In the Locker Room with Brandt Rentel and Oidie Kuijpers

This week the Review caught up with senior Brandt Rentel and junior Oidie Kuijpers, the two goalkeepers for the men’s soccer team, to discuss what life is like in the net, strange rituals and Gumby.

Rose Stoloff, Sports Editor

Why is being a goalkeeper better than playing on the field?

Brandt Rentel: Well, because you can use your hands.

Oidie Kuijpers: The diving thing is real fun.

BR: I think you have to be a little bit crazy to be a goalkeeper though. There’s a lot of pressure on you not to let the other team score. It’s not necessarily always your fault, but at the end of the day it’s your job to keep the ball out of the back of the net. You’re essentially just throwing yourself in front of a ball that’s moving really fast.

If you could play one position on the field what would you play?

OK: I wouldn’t want to play any other position. I’m so bad at them.

BR: When I was in high school, there were two goalkeepers that were juniors and seniors, and I was good enough to play on the field, so it made sense for me to play on the field. I played holding-mid. For my club team I also played striker; I was good enough to play on the field, but they put me at striker because it was the least liable position. Between the two of those, if I had to choose one, I would choose striker.

Who would play goal keeper if both of you were injured?

BR: [Sophomore] Remi [Schneider] or [senior] Joe Graybeal.

OK: Although, Remi says he’s scared of the ball so probably not Remi. It’d have to be Coach Blake [New].

Do you ever get bored back there in the goal?

OK: Definitely not. There’s always something to think about. Either you’re thinking about what you just did and what you could have done better, or you’re just full of adrenaline. You’re also always just looking at people and telling them what to do.

BR: At the end of the day, out of everyone on the field, you have the best view of what’s going on, so you act as a sort of director.

OK: It’s so mentally challenging because after you do something, you have 10 minutes to think about what you just did, and you’re standing there by yourself, just completely in your head and analyzing what you just did.

Do you have any lucky rituals?

BR: I always tie my left cleat before my right.

OK: I just constantly spit on my gloves. Also, I think this is something I developed this season, but as the ball goes out wide, and as I track wide with it, I have to touch my near post. I don’t know where that came from.

What was the most nerve-wracking moment you’ve had as a keeper?

OK: The first time I played here, against Notre Dame [College], I was subbed in for the last bit of the game. It was on our home field under the lights. Back home I had never played in front of a crowd so it was my first time playing in front of people, too. Literally five seconds after I subbed in, there was a corner kick, and it was a real high one, lofted to the front post. I stepped back, and clearly I had to catch it [so], I jumped up and I caught it. But as I was coming down, I felt the ball completely slip out of my hands, and I thought to myself, ‘oh no, this is going to be terrible,’ but it didn’t fall out of my hands, I caught it, but it was still definitely the most nerve-wracking moment.

BR: I have really, really bad vision and I was playing a pretty serious game back in high school, and one of my contacts fell out, and I had to play the whole game with one contact. I was pretty much just closing one eye.

Since you know each other so well, if you could give each other a nickname that is descriptive of your personalities, what would it be?

BR: I got it.

OK: I think I can guess what it is.

BR: What?

OK: Gumby?
BR: Yep. I don’t know if that’s necessarily how I would describe Oidie, but, actually yeah, that’s it.

Is that because of his tall height?

BR: Yeah, and he’s lanky. And also because, you know how Gumby sometimes goes in a high pitched voice, “oh no!” Oidie sometimes will yell, ‘No!’ really loudly.

OK: Yeah, when somebody shoots the ball, and I don’t think I’m going to get it, I just talk a lot.

What are you looking forward to most this season?

BR: Winning.