At first, Brendan was optimistic that the injury was minor, but further tests showed otherwise. "I had an MRI, and I tried to come back in three weeks because they thought it was slightly torn, but it didn't get any better. I had another MRI, and it (labrum) was completely torn on the top end side. I had surgery on September 22nd."
Eight months after that surgery, Brendan is still recovering. "I'm about 80% right now. I went to therapy for about five months, and I'm hoping to be 100% by June."
The 2006 season was to be Brendan's coming out party after playing behind Tyler Sheehan in 2005. Sheehan signed with Bowling Green University and has emerged as the Falcons' #1 quarterback after spring practices. Not only did the shoulder injury eliminate Brendan's junior season, but it has also caused him to miss some camps that would have given him some much needed exposure. He had hoped to attend the recent Elite 11 camp at Penn State. "It was last weekend, but I didn't go. I had a lot of college coaches tell me that unless I was 100%, I shouldn't go. If I went and didn't play very well, a lot of schools would hear about that."
It speaks to Brendan's potential that a number of schools are still showing interest. "I'm hearing from Akron, Miami, OU, and Western Michigan. I've spoken to Tennessee, and I'm going to their camp. Purdue is sending me stuff about their camp. I've talked to Virginia's coach, and UConn sends me a lot of stuff. I'm obviously interested in UC a lot too." Tim Hinton and Kerry Coombs are primarily responsible for Brendan's recruitment to Cincinnati. "They want me to come to their camp, and they want to see game tape next year since I didn't really play last season. It should help that I have three games at UC next year so they can watch me." Brendan and his father watched a Cincinnati spring practice last month.
Jones listed the games he thought he'd be playing at Nippert Stadium. "We open the season against Covington Catholic in the Crosstown Showdown. Then a week or two later we play a team from Georgia in the Herbstreit Challenge, and Moeller is playing their home games there."
Brendan believes he would be a good fit for UC's offense and its need of a dual threat quarterback. "I've always run the ball so I think I could do it." Brendan estimated his forty-yard-dash time to be 4.8 seconds.
Since Brendan missed his entire junior season, he knows videotape of his early season games in 2007 will go a long way in determining whether or not he's offered scholarships, but he's trying not to put too much pressure on himself. "My goal is to play college football so that might add a little pressure, but ultimately, I want to win games for LaSalle so that will be the main focus. I'll be more worried about the college stuff this June when I go to the college camps."
There are several Division IA prospects at LaSalle in addition to DeVier Posey, who has already verbally committed to Ohio State. One of them is linebacker J. K. Schaeffer, who is also one of Brendan's best friends. "He's being recruited by a lot of the same schools that are contacting me. J. K. and I are really good friends. We hang out all the time on the weekends and have been friends for a really long time. If we had the chance to go to the same place, that would be really neat."
Like more and more of the locals, Brendan sees the Bearcat football program as being quite attractive. "To stay around here and go to UC would be really neat. Now that UC is in the Big East they're considered a bigger school because they're not in Conference USA. If you go there and help make the team better, you would have a chance for a BCS bowl."
Jones will be watching Ben Mauk's career at Cincinnati very closely this fall since Ben also is returning from labrum surgery. "I'm interested in seeing how he (Mauk) does since we had the same operation. I also watched a lot of Drew Brees last year because he had that surgery too."
If the recruiting starts to heat up, Brendan says he won't be looking at a school's roster. "I want to go to a place where I'll have a chance to start and compete, but the way I look at it is I don't want anything given to me. I want to earn it. The only thing I might look at is if the starter is a freshman. Obviously I want to play as soon as I can, and I might be more likely to go somewhere else where I'd have a chance to play earlier."
Bearcat Insider will check back with Brendan later in the summer.