was never able to make it in any level of professional football. Washington drafted him in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL Draft. Injuries kept him off the NFL field, and he was cut two years later. Brennan never played past the preseason in the NFL.
Off the field, he suffered a traumatic brain injury after a car accident in 2010. Brennan tried to make it with the other football leagues including the USFL, Canadian Football League and Arena Football League, but unfortunately he couldn’t make it stick.