Football: OLB prospect from Richmond commits


Kennedy HS-Richmond’s Takkarist McKinley, a defensive end who projects as an outside linebacker, has committed to Cal. He will be a high school senior this fall and would arrive at Berkeley in 2013.

McKinley said he called coach Jeff Tedford with the news Friday morning. “He was real excited,” McKinley said. “It’s good (to make the decision early). Now I know what they want, what they expect of me.”

“They’ve got something there,” Kennedy track coach and co-athletic director Carl Sumler said of Cal securing the oral commitment from McKinley.

“He’s what I call an ideal athlete,” Sumler said. “He works perfectly and asks a lot of questions. He never misses practice. Never.”

Sumler said he can easily envision McKinley playing outside linebacker, defensive end or even tight end at Cal. “He has great hands,” the coach said.

At 6-foot-2, 235 pounds, Kinley reached the CIF state track meet in both the 100 and 200 meters, running 10.58 seconds in the 100 prelims. He finished seventh in the 100 final, and said his goal is to win both events at the state meet next spring.

At Cal, McKinley hopes to do both sports. He said Tedford has given him the green light to run track if he chooses.

McKinley said he weighs 245 pounds now, but doesn’t believe his speed is affected. “I think I’ve still got it,” he said.

Jeff Faraudo

  • Sounds like a BEAST! 10.58 in the 100m! Yes, let him catch the ball once in a while, please. Welcome Takkarist. (cool name too!)

  • Eric

    Still hoping we get Khalfani, who won the 100 meter and 200 meter, and anchored the 4×100 for Sherman Oaks Notre Dame. He was recently named Cal high school male athlete of the year.

  • ConcordBear

    Tons of potential. Love the local Richmond connection.
    Excited to follow this future Golden Bear!

  • 245 lbs. running a 10.58 second 100m!

    I’m thinking he may be able to make his way around on an end rush or two.

  • Steve W

    Something is wrong with this picture. First, guys who can run a 10.58 100-meter dash should not be playing defensive end in high school, period. That time would make him the fastest guy on his team. Defensive ends should NEVER be the fastest guys on a high school team. Let’s not forget that the fastest guy to ever wear a Cal uniform – Jahvid Best – ran a 10.39 100-meter time in high school.

    Second, I will bet a dollar to a doughnut this guy didn’t weigh 245 pounds while running the 100 and 200-meter dashes in the state track meet. It sounds like he is bulking up to play D-end. Forget about linebacker…this young man is going to be 280 when he gets to Cal. But I go back to why a pure speed guy would do that in the first place?

  • Esquire Joe

    He was 235 when he ran a 10.58 100. Not exactly a huge difference, so he seems to be a legit “big” speed guy. Sure, by the time he gets to Cal, he may not run that time, and he may well be 280. But if that happens, I bet he’ll be the fastest 280 pound end we’ve ever seen on the Cal campus.

    Seems to me that he may be better at TE or LB than end though. I don’t know all of his stats, but at 6’2″ I’m guessing that his wingspan isn’t huge, which might mean that he doesn’t quite have the leverage he needs to play end.

    Again, though, speed kills. Sounds like a great addition.

  • BlueNGold

    Just keep in mind it was a track coach who projected him playing all those positions. It would be interesting to hear what his football coach has to say about him. Still, pretty high compliments coming from any coach. Sounds like a guy with the work ethic to do what he has to do in order to meet the expectations people might have.