Junior San Clemente quarterback Brendan Costello steps on stage

Jacob Rayburn, Publisher
Cardinal Sports Report


Brendan Costello (San Clemente High, San Clemente, Calif.) took in Stanford’s victory over UCLA and watched his namesake, KJ Costello, lead the Cardinal to a victory. There is no relation between the two Costellos, although they overlapped for one year at Santa Margarita.

Brendan is now the starting quarterback at San Clemente, after a brief stop at Mission Viejo, where Joey Yellen won the job after he transferred from St. John Bosco. Mission Viejo is now top 10 in the state. San Clemente is undefeated with Costello at quarterback and is in the top 15 in the state.

The quarterback transfer carousel in Southern California can be dizzying, but Costello has landed on his feet.

“It’s going great,” the junior said. “San Clemente has a really good quarterback history. It’s a great school and I love the coaches. It’s a beautiful town, too. It’s a great community and it’s really fun being there.

“It’s great to be the starter and be able to show what I have to college coaches. It’s really awesome. It’s great to be in the position I am in at San Clemente.”

According to Maxpreps, through six games Costello has thrown 1,177 yards with a 63 percent completion percentage and has 16 touchdowns to one interception. He also has rushed 53 times for 224 yards.

The team’s leading rusher is Austin Whitsett, who has a preferred walk-on offer from Stanford.

Costello started this semester with a 4.5 GPA, so his book smarts are proven. He knows he has to be just as sharp off the field to succeed as a 6-foot tall quarterback.

“I think I have a lot to work on with the mental part of the game,” Costello said. “That’s most of the game, to be honest. I’m not the biggest kid on the field, so being sharp mentally is a big deal because I’m not 6-4 or 6-5.”

The recruiting process hasn’t really started yet for Costello, who saw very limited playing time his first two years of high school. Visiting Stanford for the UCLA game was really his first experience as a recruit taking in a game.

He was able to speak with several of the coaches, including area recruiters Peter Alamar and Mike Bloomgren. An experience that stood out was a panel of athletes, including several from other sports and even some alumni offered some answers.

Former Cardinal safety Ed Reynolds shared with the recruits: “He told a cool story that he was at a fraternity party his freshman year and he met a guy who two years later was making millions of dollars off Snapchat. The connections at Stanford are crazy.”

Washington and Washington State have also invited the quarterback to visit for games and Baylor has started reaching out as well, according to Costello.

“I don’t think about it,” Costello said of recruiting. “I just have to worry about taking each week one at a time and all that college stuff will take care of itself.”

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