May 25, 2019
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The wait is finally over for two ’Dogs

If you woke up early this past Sunday around 7 a.m., turned on your television to watch hours of coverage on the NFL Draft and had a hard time being patient, you’re in good company.

You weren’t the only one having anxiety issues.

Much like the rest of the draft viewers in the Central Valley, I too was wondering which Fresno State players will continue their football career. Tom Brandstater and Bear Pascoe were also clinging to their seats, wondering what will become of the 2009 Bulldog draft class.

It was because they were anticipating their names being picked between rounds three to six.

“It’s a long day,” Brandstater said. “The process makes you think that you don’t really know what’s going on. It’s a long stressful day. But after your name is called, everything kind of goes away and you feel pretty good.”

The former Fresno State quarterback was in Modesto with family and friends when he was taken as the first pick in the sixth round. He was the 174th overall selection, as his name was displayed next to a Denver Bronco logo at the bottom of the TV screen. It was early Sunday afternoon when his NFL career was officially born.

Nearly 20 minutes later, Bear Pascoe’s waiting game came to a stop when the San Francisco 49ers picked him as the 184th pick.

Much like his former quarterback, Pascoe also began feeling the stress while waiting.

“Oh yeah [I was anxious], the whole time,” Pascoe said. “Coaches and agents will tell you that it’s going to be very stressful. I was watching the draft when they called my name.”

He will now suit up for a coach who was also a well-known “Bear,” Hall-of-Fame linebacker Mike Singletary.

“I think he is a tough, hard-nosed guy that is going to give you everything that he has,” Singletary said in a news release. “I mean, he’s a fighter. He’s a competitor, and he just gets after it. So I’m very excited to have him.”

New Broncos coach Josh McDaniels also expressed his gratitude with his newest quarterback through another news release.

“In terms of the mold of a quarterback, the arm strength, the height, he is bright and smart, and I like that a lot,” McDaniels said in a press release. “He has above average feet that he can maneuver a little bit in the pocket. I think he also has a passion for football, and for being the best player he can be.”

But after both Bulldog players finished waiting for the NFL Draft, one question that must be asked is: was this long wait worth it?

McDaniels will admit that Brandstater will have a lot to look forward to.

“He has a long way to go, as most quarterbacks coming into the league do,” McDaniels said. “But he has a great attitude and a great approach, and I am looking forward to getting him in here and beginning to teach him.”

Brandstater has now arrived in Denver to begin working with McDaniels and compete for the starting quarterback spot.

“I’m fired up,” Brandstater said. “I’m really excited about it. It’s a great opportunity. I think there are a lot of things I can improve on. I think my accuracy can improve; and do everything else to be a better all-around football player.”

For Pascoe, the soft-spoken tight end is just content with his new opportunity in the Bay Area.

“I’m very happy with where I’m going,” Pascoe said. “I’m looking forward to it.”

Now we’ll see if we have to play another waiting game, when these guys will suit up and get on the field on Sundays.

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