Thursday, March 15th, 2007 at 5:20 pm in off-season stuff.
It was very impressive watching Cal’s throwing drills on Wednesday during spring practice. Not only did Nate Longshore look very sharp, but Kyle Reed and Kevin Riley were very impressive. This Reed-Riley showdown is going to be very interesting. For one, Reed has come a long way in a year. He sets up very quickly now and gets ready to throw in a hurry. He has some very impressive athletic skills and a very strong arm.
Riley’s accuracy was uncanny on Wednesday. He isn’t quite the athlete that Reed is, but he is very fluid and every pass seems to hit his receivers chest high in the hands. It was very impressive watching him throw out pattern after out pattern right on target.
Of course, the competition probably is more important to Reed than Riley, who as a redshirt freshman is a year behind Reed. If Reed doesn’t secure the No. 2 spot, it will be interesting to see what he decides to do. He obviously has the talent to play Division I-A football. But Longshore will be just a junior next season and Riley has four years of eligibility remaining. Plus, more quarterbacks are on the way.
Young quarterbacks seldom realize they are just one or two snaps from being the starter. It appears to be the exception, not the norm, that a quarterback keeps his health through an entire season. If Jeff Tedford can find a way to keep all three happy, it bodes well for team depth.
As far as other observations, new tight end Skylar Curran looks very gifted as a receiver, but he has the bulk to be effective on the line as well. Although Cal is well stocked at tight end, I would imagine that Curran will contribute this season.
Tailback Justin Forsett looked very quick in drills.
Junior wide receiver Drew Glover made a great diving catch of a long pass, but of course, he is buried on the depth chart.
Walk on tight end Garry Graffort was given quite a few opportunities to make plays during scrimmage opportunities. The kid has some talent.
Lavelle Hawkins, DeSean Jackson and Robert Jordan all flashed their talent at times during the workout. What a trio.
Derrick Hill looks healthy after last season’s knee injury and he should be a force. He runs very well for a big, big man.
Transfer wide receiver Nyan Boateng is a beast. He has very strong hands grabbing the ball away from defenders and has a big body that makes it tough on small defensive backs. He will be just what the doctor ordered when Cal loses Jordan, Hawkins and possibly Jackson (to the NFL draft) after this season.
Cal is stocked at linebacker, but Eddie Young looks like he could become a force in the near future. His physical talent is impressive.
Also, just thought I would note that Ken Delgado is now the assistant head coach. Good stuff for a guy who knows how to assemble talent.