Defensive end Codie Brooks isn't changing as a person just because the UTSA coaching staff has granted him a scholarship.

He's not altering his outlook just because he earned a few postseason honors.

Brooks will take the same, aggressive approach into the offseason that he did this time last year in hopes that he'll show up for spring practice as a better athlete.

All that notwithstanding, he admitted recently that it's a relief to know that he no longer has to worry about paying the bills for school.

“Getting that burden off my back and having all that stuff paid for is a real blessing,” he said. “I just have to thank all the coaches for hanging in there with me and believing in me.”

In his first two years at UTSA, Brooks worked his way into the playing rotation in steps.

First, he sat out 2012, gaining strength and confidence as a redshirt. Last fall, in his first chance to play, he rose quickly through the ranks and became a force on the team's defense.

The 6-foot-1, 250-pound former Seguin standout played 11 games and started five, making 34 tackles and registering a team-leading five sacks.

That performance earned him honorable mention on the Conference USA all-conference team and a spot on the league's all-freshman team.

His dream next year as a sophomore? To play in the conference title game and a bowl game.

“We have a great foundation coming back, and we push ourselves every day,” Brooks said. “We feel like we should have been in the conference championship (last fall), but we missed out. We just got to build on that. That's our goal for next year.”

Spring football: Signing day for incoming recruits is Feb. 5.

The opening date of spring practices hasn't been set yet, but there will be 15 workouts, concluding April 26 with the spring game at the Alamodome.