It’s been a quiet season for Fresno State outside linebacker Ejiro Ederaine compared to a year ago when he led the Bulldogs in sacks.
Nagging injuries to his shoulders, dozens of plays that veered in the opposite direction of him and a few missed plays on his part all have factored into a drop-off in production.
But as his junior season wraps up with Fresno State (6-7) facing Rice (7-5) in the Hawaii Bowl on Wednesday, Ederaine could still finish the season strong after registering a season-high eight tackles, including four behind the line of scrimmage, during Fresno State’s 28-14 loss at Boise State in the Mountain West championship.
That performance has been the highlight of his season, while recording two sacks and 53 tackles. Last season, Ederaine posted a team-best 10 sacks, along with 63 tackles.
His performance down the stretch could be a sign that most of this season has been an aberration for Ederaine rather than a concerning trend going into his final year. Plus, he is scheduled to have surgery on both of his shoulders immediately after the season.
“He’s had a quiet season, but one of the things people don’t know about is he’s going to have surgery right after the season on both his shoulders,” Bulldogs coach Tim DeRuyter said. “He’s playing through that.
“He’s a terrific young man. He plays with a ton of energy. We’re hoping that the momentum from the last game — he did make some big plays for us — continues.”