Cal’s five remaining assistant football coaches continue to oversee the program’s day-to-day business, including recruiting, but they have no idea who the next head coach will be or when he will arrive.
“Nope, it’s been a complete secret,” said Ron Gould, the senior assistant with 16 years on the staff. “I don’t know anything about who the new head coach will be. I don’t know the timetable. I don’t know anything.
“That’s not my focal point. My focal point is making sure the players are doing what they’re supposed to do and recruiting.”
The Bears actually received two oral commitments this week, most recently from wide receiver Caleb Coleman of St. Mary’s High in Berkeley. Earlier, four-star running back Khalfani Muhammad of Notre Dame-Sherman Oaks said he plans to attend Cal.
Keeping the Bears’ other 13 unsigned commits onboard is just as big a part of the job as selling the program to potential prospects.
“We’re all going out there,” Gould said of the staff’s efforts to prevent other schools from raiding the commitment list. “This is the No. 1 public university in the world. We’ve got an unbelievable facility now and an unbelievable university where the kids can get a world-class education.”
Back in Berkeley, 10 days after coach Jeff Tedford’s firing, Cal’s players continue to deal with the emotional fallout.
“It’s a very, very touchy situation. You lose a great head coach and there’s a lot of turmoil in terms of how kids are feeling,” Gould said. “They’re sad, they’re hurting, just as the coaches are.
“The kids are waiting to see . . . there’s always a little uncertainty.”
At least one player on Thursday seemed to indicate his plans. Junior wide receiver Keenan Allen tweeted, “Decision made,” an apparent reference to making himself eligible for the NFL draft.
Allen hasn’t explained what he meant and Cal officials don’t know anything further.
“To be honest with you, I have no idea,” said Gould, who is Cal’s running backs coach. “Everybody’s curious about what is his next step.”
Certainly it would be a bigger surprise if Allen decided to return for his senior season. He is projected as a high first-round NFL draft pick.
Meanwhile, neither Gould, nor fellow assistants Wes Chandler, Ashley Ambrose, Marcus Arroyo or Jim Michalczik know whether they will be retained by the next coach.
Gould said he did not apply for the head coaching position and does not have any expectation about his future with the program.
But he said he would love to stay at Cal. “I’ve been here 16 years. If you cut my wrist,” he said, “I bleed blue and gold.”