Basketball: It’s official — Jabari Bird signs

Salesian High’s Jabari Bird on Wednesday became the highest-rated recruit Mike Montgomery has signed at Cal.

Bird, who announced the news on Twitter, headlines a Cal class that is expected to also include guard Jordan Mathews of Santa Monica High and Sam Singer of Ransom Everglades School in Miami, Fla. Cal still had not announced the signing of Mathews or Singer as of 6:30 p.m., but tweeted the word on Bird.

Bird, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard and the son of former Cal standout Carl Bird, is rated by Scout.com as the No. 16 prospect in the country while Rivals.com ranks him No. 23. He is considered a five-star prospect on both lists.

Consider that current Cal junior Allen Crabbe, who was the California high school player of the year in 2009-10 and was an all-Pac-12 pick last season, was rated just No. 69 by Rivals.

Scout placed Montgomery’s class as the 19th-best in the country, behind only UCLA (No. 15) and Arizona (No. 17) in the Pac-12. Mathews, a 6-3 shooting guard, is a four-star prospect, rated No. 88 nationally by Rivals.


Jeff Faraudo

  • Raf


  • Juancho

    Montgomery missed again on every big bay area recruit without a cal alumni father.

    Great coach. If he gets someone to help do a tosh well be a power.

  • ConcordBear

    I really like the way our basketball team plays, hard and smart.
    Awesome to have a talent like Bird sign and the other two guards are really good smart players too. Bird is going to be a national star.
    But, we need a big man or two to join the party. Bird and the staff need to work hard to identify an impact big man somewhere in the world to help take the team to a new national level.
    I think we will find and get a really good big to join this class of 3 and make it a huge 4!
    Welcome to Cal Jabari!
    Go Bears

  • Juancho

    Jeff – when are the end of season Bear Talk Blog Awards scheduled for ?

    I need to reserve a baby blue tuxedo before they run out. And pink now n later gator boots of course. Amen.

  • ken1w

    At this rate, Cal will be putting FIVE guards on the court, and do full court pressure, fast breaks, and 3-pointers for 40 minutes… 🙂

  • SteveNTexas

    Our class is rated #21 not bad- yes Juancho makes a good point but the class is better than we have had for a few years.

  • rollonubears

    I think I’ve mentioned this before, but every time I turn on espn or espn2, there’s a basketball game featuring 10 guys on the court, each at least 6’8″ and 225 lbs. Every team has at least a few bigs, east of colorado. We need to extend our recruiting reach back east. There is no way we can compete with all short guys, and couple tall scrawny guys. Ken1, you’re absolutely right, that’s going to have to be our strategy. Living and dying by the 3. One of those types of teams always seems to make a little run in the tournament, but they never get past the round of 16.

  • BlakeStreetBear

    All I want for Christmas is a young and exciting new head football coach and a 7-footer from Lithuania/Compton/some small town/ANYWHERE with some actual athletic potential. This Geoffrey Frid guy makes Max Zhang look like an actual athlete… 😉

    Go Bears!

  • Juancho

    StevenTexas. I do think this class is better than usual for Monty.

    But I don’t think he should get credit for that.

    When Bird committed to Cal, and he was interviewed, he mentioned that the day he committed (he was on a visit to Cal for the football game), it was the first time he met Montgomery.

    That’s ridiculous.

    If anything that smells to me of Tedfordism.

    Bird is a local guy who’s dad played for Cal, and the first time he met Monty was the day he committed. Absolutely unreal. If folks think that’s acceptable for our head coach I flat out disagree.

    I think he’s a great coach. Best in the Pac 12. But do I think he gets a pass on recruiting, big time.

    I know he gets more out of less. No doubt. But it’s also his job to make sure we don’t always start with less.

    Swing and miss every single year on the bay area stars. Except for the one who’s dad played for Cal.

    Maybe Monty can find more inspiration to recruit. Or maybe he’s just older and tired and doesn’t have the enthusiasm for it. If that’s the case the program needs to find a Tosh on the bball side to correct for that deficiency.

    BlakeStreet- Marcus Lee was that guy. A local guy. A swing and a miss.

  • BlakeStreetBear

    Jauncho, Marcus Lee was only “6-9” and not a college center – probably a SF in the NBA. And to say he “swung and missed” is fairly snarky, Monty was battling head-to-head with Coach Cal – not really a fair fight. I am sure MLee thoroughly enjoyed his “visit” to Lexington, complete with an assortment of female “boosters” available to “assist” with his “needs” while on campus. We all saw “He Got Game”…at least I hope we did.

    And, why should Monty spend time recruiting a kid who pretty much knew he would be going to Cal to play ball when he was like 7? Seems a waste of time…he had Bird from the get go and he knew it.

    If, and thats a big IF, there is no signee taller than 6-8 in the class of 2013 I will be disappointed…until then, in Monty I trust.
    Go Bears!

  • gobears49

    I have heard that at Stanford Monty relied upon the guy who is now the LSU head coach to get the talent. Maybe we need the same — sort of a Tosh in basketball shorts.