WSU’s Harmeling Comes Back Quickly From Broken Thumb

PULLMAN – The Washington State Cougars have been fortunate so far this season, staying relatively injury-free. But almost a month ago, there was a big scare with Daven Harmeling.

It was then that Cougar fans were given some bad news. It was that Harmeling had broken his thumb on his shooting hand and he would be out indefinatly.

“Initially, they were telling me surgery and eight weeks,” Harmeling says. “Then they took it down to surgery, 4-6 weeks. So then they talked about putting this cast on my hand and seeing if they could play with it. I was like, ‘yeah, let’s give it a shot.'”

Only 10 days after breaking his thumb, Harmeling was practicing, and he played against the Huskies only two weeks after the injury.

“He came back super quick and he’s super excited that he can play this fast,” says WSU forward Caleb Forrest, “and I think it says a lot about him that he was able to come back so quick, ’cause it still hurts him.”

“Daven’s amazing,” confurs guard Taylor Rochestie. “Not only is he physically tough, but he’s mentally tough. He’s been through injuries before. When I first got here, we were both sitting on the sidelines talking about how bad we wanted to play.”

It was a shock how fast Harmeling came back from his injury, but just a suprising is how well he’s playing.

“We all expected him to be back and he was just itching to get back,” says Rochestie, “but to actually come back and contribute the way he has just shows you how much of a soldier he is, how mentally and physically tough he is.”

“I think the injury kind of made me step back and be thankful,” says Harmeling, “and just have more fun playing the game and maybe helped me be more relaxed and comfortable and not so uptight.”

Harmeling is back and getting closer to taking that cast off his hand. But as well as he’s shooting, he might want to keep wearing it.

“We do tell him, ‘Even after you’re done, you’re gonna have to keep a soft cast on there’,” Forrest says, “’cause something’s, it’s just something working out.”

“We’ll see how this weekend goes,” Harmeling says. “I might keep it on there, pull the Sean Elliott with the knee brace, the Rip Hamilton mask, so I don’t know.”

Whatever he decides to do, the Cougars are just glad to have him back in the lineup.