Jared Leaf, San Jose State Football Player, Hopes to Play This Season After Escaping Apartment Fire

By NBC Bay Area Staff
|  Monday, Jun 16, 2014  |  Updated 6:13 PM PDT
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Jared Leaf, San Jose State Football Player, in Critical Condition After Escaping Apartment Fire

NBC Bay Area

Jared Leaf talks at a news conference in San Jose, Monday, June 16, 2014.

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Jared Leaf, San Jose State Football Player, in Critical Condition After Escaping Apartment Fire

A San Jose State football player is in critical condition after escaping from his burning apartment.
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The San Jose State football player critically burned in an April apartment fire says he would love to take the field for the Spartans this upcoming season.

Jared Leaf has been out of the hospital just a few weeks. At a news conference Monday, he said, while he hopes to play, he doesn’t know if a doctor will clear him in time.

Much of Leaf’s torso was badly burned on April 23. He had been sleeping when his roommate called to tell him their third-floor apartment was on fire.

Speaking to reporters for the first time Monday, Leaf said, with smoke pouring into his room from under his door, he knew he had to get out right away.

“There was only one way out and that was through the front door,” Leaf said. “And I just ran to the window, took a breath of fresh air, held it and ran out the door and ran through blackness and then red and orange, and then just light.”

Leaf suffered second-degree burns on his back and arms. His recovery included a medically induced coma and skin grafts.

The linebacker said the whole experience has made him appreciate everyday life.

Leaf is a native of Martinez, California, and attended Alhambra High School.

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