By Zach Miller
South Western junior running back Drew Hartlaub will miss the remainder of the season with an knee injury, the team found out Wednesday.
Hartlaub, who is being recruited by Penn State and other Division I schools, tore his right ACL during the Mustangs' Week 1 game at Gettysburg. He took the ball on a sweep play, coach Damian Poalucci said, and was injured by a hit he took after stepping out of bounds.
"It wasn’t a dirty hit by any stretch of the imagination, just late," Poalucci said. "Stuff like this happens, it’s a tough part of the game.”
Although the injury means Hartlaub will not have any film to show coaches from this season, Poalucci said the junior's performances at combines and summer camps still give him a very good shot at a Division I offer.
In fact, Penn State coach James Franklin and assistant head coach Brent Pry both called Hartlaub this week to offer their reassurance and wish him well, Poalucci said. Poalucci has a relationship with both coaches from their time at East Stroudsburg in the '90s.
"He talked to Coach Pry on Wednesday and he let him know that with this type of injury, nowadays, the recovery time is so quick," Poalucci said. "He’s hopefully still gonna be able to run track in the spring. He just reassured him that, ‘hey, we like you, we’re interested, you showed us what we can do already.'
“Coach Franklin talked to him today for about five minutes. It says a lot about those coaches to take time out of their busy day to talk to him and comfort him and reassure him that he’s important and they’re still interested.”