Category Archives: Fresno State

Fresno Faces O Line Trouble Heading to Nebraska


Fresno State will have to reshuffle its offensive line ahead of its game at No. 10 Nebraska this week in Lincoln, according to the Fresno Bee,

Starting center Richard Helepiko will be out with an ankle injury, the Bee reported.

The Bulldogs will start 6-foot-5, 310-pound redshirt freshman Cody Wichmann at right tackle.

Sophomore Austin Wentworth, who started at right tackle against California last week will slide over to right guard. Senior Leslie Cooper, who was the starting right guard, will start at center.

Junior Matt Hunt and senior Bryce Harris will stay in their original starting spots at left guard and left tackle, respectively. Junior Trevor Richter will serve as the No. 6 lineman in the rotation.

This is not good news for Fresno State. Nebraska’s defensive line is proving to be deep, fast and aggressive, led by Jared Crick and Cameron Meredith.

The timing couldn’t be worse for the Bulldogs, and this should be a significant factor Saturday night.

Fresno’s Pat Hill Talks About Nebraska Challenge

Opening Statements…
“We spent yesterday really evaluating ourselves. I’ll say this, after that game, that was a tough one to go through, but it’s a lot better to see that there is a lot of room for improvement.”

“I thought we did a very good job against the run game against Cal, except we did not do well on a couple option plays. As far as their tailback, except for the one run of about 30 yards, which give them credit they executed that very well, but other than that I thought we did very well against the run game.”

“Offensively, we probably should have run the ball more looking back at it. We did run the ball successfully and Robbie Rouse played at a very high level. Except for one eight-yard loss, he would have had close to 100 yards. Other than that he averaged 5.2 per carry.”

“After looking at last week, I really think we can make the improvements that we need to make. We’ll have to make them real, real fast this week because this team we’re playing is a very good team on defense. Cal was the top defensive team in the Pac-10 last year, and Nebraska is probably one of the better defensive teams in the country.”

“We are going to get a huge, huge test this week, so we are going to need to play at a very high level. We have to be very disciplined with our eyes, especially on defense against the option.”

“On offense, it’s going to be a matter of execution and we are going to have to be on top of our game. With that, it is with great excitement that we go into this game. We are going to have to be at the best we’ve been in some time against Nebraska, so there’s plenty of things as coaches and players to work on to meet that goal and to go into Nebraska with a game plan to win this game.”

Key’s to victory
“First of all on defense, we are going to have to play with great discipline and we are going to have to play assignment football when you play a triple option team. On offense, we are going to have to establish our run game.”

How big of a test will this game be?
“We get a great test this week. This is as tough a test as you want from an offensive and defensive standpoint. They are very, very physical up front. They are a very big team and we need to really be zeroed in on this game. ”

What do you need to do this week?
“The measuring stick this week is we are going to play against a very fast team this week, a team that executes at a very high level on offense. We’re going to have to execute at a very high level on defense because they will be able to make big plays if we don’t execute correctly. We are going to have to play at a very, very high level.”

What positives did you take away from the Cal game?
“There were some real positives from the game. I thought our punt team did real well. We won in the punting game and [Cal’s punter] is the best in the Pac-12. We won the change of field position on punts and kickoffs. So, we did a good job. We blocked two kicks. We ran the ball well and stopped the run well, so there are some positive things that we can take away from that game. We had some individuals that played well and when I name the names of the guys that played well, those guys have all played in a lot of football games. Bryce Harris and Robbie Rouse played at a very high level. Logan Harrell, Chase McEntee and Travis Brown played very, very good games. Those are veteran guys and we needed them to step up. Now the surrounding cast – we got good players, but we need to play better. We got to play better with our eyes and we got to execute better. If we can get that thing going, which we will, I still believe we can be a very good football team.”

On Derek Carr
“I think as the year goes on we are going to find out that Derek Carr is a very good quarterback. He’s stepping into the box with his first two games against two very talented defenses, so his room and margin for error is very small. The people around him got to step up to and that’s what we need to do.”

What were some of the things you liked about Derek Carr against Cal?
“I thought he did a good job getting the ball out of his hand fast and I thought he stood in the pocket well.

What do you do to prepare for the crowd noise this week?
“We’ll practice Wednesday and Thursday in the stadium. Crowd noise has really never been a problem with us, but we’re going to have to do something this week going off of silent counts and all that stuff. Candlestick was loud last weekend and our fans were awesome.”

On shifting from playing Cal to Nebraska
“It’ll be a different challenge this week. This is a more physical type of challenge, and they run extremely well. It’ll be a great challenge for our team and it’s the kind of game you really look forward to playing. I know our players are looking forward to this game.”

On running back Robbie Rouse’s performance against Cal
“I thought Robbie Rouse did really well. He averaged over five yards a carry against the team that led the Pac-10 in total defense last year. He played very, very well. Robbie played like a veteran guy, he’s a good runner.”