Cal held the first of its two scrimmages during training camp and there was no real news to report. Of course, in the old days, reporters could tell you a lot more about the scrimmage because we were allowed to watch it — even if was just an observation of who is playing well and who isn’t.
Now, we depend on coach Jeff Tedford to tell us what happened, and as expected, he said afterward he’d have to watch the tape to really make an accurate evaluation of the scrimmage.
That being said, Tedford did single a few players out when asked for his first impressions. At tailback, he said C.J. Anderson and Mike Manuel had some nice moments. He added that Coleman Edmond “did a couple of nice things today, both in the return game and at receiver. He’s getting better every day and that’s nice to see because he’s in that top five guys that need to step up.”
Edmond is getting more of a chance because of the knee injury to Kaelin Clay. Tedford said that Marvin Jones, Keenan Allen, Michael Calvin and Edmond make up the top four receivers right now, with Clay, Bryce McGovern and Maurice Harris in the mix to round out the top five. But Harris tweaked his knee during the scrimmage and could be out for awhile. He needed to be further evaluated.
On defense, Tedford singled out safety Avery Walls and cornerback Kameron Jackson for their play. Jackson had an interception.
The reason these are all names of inexperienced players is because most of Cal’s starters didn’t play. Tedford felt like he knows what those players can do and wanted to get extensive time seeing younger players that are competing for playing time.
Jones, Allen, running backs Isi Sofele and Covaughn DeBoskie-Johnson, tight end Anthony Miller, defensive end Trevor Guyton, linebackers Mychal Kendricks and D.J. Holt and safety Sean Cattouse were all held out.
“We tried to let everybody play today to get their feet wet a little bit,” Tedford said. “We tried to really get a look at the younger guys.”
Some other notes:
- Fullback Will Kapp (minor ankle sprain) returned from a one-day layoff and had a 60-yard catch.
- Nose tackle Aaron Tipoti attempted to return from a concussion but was still feeling symptoms. He still could be out quite a while.
- Allen and Jones are at the top of the depth chart at both returning kickoffs and punts. But Edmond could be in the mix on kickoffs after a good performance today.
- The scrimmage was officiated by Pac-12 refs to give players a rehearsal of dealing with real game situations.
- Chris McCain, Cecil Whiteside and Ryan Davis continue to battle for the weakside outside linebacker spot. “I feel like there is pretty good depth there,” Tedford said.
- With Tipoti out, true freshman is the second team nose tackle behind Kendrick Payne.
- Tedford said true freshman Mustafa Jalil “is doing a nice job” at defensive end and there is a chance he could be on the two-deep when the season begins.
The Bears are back at it with another double-day tomorrow. Cal’s next full pad practice is Saturday afternoon, the back end of another two-a-day session.