Football: Shaq Thompson commits to UW

Safety Shaq Thompson of Grant High in Sacramento has tweeted: “Just committed to the UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON”

No real surprise, but the Bears lose another elite prospect.

Joe Davidson of the Sacramento Bee, on his Twitter account, quoted Thompson as saying, “It’s where my heart is; second highest graduation rate in the Pac-12…”

Thompson, rated as the nation’s top safety prospect, said there were lots of reasons, including recruiter Tosh Lupoi, who left Cal to UW just weeks ago, and the presence of his best friend, Husky freshman James Sample, a Grant HS alum.

Earlier Monday, Thompson said he would make his announcement Wednesday at 8 a.m. Apparently, he knew what he wanted to do and figured it would be easier to put it behind him.

Here’s the latest story from the Sacto Bee.

Cal recruit Bryce Treggs tweeted: “I’m not mad at Shaq at all though. That’s my brudah for life.”

FYI, Cal fans: Thompson and the Huskies visit new Memorial Stadium on Friday, Nov. 2; Arik Armstead and Oregon visit on Saturday, Nov. 10.


Jeff Faraudo

  • Juancho

    Not a surprise. Im happier its washington and not oregon.

    Bummer though.

  • Too hard to dissect this at this point re what the Teddy should have known and how he should have acted after the two left, to try to recover. I don’t think he had many options; He has to sell what he has in terms of place and academics and produce a responsible and respectable team year in and year out.Not a lofty goal, but I think we can be competitive in any event.

    The only think that would be clear to me if I were him is that I wouldn’t shake Sarkisian or Tosh’s hand under any circumstance going forward. Post game (or pre-game for that matter)handshakes are a signal of respect–something those two have not earned and do not deserve. The rest is all corporate college ball, so what do you expect.

  • PhilB

    Can’t blame the kid Shaq he has to do what’s best for him. Sark is desperate; the UDub has been surpassed by Boise St. and hated Oregon in the region, many of the best players in the state like Banner and Garnett are bolting and Sark I’m sure was under pressure to salvage a poor recruiting class. That’s why he threw all of that extra TV money at Lupoi and Kiesau. Pretty classless maneuver overall by Sark and the UW Administration but that’s just the way it is.

    BTW I hope Bryce’s tweet would indicate that he’s sticking with the Bears but no matter what they’ll be fine.

    Go Bears!

  • daredevilfan

    I was wondering if CAL should have filed some legal “tampering” charges against UW (attributed to them through their new employee). Nothing that they really felt would have stuck, but enough to give UW a bunch of negative publicity during this brief but important period, and cause recruits to steer clear. Maybe deemed too risky. But did Tedford again play things too conservatively and “play not to lose”?

  • eric

    I would have preferred Oregon – let them load up this year, beat the crap out of U$C and UW over the next 2 or 3 years, win the NC, and then Kelly will go to the NFL, Wilcox takes the HC position, and UW is left reeling.

  • ThisisCal

    The East Bay isn’t for everyone. Perhaps he’ll be more comfortable in Seattle where he can listen to stone temple pilots, wear Vans and drink pomegranate lattes.

  • Gobears49

    None of this wouldn’t have happened if we matched UW’s offer to Lupoi. Could have happened if Tedford had realized he was way overpaid and showed some team spirit by giving up part of his salary to Lupoi to keep him onboard. We can’t directly tie Armstead not choosing Cal because of Lupoi leaving, but we can for Shaq leaving and also the defensive lineman leaving for UCLA (Mccarthy ?)). Juancho can tell us if there were others.

    It can be argued that a much better recruiting class brings more victories, which brings more people to the stadium to watch the Bears. If that is true, then the increased ticket revenue would have easily paid for Cal to match the UW offer to Lupoi, even without Tedford kicking in part of his salary.

  • Easy Ed

    Good luck Shaq. Maybe at the end of your career at UW you and your brother can compare and see which place was better. I’m betting it’s Cal.

  • Kyle

    If your going to flip to go further north you might as well go to Oregon. Yeah UW has a better QB as of now but other than that you pretty much switched from Cal to Cal of the Northwest. Washington won’t be better than Oregon hell maybe not that much better than WASU with Leach now. UW and Cal I think are fighting for 2 and 3 in the north. He is a 3 year player no matter what but if for whatever reason football doesn’t work out he is really going to miss not having Cal on that resume. This could be a perfect example why you need to fall in love with a school not a recruiter. Go Bears!!

  • CalBearister99

    Congratulations Tosh. You’ve proven that winning football games is more important than honor, integrity, or class. You should fit right in with Sarksleasian.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    Look at these comments…

    The East Bay isn’t for everyone…
    Sarkisian is desperate…
    Bashing on Lupoi…
    Shaq won’t get far in life with a UW degree…

    The vitrol is just brutal. I am embarassed for your fan base. Won’t just one sane poster get on here syaing “If our team had made just one visit to a BCS game over the Tedford era we may have landed 5* recruits”. 5-7 seasons have finally caught up with your program.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    BTW I thought new facilities make a difference when recruiting. Not.

    It’s all about a tradition for winning and excellence.

    Back to 6-6 this year staters. You don’t have Presbyterian on the schedule. That maybe another reason why top notch recruits don’t want to play for you.

  • Where my heart is?

    What exactly IS Tosh doing with these young men?

  • covinared

    One day shaq will be in the business world. It would be wise when dealing with him to get it all in writing.

  • rotfogel

    Tosh Lupoi,
    No longer are you welcome home. You’ve been banished. You couldn’t see the job through, you had to bail when we needed you most.

    Well, you sucked at football anyway, one of the most useless players Cal has had. A former 4 star recruit who played like a walk on.

  • I really hate my pathetic life. The only time I am not in pain is when exhaustion actually forces sleep, and it is rare as all hell that I actually get to dream before rolling over pulls my shoulder out of socket and wakes me.

    So, what a wonderful f-ing morning! My daughter managed to set her alarm clock, BLASTING a little princess tune, over and over and over, yet it does it wake her up? NO. Wife is in the shower, so does the alarm turn off after the first 10 minutes? No. Did it take me out of a rare dream and back into this pain filled cage? You bet.

    So, did I log on, out of habit, not bothering to think if things could get any worse. I mean, how could the morning get any worse, right?

    This is exactly how insane people like myself end up having significant illogical grudges against otherwise upstanding people like Shaq. I will likely always hate him from now on because of just how badly this morning sucks.

    Better him then my daughter.

  • Yoda

    No. 7, that’s just ridiculous. Georgia got sanctioned for doing exactly that. And Lupoi is a scumbag. I’m glad he’s gone. He’ll screw over Washington eventually.

  • rollonubears

    I’ve finally discovered the source of my recurring migraines.

  • ScottyBear

    Freeze your ass off up there Shaq, you indecisive flake!!!

  • Juancho

    So here is the Tosh / Kiesau effect so far:

    Most of the 4 – 5 star guys had Tosh as their prime recruiter. Looking back on it, really bad decision by Tedford to have one guy handle all the blue chip recruiting. Sure as hell made Tosh real valuable. And made it real easy for everything to come crumbling down. Tedford needs to hold the coaches accountable for their recruiting.

    5 Star – Arik Armstead – commits to Oregon.

    5 Star – Shaq Thompson – commits to Washington.

    5 Star WR – Stefon Diggs – I feel our shot on him greatly dropped. Tosh was also his prime recruiter.

    5 Star DE – Darius Hamilton – will commit to Florida, prior to the departures Cal was in the top 3. When Tosh left he said that was his reason for removing Cal.

    4 Star RB – DJ Foster – committed to Arizona State.

    4 Star DT – Aziz Shittu – will commit to Stanford.

    4 Star WR – Jordan Payton – will commit to Washington this afternoon, in my opinion.

    4 Star WR – Cedric Dozier – will pick between Cal and Washington State.

    3 Star S – Zach Hoffpauir – will commit to Stanford.

    3 Star WR – Kenny Walker – may commit to Washington today. Not sure if he drops Cal in the end.

  • JIm

    ah … Tedford SHOULD have
    As much as I think Tedford deserves criticism for some of his decisions, blaming him for not foreseeing Loopy’s dishonor is rather … over the top (or substitute the stronger words I could have used).

    Cal now has two experienced coaches and recruiters with better credentials than the ones who became curs.

    Begone, Shaq … enjoy your stay with the banana slugs who leave a trail of slime. 🙂

  • Easy Ed

    A F’n men!

  • Caladan

    I predict that Tosh (along with his new boat) will eventually sink beneath the waves into irrelevance and unemployability.

  • shaka

    Let’s celebrate tomorrow those who understand what commitment means starting with Zach Kline and Christian Okafor who already signed their letters of intent. Too much whining, out.

  • eric

    Biggins has an interesting article today on the committment. See the excerpt of the article below:

    Thompson is an instant impact player and has been one of the region’s top prospects since his sophomore year. He’ll join his best friend and former Grant teammate James Sample in the secondary, giving the Huskies two extremely physical and hard-hitting safeties.

    Many will point to ace recruiter Tosh Lupoi joining the Husky staff as playing an important role in Thompson’s recruitment. Lupoi has been recruiting him for three years, and when he left Cal’s program, Thompson was heartbroken.

    “He was the one guy I was close with on the staff,” Thompson said. “I knew he wouldn’t be coaching me, but just knowing he was there was big for me. When he left, I immediately opened up my recruitment and decided to check out my options.”

    As big as Lupoi was, new Husky defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox might have played an even bigger role. Wilcox recruited Thompson’s older brother, Syd Thompson, to Cal seven years ago and the family was very comfortable with him.

    “We trust J-Cox,” said Thompson’s uncle, B.T. Thompson, who helped oversee his nephew’s recruitment. “He’s like family and we know he’ll look after Shaq, and that’s big. Not only that, he’s a heck of a coach and has been successful everywhere he has been. He’ll turn that defense around and the offense is already rolling.”

    So, Tosh had a major role, but also Shaq’s close friend and Justin Wilcox. Might be the case these recruits are wiser than we give them credit. And it might the case that the “Tosh effect” is not as black & white as some think.

  • CalBearister99

    “Lupoi told Thompson that he very well could be headed to Washington and to keep the Huskies in mind, and sure enough Lupoi was bound for Washington the very next morning, on Jan. 16.”

    Tosh Lupoi is a piece of human garbage. No ethics. No integrity. No code. Enjoy playing for him Shaq. And guess what – why do you think the graduation rate is #2 in the conference? Oh yeah, because it’s an academic joke.

  • rollonubears

    Great article on Kline’s commitment at sfgate today. I’m done worrying. Hope tomorrow is better than expected. Expectations are quite low to begin with now.

  • I disagree, Eric. Friendship with coaches is not a viable commodity. Trust is what matters.

    Are these kids afraid they will have no friends on the team? I get it when your best friend, your life long or at least through high school friend, the person you spend most of your time with, is going to a school as an influential reason. But these guys throw “friend” around for “people that didn’t piss me off when we met that one time.”

    When the chips are down, you find out who is your friend, not when you are a 5 star recruit and they are coaches. How Shaq did not learn the importance of integrity through Syd’s freshman year experiences, and how Tedford drips integrity, is beyond me.

    Sure, Shaq, put faith in young, upcoming coaches that switch schools in the weeks before LOI day, using years worth of work for one school to benefit another. I so tired of this crap. And sports are supposed to be an escape for fans.

  • johtwe

    Sark is a scumbag.

  • Will

    Tosh is trash, and what comes around goes around (even if he hasn’t officially violated a rule here, it’s only a matter of time before he does, and gets caught).

    But now it’s time to forget what could have been, and celebrate Kline and the great players that we’ve got. We had such high hopes that we’re forgetting what we have. Some great o-line recruits, and one of our best QB prospects in years.

  • discdude

    Calling “Lawyer” Milloy…ESPN actually said he may have violated rules when he tweeted Shaq.

    Whatever Shaq, we’re moving on without you. We’ll be fine and you’ll be fine.

    I’m not sure why everyone is getting their panties all in a bunch, Cal still needs to win some games on the field. That’s the most important thing. If they win games, this too shall pass.

  • rollonubears

    This team has never really been lacking in talent. Just heart. Maybe that will change with this year’s crop. What were we going to do with 6 receivers anyway? The Shaq loss hurts. He’s like Polamalu out there, and he’s going to dominate, but at UW, we can just pass around him. He’ll be a non-factor. Same with Armstead. He has a bad shoulder anyway. Nobody mentions that, but it was in the bee the other day. He may end up injured. And how’s he going to play hoops with a bad shoulder? I love our D-lineman and LBs from last year. We have a good crop. We’ll be fine. And this new RB, even though he’s not rated highly, his video speaks volume. The guy’s gonna be an impact player. A little more heart. A core group of guys that gets JT to pull that stick out that’s wedged way way up there, and we’re in business. Kline is the man.

  • Will

    That’s the one good thing I see coming from this, rollon – these guys are going to be playing with a chip on their shoulders. Kline & Co. know they got screwed, and they’re going to be hungry. A lot of these guys are friends, but the true #Calgang will want to show the rest what they missed out on.

  • rollonubears

    Another thing to consider. Our defense has never been a problem. Not really since 2001. That’s a credit to Tedford’s hires, I guess. Anyhow, our two biggest losses were shaq and AA. We can do just fine with the defense we have, and the kids who will be sophomores. Next year will be important to get a better defensive class. This year, it’s all about getting a top QB (done) and some O-lineman (done) and receivers (done). We are set in 2013, and should be good this year. 2014 is sort of the “stars aligned” year. We need momentum to build this year and next. If we win 10 in both years, I’d be fine with seeing JT’s contract through as 2014, with a healthy, developed kline, and a favorable home schedule, could be pretty amazing.

  • eric

    It might amuse those who post here often to go back to what was posted earlier this month.

    Take a look at the January 8 postings, when the first rumors of Tosh going to UW surfaced.

    Take a look at the January 7 postings, when Shaq made his announcement and McCarthy made his announcement. All the kudos of how great they were, how great Tosh, etc.

    Wisdom Cow – any chance you are the parent of a teenage boy? My son is a junior, starting OL at a football factory high school in Los Angeles. Big time recruits every year to major schools. Kids who are being recruited do not think in terms of “trust.” They think in terms of TV, NFL potential, ability to start quickly, whether they like their coaches (HC and direct coach – OC probably being the least important, since he is up in the box all game), and, importantly, the ability to play with their buddies. Even when they don’t go to the same school, how often do you see after a game guys from rival schools yaking it up – often its because they were (and are) friends.

    We’ll see what happens after LOI day. But if we lose more, I like to see some analysis of why. UCLA has been awful, and Mora was not considered to be a greta hire, but he is reeling in a strong recruiting class. Kelley flirted with Tampa Bay, and yet is stealing 5-star recruits away from the California schools. U$C is still bring in great recruits, notwithstanding Kiffin being a poor coach and the crushing sanctions. Washington State hired Leach (brilliant, brilliant choice) and already is making plays for great in-state recruits. Shaq Thompson’s brother went to Cal, was an all-american and was drafted, and yet Shaq is not going to Cal. Ariks goes to Oregon – a backyard recruit if I ever saw one, who could have been Tony Gonzalez volume 2 – and says Kelley recruited straight up without going negative, implying everyone else (us included) did.

    Why is this happenining?

    I have been told our prior facilities were terrible, and that great recruits stayed away. Well, if the class this year is pretty the same as it has been over the last 4-5 years, there is not great evidence to support that claim.

    I have been told Tedford is the reason we get great recruits, notwithstanding the records of the last few years, because a lot of Cal guys go to the NFL. Maybe so, but maybe it had to do with Wilcox when he was here, and then Tosh thereafter.

    People have written that Tosh is the worst human being alive (or second worst to Sarkasian) and he should be blamed for everything. Assume that is all true. Doesn’t that speak volumes of the lack of importance of the higher ups?

    Again, I have nothing against under the rader recruits. I love them. I love that they have a chip on their shoulder. I love how they want to beat the crap out of the schools that stockpile 5-star recruits. I posted yesterday re Boise State – that kind of model here would be spectacular. Heck, Monty basically does that, and he is generating tangible results.

  • discdude, which ESPN story/source actually mentioned possible rule violations?

  • wehofx

    I wish Shaq was going to be a Bear but, “Oh, well.” I buy into the “We are NOT entitled rock stars.” so we have “Big ass chips on our shoulders.” Hope #calgang plays with attitude.

    Thought you might find this article interesting. Klemm poached 2 recruits from uw when he moved to ucla.


    Finally, this is – for some, like my SO – an eye-rolling-overstatement for a stupid game played by kids but it seems that a lot of us here have gone through Kubler Ross 5 stages of grief: Depression, anger, bargaining and, finally acceptance.

    ie, Whoever we get – kids who really want to be Cal Bears – is fine with me, esp Kline.

    Gotta bust my ass today cause tmrw it’s going to be hard to get any work done.

    Ge Bears!

  • discdude
  • MoreNCsarecoming

    I vote this the most pathetic thread of posts and replies in the history of this blog. I feel I just took a bath in a cesspool fat angry overweight losers. I am so glad this kid Shaq didn’t sign with you guys. If he did anything wrong you would be the first ones to boo him. Just remember what you did to Joe Ayoob.

  • Caladan

    Honey, it’s a bath with a fat angry overweight loser every time you climb into the tub.

  • discdude

    Yet another troll post blocked….

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    I just read that Shaq chose UW because of academics!!!! I guess he didn’t want to be another in the long line of football players enrolled in the Social Welfare, Sociology, Ethnic studies and American studies program. He wants to go into sports medicine.

    I bet none of you will own up to that one. Your players get sold the education thing but the smart ones know it is just a shell game.

  • Easy Ed

    Moron don’t hate that to which you were not admitted! Stand at the intersection of Telegraph and Bancroft, look into Sproul Plaza, take a deep breath and sigh while saying to yourself, “Oh God if I were only smart enough to have attended”.

    –Class of ’78

  • BlueNGold

    Moron you are simply full of sh*t. If Shaq wanted to go into sports medicine Cal would have been an excellent choice for his undergrad pre-med work. If he was really concerned about ‘academics’, that probably means he was looking for an easier curriculum and better chance of succeeding in the major. Your obsessive fixation with social welfare, ethnic studies and other programs that you perceive as ‘gimmes’ only displays how woefully ignorant and uninformed you really are. If and when you qualify for admission to one of those programs at Cal and successfully earn a degree there, then you can run off at the mouth about them being too easy. Until then, your clueless rants only demonstrate how little you really know about the stuff you are devoting the majority of your adult life to posting here.