Fann, Bonner Might Start for Northridge : College football: Injured offensive standouts expect to be ready for Saturday’s game against Central (Okla.) State.
All is almost well in the Cal State Northridge medical ward, which means that the school’s football team might field an offense consisting of at least a few identifiable names in Saturday night’s nonconference game at Central (Okla.) State.
Albert Fann, the Matadors’ All-American tailback, said Tuesday that he is back and operating at “about 85%" capacity.
Fann, who sputtered behind poor line play in Northridge’s 37-3 loss at Northern Arizona three weeks ago, suffered a pulled left hamstring in the first half of CSUN’s home opener against Eastern New Mexico 11 days ago.
“It’s pretty much healed,” Fann said before practice. “There’s just not a lot of flexibility. I get through the hole quick still, but I still feel it a little when I try to accelerate.”
Another Northridge spark plug, quarterback Sherdrick Bonner, also believes that he is ready to rejoin the battle.
Bonner, a two-year starter, sustained a sprained right ankle in the first half against Northern Arizona. After missing CSUN’s 24-13 win over Eastern New Mexico, Bonner pronounced himself “70-75%" healthy Tuesday.
“I can plant and throw; I can half-roll to the side; I can sprint out to my right, but my left is kind of. . . . it’s my pivot foot, my right foot, so it’s kind of tough getting around the corner,” Bonner said.
Nevertheless, he says he will be in the starting lineup at Central State.
“They’d have to get a mule team to drag me away,” he said.
Also available will be Marty Fisher, Bonner’s immediate understudy on the Northridge depth chart. Fisher, who has been nursing a separated right (throwing) shoulder, also was held out of the Eastern New Mexico game.
Fisher, a sophomore, sustained the injury on a hit just after he released the first of 31 passes in three quarters against Northern Arizona.
Fisher managed to complete 17 for 180 yards, including a 42-yard bomb to split end Paul Peters just before the end of the half. For the next week, however, he could barely grip a ball, let alone raise his arm to throw it.
But Monday, after a week’s rest, Fisher was back on the practice field throwing tight spirals.
“His arm looks as live as it ever has,” Pat Degnan, CSUN quarterback’s coach, said Tuesday.
Although Fisher will be available for action against Central State, fine-tuning Bonner’s game will be a priority, Degnan said.
“We need to get the No. 1 guy back in there and get him on track,” Degnan said. “We start conference (play) in two weeks and we want to make sure we’re 100% offensively.”
Also making the trip to Oklahoma will be a new man on the traveling squad: freshman quarterback Coley Kyman.
Kyman was languishing four rungs down on Northridge’s quarterback ladder before coming off the bench to help rally the Matadors against Eastern New Mexico. Greg Bratten, a fifth-year senior who was the third-string quarterback, had started the game but was pulled after two series.
The last trip Kyman made to Oklahoma was to play volleyball in the 1989 Olympic Festival in Oklahoma City.
“I don’t want to steal him from the (CSUN) volleyball team, but if he wants to play football I welcome him with open arms,” Degnan said. “He can play.”
Kyman, 6-foot-6, 215 pounds, entered the Eastern New Mexico game with CSUN trailing, 3-0. He completed his first four passes, the fourth to Anthony Harris for a 20-yard touchdown.
“If anything, we proved against Eastern that we’re not going to lose any football games because of Sherdrick Bonner,” Degnan said. “Having him in there makes it a little bit easier to win, but losing one guy shouldn’t affect a team enough to actually lose a game.”