Saturday’s game will be a little extra special for the three Cal players from Colorado, but that’s mostly true for starting center Chris Tompek-Guarnero.
(Guarnero told me today that Tompek-Guarnero is his legal name and he would like to be referred to as that. “Tompek-Guarnero” is now what is on the back of his jersey. Tompek is his mom’s name).
Safety Alex Logan and quarterback Austin Hinder are not intergral players in Cal’s program yet, although each is expected to contribute someday. But not only is Tompek-Guarnero a two-year starter who also started the first three games of his sophomore year at left guard before getting injured, he at one time had orally committed to Colorado.
“Anytime you play a team from your hometown, it’s always something special,” Tompek-Guarnero said after practice this morning. “I’m excited to play them. I know a couple guys on their team.”
Tompek-Guarnero is from Westminister, which is only about 20 miles from Colorado’s campus in Boulder. His mother, Trudy, attended Colorado and he made an oral commitment going into his junior year of high school.
But after the Buffaloes fired coach Gary Barnett, Tompek-Guarnero was unsure who his offensive line coach would be. He re-opened his commitment and “fell in love with Cal.”
“It just wasn’t the right environment for me to go there,” Tompek-Guarnero said. “I knew they were going to have a new coach. I didn’t know who my O-line coach was going to be.”
Cal coach Jeff Tedford said he’s been happy with how the team has recruited in Colorado, but said when the Buffaloes and Utah join the Pac-10, it will benefit them more than the existing members of the conference.
“They’ll be coming to California to play games now,” Tedford said.
No real news from practice today. Tedford reiterated that Isi Sofele is solidly the No. 2 tailback and Covaughn DeBoskie-Johnson “has a pretty firm hold” on the No. 3 spot. That hold got stronger when Dasarte Yarnway fumbled on Saturday. For Tedford, fumbling isn’t exactly the way to move your way up the depth chart.
I will be heading up to Sacramento tonight to be this week’s guest speaker for the Sacramento Grid Club. For those of you attending, I look forward to seeing you there.