#2 Chris Brenenborg
E-mail: dbrenenborg AT gmail.com
For the past couple years PITT Ultimate has been on my mind. I’ve played with most of the guys for years and they are some of the best guys I know. Coming in I knew I was going to love this team. But it’s more than just a love of the sport or team. We are truly brothers and I would do anything for these guys. We are working very hard towards our goal of being the best conditioned team in college ultimate. We are going to make noise. This is our year.
2010 Callahan nominee
To be a Callahan winner also requires dedication and commitment beyond the norm; a competitive spirit that takes the nominee from one of the best to the best of the best. Chris came to this team a Champion with the 2006 USA Junior Worlds team, along with many of the top players in college today. He started on the O-line as a secondary handler but quickly took over a primary cutting role his sophomore year and beyond. His growth as a player, from Central Catholic High School to Pittsburgh Club and University of Pittsburgh College, has been entirely oriented around his home city. His loyalty to the city is commendable, but it is incredible that Chris continues to improve without the extremely high level Club experience offered in other cities. The perception of Pittsburgh Ultimate (from a Philadelphia bias) has a direct correlation to Chris Brenenborg: from the bent out knee to the high release flicks. Some of you have probably seen the photograph of Chris breaking the mark as a Freshman (http:// tinyurl.com/2748hwa). He has only gotten better; he has equaled or surpassed many of his Junior Worlds teammates, in one category or another. I recall one play against Harvard and George Stubbs, an upwind huck at Roll Call in 2008. Stubbs has inside positioning and speed on his side, but Chris remains a half step ahead for ten yards. The disc loops around, losing momentum in the wind. Stubbs bids first, a hip level bid to a spot where the disc will be. Chris then bids, body with Stubbs but arms reaching across and under, and rips the disc down.
Chris is a two year captain, three year ME All-Region player (safe assumption), and 2006 Freshman of the Year. Chris has played and will play through any obstacle thrown at him. For example, at Nationals for the past three years, Chris played through getting kicked in the back (2007, UNC), dislocating a finger on his throwing hand (2007, Del), sclerosis (every game, ever), a kidney stone (2009, to Quarterfinals), and personal issues I refuse to illuminate. He does not complain; a few of our players don’t even know. I’ve rarely seen a player with more commitment and heart.
To pay him back, he is Pittsburgh’s first ever nominee for Callahan.
Written by Eddie Peters
I’ve been playing with Chris for several years now, both on the college and club levels. There is no doubt the kid is a game changer. No matter who we are playing, or what matchup Chris has, if we need a big play, Chris is involved. Whether he’s hucking it from his own endzone, or ripping down the disc for a goal, calling Chris in the string is a near guaranteed score. And he will frustrate the hell out of his matchups on defense, never letting them get into a comfort zone and really dictating the flow.
And while he’s got some serious natural talent, he works his ass off for the game, too. Every practice and every workout, Chris is leading by example and setting a great tone. He’s a dominating all-around player with a great attitude for the game. I can’t think of what else you could ask for in a Callahan candidate.
Plus, he’s got his own DVD.
Written by Rob Dulabon
I have had the honor of coaching, playing with, and captaining with Chris over the last 6 years and I wanted to bring to light the fact that Chris is not only a game changer (as Rob and Eddie have alluded to), but an inspiration and team changer.
When Chris played for Pittsburgh’s youth club team, Impulse, the team was in its infancy. Even though he was surrounded by players who knew very little about competing at the highest levels, Chris worked, trained, and competed with the highest expectations of himself and his teammates. Chris’s work ethic, skill, and drive were what made playing Impulse fun and challenging for every member of the team. Looking back on the team’s progression, I do not think Impulse would be competing for a National Championship each summer without the inspiration Chris provided. He makes everyone around him into a better player and, because of this, has been involved in developing Pittsburgh’s talent in high school and college for many years.
In college, I was able to play 3 years with Chris.
I remember always telling freshman to try and treat each year as if it were their last – hoping that they would find a way to value every second they had with PITT. I have never seen a first year player actually pull it off other than Chris. In his first year, Chris was a major contributor to a national-level program, but that wasn’t what made it amazing. Every second of that year I saw how driven Chris was towards winning and towards improvement. He was a leader from the moment he stepped on to the practice field. I remember Chris’s work ethic when he made team USA and practiced 6 days a week for club and youth club. I remember his unbelievable cutting on Impulse when some of the best high school players in the country were keying in on only him. I remember his growth into a leader and star on PITT. But more than all of that, I know that Chris cares deeply about this sport and our team at PITT. There is no doubt in my mind that Chris would represent the Callahan award in terms of skill, athleticism, and game changing ability, but his drive and the way it impacts his teammates and his city sets him apart. Very proud of you, buddy. Keep pushing PITT forward.
Written by Nick Kaczmarek
2009 Metro East 1st Team All-Region
-Written by Eddie Peters
2008 Metro East All-Region
-Written by Ben Banyas on RSD
Chris Brenenborg: (Pitt) In our semi final against Pitt, he was the
-Written by Keegan on RSD
2007 Metro East Freshman of the Year
-Written by J. Lee on RSD