The Freshman Fifteen - Chase Hammond

An overlooked wide receiver from Ohio, Chase Hammond could prove to be one of the steals of Wisconsin's 2010 recruiting class, as his big body and catching abilities make him a natural for UW's offense. Badger Nation gets to know Hammond a little better in its new series.

MADISON - From not knowing what his football future would hold to studying under three senior wide receiver, Chase Hammond feels like he has won the lottery.

The 6-foot-5, 210-pound Hammond, who had 72 catches for 1,038 yards and five touchdowns in his career, didn't know much about Wisconsin when the Badgers offered him except that the school was the only BCS school to give him an offer.

That interest was returned when he became enthralled with the campus ever since he committed on his first visit to Madison. What's his favorite place? His least favorite? What's been the hardest part to adjusting to Madison?

In a new series for subscribers, Badger Nation does a meet and greet with the newer members of the Wisconsin football team, shedding a light on some of the unknown kids that figure to be important parts of the Badgers' future.

Asking 15 questions, we call this segment the Freshman Fifteen.

What's been the hardest part for you adjusting to college life?

Hammond: A lot of people say school is the hard transition, but I thought that was a very simple transition. You have a lot of free time and the biggest thing is being on yourself to do what you have to do. The most impact on myself is the long days. You start in the morning if you have class early and if you don't have class, you are lifting early and then class all day. You don't have many breaks and then you go play football. You put in 13 hour days and it catches up to you if you aren't careful.

What's been the hardest part adjusting to college football?

Hammond: Probably watching film and learning. That in itself is difficult. Everyone physically, we wouldn't be here if we weren't good enough to be here physically. Mentally, when you don't have the mental part down, it's hard to do the physical part because you have to know what you are going to do before you do it. I think that's been the hardest part for me.

Since you arrived here, how have you changed your body to prepare for the college game?

Hammond: In high school, I prided myself on being one of the most physical guys. Since I got here, I have been trying to lift and stay in the weight room. I've put on about 15 pounds since I have been here. I've stayed right about there, and I am on the way back up since we started our program three weeks ago. I have definitely put on some weight and feel stronger and more confident and definitely getting faster. I haven't felt regression in any areas.

How is Madison different than Youngstown, Ohio? What's the biggest difference?

Hammond: There's not much going on in Youngstown, as anyone who has been there knows. Madison is cool. It's a different life. There's something going on at any time of the day. If you wanted to do something, you can do something. I tell my brother back at home because he doesn't believe me, but at whatever hour you decide to come home, there is always people out. That's something you have to adjust to because when there's 90 million things going on, you can do stuff all day and never do what you have to do. You have to learn when to go home and handle your business.

What is your major?

Hammond: I am going to plan on majoring in legal studies. I started on my major by taking one of my speech classes and also a language, because that's a requirement.

What are you hoping to do after college?

Hammond: I want to go to law school and not so much be a lawyer, but just have some opportunities. I plan on getting a certificate in business to add on to it. Going to law school, you learn all the legal things about starting your own business, you can be a sports agent and work with the athletes you went to school with and I like to speak and try to prove my point. Put all those things together, I think it's the right track to take.

What's your favorite place on the Madison campus?

Hammond: Probably State Street. I love going up there and finding something to eat because I love eating. I like to go up there, spend a little money and have a good time with the people you go up there with.

What's your least favorite place on campus?

Hammond: I really don't have a least favorite. I haven't found one thing I don't like. I enjoy going to class. I enjoy everything about Madison.

What do you enjoy doing most in your free time when you get the chance to kick back and relax?

Hammond: Sleeping. That's it. I will go get something to eat or take a nap.

What music do you like to listen to, what TV shows do you like to watch and what food do you like to eat?

Hammond: I listen to music a lot. My computer is full of music. As far as TV, I just watch whatever football game is on. I do like watching movies like Super Bad. I like humor, funny movies. I love seafood, like lobster and crab legs, and chicken wings.

Who do you live with and how is that going?

Hammond: I live with Isaiah Williams. Being the same position, we usually have the same schedule and school varies a bit. We've been getting along great and trying to help each other. When you live together, you can read each other and find out when the other one is struggling with something and you can help each other out.

What's the most interesting thing you've learn about him since you starting living with him?

Hammond: He's from Miami and I like his accent. They talk funny from down there. On top of that, he loves dancing. Anytime music comes up, he starts dancing.

Where does your biggest support come from? Family? Friends? Teammates?

Hammond: My biggest support comes from my dad back home. I talk to him daily, some times for an hour and a half. We talk about everything from school to sports to my friends. That's definitely my biggest support and without him, I don't think I would be here today.

What's your parents reaction to you playing college football here, being on your own for the first time and starting your journey at this school?

Hammond: I am about 10 and half hours from home and my mom is a mom. She gets upset that I am so far away, but she's happy that I am here and doing what I like and that things are going well. My dad was more ‘get out, it's time for you to go.' They are very supportive. My younger brother is like my best friend when I was at home. He's only a year and a half younger than me, so we hung out like every day. Those three are probably my biggest support group and cheering for me, even my mom who doesn't always know what's going on. She still gets a little scared. I guess she doesn't' want to see her son get hit.

I got a concussion in camp and I called a couple days later. She got real upset and was mad that nobody called her. I told her that they didn't have to and I am an adult now, so she calmed down a little bit. She was still tripping though and was going off. It was kind of funny.

It doesn't have to be football related, but what do you feel has been the greatest accomplishment of your life?

Hammond: It's definitely football related. My junior year of high school in the first football game of the season, I broke my ankle, had surgery and put six screws and a plate in. All the recruiting kind of stopped, so I had to stop worrying about that because I have to get better. That was the biggest hiccup in my life but that was the changing moment in my life. I would always go out to practice and go half speed. I was always decent and had a little bit of skills, so I didn't think I had to work hard because there was no point.

When I got hurt, I realized that it could be taken at any second and I realized that whenever I am playing, you have to do the best you can do because it can be taken from you at any second. That was the biggest changing point and I think that's the biggest accomplishment to make it here on a scholarship after going through something like that. I didn't even feel 100 percent until my senior year, my only year playing varsity football. I think overcoming that and making it to the next level is a big accomplishment for me.

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