The week of Fresno State football started Monday with news on freshman quarterback Chason Virgil, who has been ruled out for the year after breaking his collarbone in last week’s loss against Utah.
Then came reports of quarterback Zack Greenlee, who was arrested Sunday for allegedly being drunk in public.
Now, the Bulldogs (1-2) are looking to alleviate a rough week with a win against against San Jose State in the Mountain West opener Saturday.
The ‘Dogs feel prepared to move forward without Virgil, who started against Utah before leaving in the second half with his shoulder injury.
As for Greenlee, there’s still no word on whether or not a disciplinary action will keep him out of Saturday’s game.
Fresno State head coach Tim DeRuyter says the ‘Dogs will be ready for San Jose State, no matter the circumstances.
Even without Virgil in the lineup, DeRuyter said the team still has enough to compete.
“That’s why you go through the nonconference schedule, getting a couple of quarterbacks ready,” DeRuyter said. “Unfortunately injuries are part of football. You gotta play guys in order to have that experience. I really like how [Greenlee] competed the other game. The fact that he has played all three games and moved our offense, I thought he looked as good as he ever did.”
DeRuyter also mentioned junior quarterback Ford Childress and redshirt freshman Kilton Anderson as possible options, if necessary.
San Jose State (1-2) hosts Saturday’s game after losing against a Pac-12 opponent last weekend.
The Spartans fell 35-21 at Oregon State in a game in which they played three different quarterbacks and recorded 253 yards of total offense.
Senior quarterback Joe Gray, junior Kenny Potter and redshirt junior Malik Watson have each seen playing time the first three games.
Potter was the starting quarterback in the Air Force and Oregon State games, while Gray started in the opener against New Hampshire.
Watson saw late fourth-quarter action against New Hampshire and played the last four series against Oregon State. The three Spartan quarterbacks have combined for a pass completion percent of 67.3 total (68-of-101), second best in the Mountain West.
“Potter is a very athletic guy, but Gray has been with them the longest. They’ve done some good things,” DeRuyter said. “Then they brought Watson in. He’s an athletic guy, a strong-armed guy.”
Potter is questionable for Saturday’s game after he left the Oregon State game in the second quarter because of an ankle injury,
San Jose State allowed Oregon State to rush for 325 yards in the loss. On the season, the Spartans are giving up 285.7 yards per game on the ground.
But the Spartans are optimistic about their defense, which has recorded two pass interceptions and one fumble recovery in three games. The Spartans turned those three takeaways into three touchdowns.
Saturday’s game will be the 79th meeting between the ‘Dogs and the Spartans.
“Having grown up in this area, I know about those great battles that went on over the years,” San José State head coach Ron Caragher said. “It was fun to read about it growing up in this area. It’s even more exciting to be engaged in this rivalry.”