Mack is back

Just received word that junior center Alex Mack definitely is coming back to Cal next season. There had been some talk that Mack may enter the NFL draft this year, but I never really thought that was a serious possibility. Centers typically are never drafted that high, no matter how good they are. Mack definitely is one of the best centers in the country, but he still likely wouldn’t have been a very high pick this year.

Returning to Cal is both good for Mack and good for the Bears. Obviously, he is Cal’s most skilled offensive lineman and has a complete understanding of the offense. So complete, in fact, that he could probably play guard or tackle, too. That wouldn’t be completely out of the realm of possibility, either. The Bears are losing left tackle Mike Gibson. Could the Bears move Mack to left tackle and insert highly regarded prospect Chris Guarnero at center? It’s something to consider. It would keep the Bears’ line strong, and playing tackle would greatly improve Mack’s draft stock.

No word yet on DeSean Jackson’s decision. I’ve been convinced all year that he is leaving, but you do have to wonder what is taking him so long to announce his decision. Could the delay mean there’s more of a chance that he’s coming back than you might think? Several other top underclassmen around the country have already declared. Why hasn’t DeSean? My gut tells me he’s still leaving, but the delay might give Cal fans hope.

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.

  • FedUpBear

    IMHO, I think Jackson stays. He’s the best WR in the nation but Longshore didn’t let him prove it — Riley will. The difference between where he’ll go in the draft this year vs after the kind of year that he’s capable of next year is (likely) *multi* millions. Would YOU stay in school for multi millions? I would, & I think he will too

    Of course, there’s always the Tedford question. If I were Jackson, I’d be plenty worried about Tedford’s decision-making. Who knows? Maybe JT goes crazy again and plays the less talented QB — like he’s done 2 of the last 3 years. I imagine it would be somewhat nerve wracking to have millions riding on Tedford’s apparent capriciousness.

  • Jan Koski

    Everyone applaud The Clown! Where’s Amy?

    Jackson will be rated the best WR after the NFL trials, and he’ll be making tons of money. He can come back to school next spring, once the NFL season is over. Anyone, who think otherwise, is a fool.

  • Ricky

    A fool? Why are they a fool Jan? And while we’re at it, what gives you the right to call anyone a fool? You’re the same fool who blindly supported Longshore all season. When questions where raised about Tedford’s competence you called us all, “fools.” Who’s really the fool, Jan? Me thinks you are!

  • D. Jackson

    I’m staying!

  • Jan K. Oski

    Hey Ricky,

    How did I “blindly support Longshore all season” when I put up the “Has Nate improved from last year” poll 2 months ago with one option being “No, can we please see Riley, again,” which I voted for. You’re another simpleton that cannot comprehend complex arguments beyond your nose. That’s all right, Amy is your prophet. Or, are you Amy who just joined the forum?


  • Jan K. Oski

    Hey Ricky,
    Since you posted as a name that has never been on the forum, you are obviously playing a game.
    But, can you counter any of these points on why Desean will be gone next year?
    (1) MONEY for signing at the dotted line.
    (2) Even More Money from sponsors.
    (3) Lots of Money for away games. Lynch loves this aspect.
    (3) He is susceptible to injury. He could get insurance to protect himself or he could go for the guaranteed larger wad of money.
    (4) There’s an obvious reason (Nate) why Desean didn’t put up huge numbers.

  • dball

    Why does anybody think that Desean cares at all about coming back to school? Dude wants to get PAID, and he wants to get paid as soon as possible.

    Best thing to happen for Desean is Hester in the NFL, who has made the NFL really keen on quick, small, agile kick/punt returners.

    Why risk coming back only to find Tedford deferring the starting QB decision to Longshore again? That, by the way, was the lamest quote (maybe it was misconstrued) by any coach….when Tedford said he lets Longshore decide whether or not he starts.

  • ckgeorg3e

    I think there’s a pure financial logic in favor of coming back.
    If you go in the mid 2nd round (where Hester went, for example), the bucks are not really that big. Then you have do well, and hope that you are still healthy when your contract is up and you become a free agent to make the big bucks.
    Talk about risk of injury – what about the risk of injury in the pro’s? There are no guaranteed contracts in the NFL.
    Desean is small, and also has some knocks – does not block well, etc.
    You could imagine a scenario where he goes 57th, and is making – what? – 800k/year and then gets hurt and cut.
    Compare that to coming back for one year, setting a bunch of records (including most punt return TD’s in the NCAA) and then going in the first round, where you’d get more than double the money in your first contract.

    I’m not saying that’s how it will go down, but there’s a logic to it. It’s not just “take the bucks” versus “sentimental return to the classroom”.

  • ice