Catching up

A few notes and thoughts from Tuesday and Wednesday:

–Cal coach Jeff Tedford gave his players a reward for their hard work this camp by cancelling evening practice Monday. The Bears were scheduled to have a double-day, but they practiced only in the morning. Instead, the team went to the movies and saw “Rush Hour 3.”

–Running back James Montgomery and left tackle Mike Gibson returned from injuries on Tuesday night. Freshman running back Jahvid Best had a minor case of back spasms and was held out of some action Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. Free safety Thomas DeCoud is recovered from a twinge in his hamstring.

–The Bears will hold their first of two intrasquad scrimmages Thursday, and they appear ready. The final installment of 11-on-11s near the end of Wednesday’s morning practice got a little chippy, with a few incidents of offensive and defensive players barking at each other and getting a little rough.

–Cal opened Wednesday’s practice with some work on the two-minute offense, and quarterback Nate Longshore hit tight end Craig Stevens with a long touchdown pass. Later, backup defensive end John Allen sacked backup quarterback Kyle Reed.

–This may be the best freshman class in Jeff Tedford’s time at Cal. There is quality all over the field, including a handful of guys who could be potential stars. I’ve mentioned Best a few times, but watch out for wide receiver Michael Calvin. He’s big and may have the best hands of any receiver on the team. He’ll surely redshirt this season because of the Bears’ depth at receiver, but Calvin certainly will be a player to watch down the road. He made a terrific leaping catch down the left sideline Wednesday morning, prompting a high-five from Tedford.

–Many of the starting spots are coming into focus, so Thursday’s scrimmage may be more important for determining the second team. Defensive coordinator Bob Gregory said the scrimmage will help determine such things as the backup defensive tackles and second unit cornerbacks.

–It looks as though there are six defensive lineman vying for four starting spots: Cody Jones, Tad Smith and Rulon Davis on the outside and Matt Malele, Tyson Alualu and Mike Kane on the interior.

–Of course, the biggest competition has been for the No. 2 quarterback spot between redshirt sophomore Kyle Reed and redshirt freshman Kevin Riley. They appear pretty even at this point, and it seems Reed may have the edge just because he’s been in the program a year longer.

Jonathan Okanes

Jonathan Okanes is in his fourth year covering Cal's football team. Previously, he covered Cal's men's basketball team for four years. He can also be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/OkanesonCal.

  • Jan Koski

    Thanks, J.O.! Great reporting! What’s up with DE Keith Browner? I thought this would be the year when he would be getting some playing time.

  • SonOfAPappysBoy

    JO-nice report. We love getting the 100 word tidbits (don’t mind if it’s 200 either 🙂 ).

    Many people are wondering about certauin players, like Browner, other RBs, how about Frosh OL guys who don’t (usually) get on the 2 deeps….any thouhgts on less publicized guys is also welcome.

    Keep it up!

  • LaughingBear

    Great line about Tedford High-5 and the Coaches’ sprints the other day.

    What’s the coaching tone on the field in general? — the perception has always been that Tedford runs serious/disciplined practices.

    I do like the “fun” things they are doing, I think it shows how confident Tedford is of his team this year.

    19 days to go!

  • TrumanHugh

    Hey LaughingBear…what’s happening on September 3rd??

  • TrumanHugh


    I was just watching your Bears preview video online and noticed something taped to Longshore’s leg. It looked like a battery pack or transmitter of some sort? Then, when looking at a photo of several players (including Nate), I noticed that they all had something attached…what is it?? Thanks!

  • cal85

    Regarding the backup QB competition, is it close because both are good or because neither are shining?

  • LaughingBear

    TrumanHugh – DOH! I meant 17 days (bonus).

    Glad to see you on the Merc Hotline as well. pretty lonely for cal fans on that site. But very entertaining Stanford baiting over there.

  • Jonathan Okanes

    Jan, Browner is in camp, but it doesn’t seem like he’s in the mix for playing time, at least right now.

    LaughingBear, it’s definitely all business at practice. But the players seem to have fun, too.

    Truman, not sure what you are talking about but I’ll try to find out.

    Cal, I’d say somewhere in between. Neither guy has really shined, but it’s not like either is playing badly either.

  • TrumanHugh

    Hey LaughingBear–

    It’s that time of the year when I am serioulsy jonesn’ for ANYTHING college (preferably Cal) football, and for some reason, I have never thought to check out the San Jose paper…I guess I figured it would be too much the Stanfurd paper…it looks to be a good few posts coming over there…

    I like having a couple of “local” sites to check out on a regular basis.

  • SierraBear


    If you haven’t already had a response, Nate L. is wearing a knee brace (probably prophylactic – for protection not because of an injury) in the preview video. It looks like he wears it on his front leg (right-handed thrower) – perhaps to provide some added protection in case a lineman falls back on his leg at the end of a play

  • SRF

    I looked at the video and saw, I think, the same pics that TrumanHugh refers to…it is definately NOT a knee brace and it’s being worn by more than just Longshore.

    It is taped to the front of their thighs and looks like there is some sort of cord, wire (almost like an antennae) coming out of the top.

    Whatever it is, it looks interesting. I just thought it might have something to do with maybe a uniform cooling device or some sort of transmitter.

  • It’s a knee brace. Not the same type worn by the linemen, but a knee brace none the less.