By Jonathan Okanes
Saturday, June 7th, 2008 at 9:53 pm in off-season stuff.
I dropped by Cal’s fantasy camp today for a couple of hours and, as usual, it looked to be a smashing success. I was told there were about 65 entrants this year, and enthusiasm abounded, not just from the campers, but from the players, former players and coaches on hand.
I sat in on part of the defensive meetings where each position coach went over assignments for a couple of coverages. Then it was time for the team to assemble in the Big Game Room, just as it does before every home game. Linebacker Worrell Williams led the campers in the traditional pregame chant, then it was down to the tunnel before taking the field.
Williams, one of the more engaging personalities on the team, got some of the guys going after “the Bears’ took the field by standing up on one of the exercise bikes near the stands and gesturing to a make-believe crowd to make some noise.
Players went through position drills, special teams and 7-on-7s. It’s always fun to watch how enthusiastic and competitive players get. During a one-on-one receiving drill, Williams and Zack Follett whooped it up whenever a defensive player made an INT or broke up a pass. Likewise, Jahvid Best and Will Ta’ufo’ou got fired up when an offensive player made a catch or scored a touchdown.
I counted 18 current players on hand: Williams, Follett, Best, Ta’ufo’ou, Alex Mack, Jesse Brooks, Kevin Riley, Cameron Morrah, Bryan Anger, Nick Sundberg, Cameron Jordan, D.J. Holt, Shane Vereen, Keith Browner, Michael Calvin, Ernie Owusu, Syd’Quan Thompson and Jeremy Ross. I may have missed one or two. Also, there were a handful of former players on hand — Russell White, Chuck Muncie, Matt Bouza, Nick Harris, Doug Brien, Na’il Benjamin, Dameane Douglas and Dave Barr.
Harris helped out with punting drills, taking turns with Anger lofting punts high into the sky while campers attempted to field them. Whenever someone successfully fielded a punt, it drew hoots and hollers from everyone involved.