If you happened to be at the very first practice of this year’s training camp, you may have seen an observer standing at the fence behind the Huskies’ bench on the west side of the stadium. The young man caught a few people’s attention because of his muscular, athletic build. During the afternoon session, that same day, the young man was in uniform and returning punts at the start of practice. One thing that everyone noticed right away was that he was fast. Very fast.
Kenrick Hanna is from the Bahamas and has also attended school, and played football, in Florida. “I played football for a few years in Florida, at South Florida Prep Christian Academy,” Kenrick told Huskie Outsider, following Tuesday evening’s practice, “and I went to school in Miami and played with Miami Northwestern. I also played in the Bahamas – they have tackle football there. The football in the Bahamas is a different quality than here.” He was then asked about the quality of football in Florida. “There are incredible football programs in Florida; it’s very tough and competitive.” Huskie coaches who were asked have said that Kenrick is the fastest player to ever wear a Huskie uniform. By now you are probably curious about just how fast a runner Hanna is. “I ran for the Bahamas national team at the Penn Relays, and I was an all star track athlete.” He was asked what his fastest official times in the 100m and 60m are. “My fastest official time in the 100m is 10.38; my fastest official time in the 60m is a 6.72. I was 19 and 20 years old when I ran those times.” Kenrick was then told that the fairly recent world record in the 60m is 6.28 seconds, shattering the previous mark of 6.39. “Okay, well I’ll get there eventually,” came his reaction. Unsurprisingly, Hanna will also run for the UofS track team this winter.
Kenrick learned of the Huskie football program while in Florida. “I didn’t want to live and play in Florida anymore and I heard that there was a good football program at the UofS. I researched it online and I asked Coach Towriss if he would give me a tryout, and that’s what happened.”
“Kenrick contacted us in the spring, and made an application,” Coach Towriss stated during Tuesday’s practice. “We weren’t sure that he was coming. He is an exceptional athlete with unbelievable speed.” Hanna is currently taking second team reps at cornerback while he gets accustomed to Canadian football. “He’s still learning. He began training camp at running back but we moved him to corner. He’s still raw, but he closes so fast and he sticks his nose in there and tackles well. We’re going to work him there lots, and down the road he’s going to give us another good cover guy and a guy that can certainly close and get to the ball. I think he’s going to be a good player for us.” When pressed for how soon fans will see Kenrick on the roster, BT told Huskie Outsider that it could be as soon is this Saturday against Manitoba.
The defensive backs’ coach, Cody Halselth, gave Huskie Outsider an update on his newest cornerback’s progress. “He’s coming along well. He’s obviously a guy who has great physical ability. He’s still learning the little subtleties that come with our system, and how to be a DB rather than straight line all the time. He’s got a natural football instinct – he knows where the ball is going. He’s going to turn out really well, hopefully.”
If you get a chance to meet Kenrick, you will immediately be struck by his affable personality and the positive outlook that he has for his new surroundings. “It’s been pretty awesome,” he stated. “It’s been a learning experience for me, and the guys have been great to me. I’m happy to be here and I’m very excited to hopefully get a chance to contribute soon.” Considering that he is from the Bahamas, our discussion with Kenrick wrapped up with a question about how prepared he will be for the winter that is just a few months away. “The guys say it’s pretty cold – very, very cold. I’ve already gotten a lot of clothes for winter and I’m prepared.”