UNH’s Brosmer named CAA Football Rookie of the Week

  • University of New Hampshire quarterback Max Brosmer (16) looks to throw during Saturday’s win over Rhode Island. Brosmer was named the Colonial Athletic Association’s Football Rookie of the Week on Monday after helping lead the Wildcats their first win of the year. MEGHAN MURPHY / UNH Athletics

  • University of New Hampshire quarterback Max Brosmer looks to throw during Saturday’s win over Rhode Island. On Monday, Brosmer was named the Colonial Athletic Association’s Football Rookie of the Week. EARL FROST / UNH Athletics

  • UNH quarterback Max Brosmer looks to throw during Saturday’s win over Rhode Island. EARL FROST / UNH Athletics

Monitor staff
Published: 9/23/2019 5:03:12 PM

On Saturday, freshman quarterback Max Brosmer led the University of New Hampshire football team on a 60-yard drive that led to the game-winning field goal as time expired in UNH’s 27-24 win against Rhode Island. On Monday, the Colonial Athletic Association recognized Brosmer’s efforts by naming him the CAA Football Rookie of the Week.

Brosmer finished the game 12-for-23 passing for 184 yards and two touchdowns, and he also ran for a touchdown. On the final drive, he was 2-for-3 for 47 yards and had two carries for 14 yards, helping to set up the winning field goal from Jason Hughes, giving UNH (1-2) its first win of the season and giving Ricky Santos his first win as New Hampshire’s interim head coach.

“It means a lot,” Santos said of the win during Monday’s CAA coaches’ teleconference. “It’s always tough to get the first one to start a season and always tough to win in this conference. I thought we played extremely well in all three phases for the first time all year.”

Santos wasn’t so pleased with UNH’s inability to put the Rams away. URI (0-3) erased two 14-point deficits during the game, the second one coming with 1:30 left after a Rhode Island field goal tied things at 24-24. After that, the Wildcats took over on their own 28, and three plays later Brosmer scrambled for eight yards on a third-and-4. On the next play, he hit Brian Espanet for a 41-yard gain in the middle of the field to the URI 17 that set up Hughes’s field goal.

“We put our kids in two-minute situations on Sundays and Wednesdays, and we paint the picture of what the scenario is, how many points do we need, is it a field goal or a touchdown, and we constantly want to put those guys in that mindset so if it shows up on Saturday, they have the ability to take a deep breath and execute,” Santos said.

“(Brosmer) did a really good job of taking some underneath throws early on and then getting them in a coverage where we felt like we could get the ball in the middle of the field. He read the defense perfectly and put a good ball on Brian Espanet right there.”

Orchestrating a drive like that will surely help Brosmer and the UNH offense grow.

“Going forward we need to do a better job of putting teams away, we had two 14 point leads that we squandered, but I think it gives us a ton of confidence in our offense that we have the ability to close teams out late,” Santos said.

Brosmer also helped UNH start fast against Rhode Island when he hit senior receiver Malik Love on a deep crossing route on the second play of the game for a 78-yard touchdown.

“To be able to start the game with an explosive play with a senior leader in Malik Love being able to outrun the defense, that give us a ton of spark,” Santos said.

The Wildcats also got a spark during the week of practice leading up the URI game when they were visited by Sean McDonnell, who had to step away as the team’s head coach just before the season began for health reasons.

“Just to see him re-energizes everybody,” Santos said. “He’s the reason myself and all of our players came to a school like UNH, to play for a legendary coach like himself. He means the world to us. He’s why this program is nationally recognized. So just getting him there it built our energy.”

Brosmer and the UNH offense will be tested in their next game when Duquesne comes to Durham on Saturday for a 1 p.m. kickoff. The Dukes (2-1) were an FCS playoff team last year after claiming their third Northeast Conference regular-season title in four seasons.

“They were number one in total defense in their conference last year and they do a good job on special teams. They’re a complete football team and they’re going to play hard,” Santos said. “So for us, it’s continue to progress in the run game and lean on that, and do a little better job than we have in the first couple weeks of making some plays in man coverage.

“They’re going to blitz a little bit and they’re going to match their athletes on the perimeter, so we’re going to have to make some contested catches and some explosive plays in the air.”

(Tim OSullivan can be reached at 369-3341 or tosullivan@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @timosullivan20)



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