Both senior defensive back Preston Hadley and junior wide receiver Cody Hoffman grew up with a love and a desire to play football.
Hadley said he was curious about football since he was little and started playing a little bit later than most kids.
“I saw it and I liked it, so I asked my parents if I could play,” Hadley said. “Once I started playing, I was kind of good at it so I kept playing.”
Hadley said he recognizes what an opportunity he has to play college football. “I know that not a lot of people get the opportunity [to play college football] so I try not to take it for granted,” Hadley said. “It’s the best. I’m living my dream right now.”
Hoffman shared similar sentiments as he talked about his journey to becoming a college football player.
“I always watched [football] on TV and my mom would never let me play,” Hoffman said. “Finally, she let me [play] and fortunately she did or else I don’t know where I’d be right now.”
As the son of avid San Francisco 49er’s fans, Hoffman grew up watching the great Jerry Rice. He hopes he can be an inspiration to others like Jerry Rice was to him as a kid.
“It’s surreal to me just because it’s almost like a dream come true to be able to have this opportunity and to have kids look up to [me],” Hoffman said. “I know I was one of those kids and I just hope I can inspire them to chase their dreams.”
Hoffman even gave some advice to his younger fans, telling them that hard work always pays off.
“Never give up,” Hoffman said. “I came from a small town and it just shows that my hard work really set me above and gave me opportunities [to] show the world what I could do.”