CSDTV: McClure Ready for Spring

Lindsay Brauner talks with cornerback Stefan McClure about his return from tearing his ACL, MCL and meniscus in 2011, as he prepares to start spring ball today.



Last week, correspondent Lindsay Brauner spoke in-depth with California defensive back Stefan McClure, who sat out last season after tearing his ACL, MCL and mensicus at the end of the 2011 campaign, against Arizona State. After a year of wearing a headset on the sidelines -- rare for any player, particularly a cornerback -- McClure is itching to get back on the field for spring ball, which starts Monday at 4 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.

Listen to our full spring preview in last week's Bear Republic Podcast HERE.

TRANSCRIPT
Lindsay Brauner: Did you know immediately, "Oh man, I blew out my knee," or were you kind of ready to jump back in the game? How did that go for you?

Stefan McClure: At first, I kind of just thought I just slightly injured my knee—dislocated my kneecap or something, nothing too serious. Then, as I tried to walk and my knee felt really loose, they were like, "You might as well go back and get x-rays." And from that moment on, it was kind of like, "Oh, my knee is really messed up." But I was just ready to work and start rebuilding from that moment on—just to work and start preparing for the future.

I wasn't really thinking that I'm out forever, but as soon as it happened, I was like, oh, I'm not going to be back in three or four weeks. So, from that moment on, I really knew it was going to be hard work, and an everyday grind to make sure I came back stronger and ready to go.

LB: What happened with your recovery process? How has that been for you?

SM: The recovery has been pretty good. It's long days—hard—hard work every single day. You really gotta put in the time and the effort to build yourself back because your whole leg is kind of really weak right after the surgery.

LB: You tore your ACL, MCL, and meniscus. What have other guys who have been in your position done when that's happened? Is that a typical injury for your position?

SM: No injury like that is typical, and you never want to see injuries like that happen. But for guys that that's happened to, they've come back and been perfectly fine and ready to go. So hopefully I can do the same.

LB: How has the rehab process been for you? How is your knee looking now?

SM: My knee right now is looking pretty good, pretty strong, I'm going to be starting Spring Ball on Monday. Right now, I'm full speed ahead. I'm not 100%, but I'm full speed ahead, ready to go, Spring Ball on Monday. I'll be out here. Four o'clock!

LB: And where are you on the depth charts?

SM: Well, we haven't really released the depth charts. So it's open for everyone. It's open competition for basically every position. I guess we'll find out in about four or five weeks.

LB: And you're still at defensive back? Or has Coach Dykes been looking to put you anywhere else?

SM: No, I'm still at defense—playing corner or safety or nickel. Mainly just corner.

LB: What's been the hardest part of recovering from your knee?

SM: The hardest part is probably just sitting out. When I was first hurt, and you want to start running, or take off running, your knee doesn't feel the same. Your left one feels a little different—just feels like something's not right—So that's probably the hardest thing to overcome—and just the mental aspect of cutting, and trusting that your knee is going to hold up.

The rehab process has its days. Some long days, some easy days—well not many easy days—but, tons of rough days, and just hard work. It's crazy how fast the muscles and everything go. But just rebuilding that, and strengthening, and getting back to running.

LB: What are you most looking forward to about playing in Memorial for the first time this upcoming season?

SM: I'm looking forward to having this thing all sold out week one when we play Northwestern. And just the buzz around here, for the new atmosphere, new coaching staff, new offense, and just going out there and getting that win week one.

LB: What are you looking forward to most this coming season now that you're healthy again?

SM: I'm looking forward to getting back out there, competing with the rest of these guys on this team, and turning what we had last year—a disappointment—into a success, with these same guys that we have—and just hard work, dedication, and everyone working for that one common goal.

LB: What's that one common goal?

SM: Rose Bowl!

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