The Fresno State offense lost a key factor in the offense when receiver Jamel Hamler went down with a shoulder injury. Despite being fully healthy for only three games, the junior is the team’s leading receiver with 21 catches for 321 yards. Jamel Hamler discussed the injury and its status.
“It feels good,” said Hamler. “It’s like my real first week back to practice 100%...glad to be back in the rotation and in the mix of stuff and just trying to get back on the flow.”
Despite the injury, Hamler played in two of the last three games. Hamler described how it felt playing through the pain.
“It was tough,” said the junior. “I really couldn’t get out there and do the things I was doing before; play the way I was playing like the first three games. It was hard for me. I tried to tough through it to help my team as much as possible. But, now, it feels like 100% so I’m ready to get back at it.”
The Bulldogs’ offense turned their focus to the run game last week versus New Mexico State. The offense tried to reestablish the run game, with 37 rushes and 20 passes. Hamler discussed playing in this approach as a receiver.
“Obviously as a competitor it’s tough,” said Hamler. “You feel like you’re one-on-one with the DB a lot of the time and you obviously want the ball. If we’re winning and controlling the clock with the run game then I’m all for it; team first.”
With several injuries to the receiving core in the previous weeks, the offense had only a few able players to practice with. Hamler discussed the impact the injuries had on last week’s passing game.
“I think that may have played a factor,” said the receiver. “I’m not saying that’s obviously 100% why the run game got in still the way it did. That’s just our personality here. Coach [Pat] Hill felt that we were kind of straying away from it and he wanted to get back on course. It just so happened, I think, that around the same time that guys like me and Rashad [Evans] went down. Because the young guys Jalen Saunders and Isaiah Burse still made plays with us down.”
Now that Hamler has recovered from the injury, he has turned his focus to the upcoming opponent, San Jose State. Hamler talked about taking on the Spartans.
“I feel good,” said Hamler. “I think coach Keith Williams has got us ready. We kind of took a step back, looked at ourselves in last week’s film, and saw the things we weren’t doing too well. Playing through injuries and young guys stepping up there were a lot of mistakes we made as a group. So I think we’ll be ready for this week.”
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