Garces quarterback Joseph Campbell, who missed the first two games of the season with Valley Fever, is expected to be cleared in time for Saturday’s matchup at Fresno-San Joaquin Memorial.
The senior is a three-year starter who threw for 1,904 yards and nine touchdowns, with 10 interceptions for the Rams last year.
“I am really excited to play,” said Campbell, who has participated in non-contact this week at Garces' practices.
“It’s been good (to be back). I’ve just been working on getting back into the offense and learning everyone’s habits again.”
In Campbell’s absence, the Rams (0-2) have yet to score a point in season-opening losses to Bakersfield Christian and Santa Maria-St. Joseph. Garces had a bye last week.
“He’s vital to the camaraderie," said first-year Garces head coach Paul Golla. “His leadership, to me, was off-the-charts when he wasn’t playing. He has been on the sidelines giving other guys water and coaching them up. Now he gets a chance to get back on the field. We expect great things.”
But there is a level of uncertainty for the coaching staff after such a long time away from game-time situations.
“We don’t know what to expect right away because he hasn’t played in such a long time,” Golla said. “I think this is a great opportunity and we are going to get better and better from here.”
Campbell has been cleared by multiple doctors to allow him to play again for the Rams this weekend, according to Golla, who understands fully the importance of being diligent with an illness like Valley Fever.
“It’s not just one guy looking at him, it’s a couple,” Golla said. “The family is going to do what’s right for him to keep (Campbell) safe and monitor the situation. Joe looks healthy. He’s running around and lifting weights. We are excited about his comeback.”