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Football: Bears’ unexpected NFL exodus continues as DT Moala says he intends to declare

Cal is confirming earlier reports on Friday that defensive tackle Viliami Moala is intending to enter the NFL draft.

Moala will become the fourth member of the team to declare early, and the third member of a defense that yielded over 45 points per game. Also entering the draft will be defensive back Kameron Jackson, linebacker Khairi Fortt and tight end Richard Rodgers. The deadline for signing up early is Wednesday.

Moala’s intended departure means Cal will lose bothstarting defensive tackles from a 1-11 team. The other starter, Deandre Coleman, is a senior.

The Bears will get back defensive tackle Mustafa Jalil, who played a lot in 2012 before missing the entire 2013 season with a knee injury.

Jeff Faraudo

  • Easy Ed

    Hey did I sleep through the 2013 season? Seems like a bunch of guys with a horrible season under their belts with mediocre efforts have deluded themselves to think their performance will make them hot commodities in the upcoming NFL draft.

  • joshiemac

    At this point I’m just ready to say good riddance. If they want to leave, so be it. No hard feelings, thanks for the effort, etc, but don’t let the door hit you on the way out. I mean, let’s be frank. These players had a lot to do with Cal becoming one of the worst programs in FBS football over the past 2 years. Yes, coaching has been horrible. But at some point the players have to be held somewhat accountable. I wish them all the success in the world, but something wasn’t working on and off the field with this crew.

    Let the (true) rebuilding begin. Let’s get people here who want to be here. Let’s just hope Sonny’s is the man to do it. Obviously, early returns haven’t been promising.

  • Picard

    Flip side to that, joshiemac, is that these were talented kids who came to Cal and their talent was never developed properly.

  • Juancho

    Jeff, you know you are the the king cat of Cal blogs. But unexpected? This was very very very expected. Given the reported internal strife on the team, the pattern of guys retiring, and the leaks of kids transferring, the only more clear thing than these departures is water.

  • joey

    No, you have it wrong. These guys would rather try their luck in the NFL than go through a losing season being taught by lousy coaches. It is pretty hard to put in effort required to play NCAA football if you don’t believe in your coach. These guys were set up to fail and quit.

  • Juancho

    Easy this guy nor Fortt had terrible seasons. Bigelow did. Rodgers didn’t either. He did fine. He was asked to move positions though. I don’t understand your persistent negativity to all the players who declare or transfer. What is the alternative, this kid who probably grew up dreaming of the NFL comes back to Cal to play for his fourth d line coach in 4 years? And risk injury for what – 4 wins?

    “Let’s get people here who want to be here.” These kids did. What changed about Cal that makes these kids want to get the F out. And why is everyone bashing these kids like they’re trashing Cal? They are young men chasing an NFL dream. Or doing what they feel is right for them. I’m not going to root for Ragin. But I’m not going to bash him. I’m not going to root for Tagaloa, but I can understand why he would transfer to be back under the coach that originally recruited him.

  • Juancho

    This is like when Mixon cut us from consideration. We all want kids that “want to be here.” I think where there is disconnect is that some of us feel the onus is on the coaches to build a program that encourages great talents to “want to be here.”

    Just like how the academic side of Cal has always wanted those elite talents to join up…just a short few years ago so did our football team. But it has regressed, but it shall hopefully rebound with a great d coordinator hire.

    As my brethenly brother Rob the Bear would say, with extremely prejudiced players.

  • Ray Finkle

    Does it really even matter? It just sucks as I sit and type, and 3-9 or whatever seems like a successful 2014……

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Tiny had made strides this year. I was really looking forward to seeing what he’d do with an off-season geared toward the strides he has already made. Damn.

    I’m thinking he got feedback that he’d be drafted in the late rounds. He probably will. He really did come a long ways this year, and his size makes it almost a certainty he’ll get grabbed by someone.

    Problem is, he probably won’t make the team that drafts him (like if the Niners used one of their million picks on him). So, he’ll become a FA and sign with a bad club that just needs the body.

    I consider Tiny’s decision a HUGE mistake. He made strides against very good OLs, but pro OLs are going to school him. Another year, even with unknown coaches, would improve his draft stock such that it’d be the smart economic move, too.

    Unless he fears Sonny’s injury curse, of course. I hear insurance companies won’t even touch Cal players because the chance of injury is just too great. (jk)

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Juancho,

    I get bothered by the hate against these kids too. Granted, it is fueled by people’s passion for the program, so they feel betrayed. I get more depressed with each exodus, dying just a little more inside each time.

    Yet, I can’t help but empathize. I see it as the school having let them down. When I came to Cal to study Physics, had the Physics department suddenly sucked, I would have left, too, or changed majors.

    If anything, I see it as more of a failure for kids on scholarship, as they had offers elsewhere they could have taken instead. Cal convinced them to come. Then switched things up and struggled. You take a guy like Tagaloa that actually gave the new system a go and I can’t fault him at all for leaving.

  • Easy Ed

    I hated to see Keenan, Marshawn and Desean go but at least that made sense. I have no idea what the Hell is going on with the program but if these kids don’t want to play ball at Cal, my view is let them go. I hate the fact that they have to sit out a year when coaches come and go when the mood hits them.

    Maybe it’s that demands are being made on their of the field conduct that haven’t been made in 10 years. I just am not ready to dump this on Sonny D just yet.

  • Eric

    My view of kids leaving early, which I previously stated – I’ll never begrudge anyone trying to make a buck for himself and his family. That’s what college is (in part) intended to accomplish. I think Allen Crabbe made a mistake leaving early, and his complete lack of playing time supports this, but he also making $850k, under the age of 25, sitting on a bench. That ain’t chump change folks

    I do think these guys are making a mistake because, if they don’t get drafted, or get drafted late and get cut, they lose the chance to use another year to bolster their credentials. None, except for Rogers, had a good year, so any NFL team is going to take a flyer on them based on pure talent, which – given the positions they play – means late rounds.

    It is cost/benefit analysis – make a buck now and avoid injury versus more bucks later but with risk of injury.

  • Joshiemac

    I probably came off as too harsh. I really do wish these kids the best, and I certainly don’t hate them. But as a fan I’m sick of worrying about all of these defections, and I’m sick of complaining about the coaches. Dykes isn’t going anywhere for awhile, and it’s not like many on the D lit it up this year or last year. So if they feel like leaving I wish them the best, bit I’m done wringing my hands about it.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    I gotta think the whole mass media / Twitterverse and such works very hard on a kids brain. They get so propped up throughout high school, even going through a virtual bidding war with colleges wanting them and making them promises. Then, they get to school and things suck, and they have it screaming at them all the time through their personal media connections (getting updates from friends that went elsewhere and prospered, too, no doubt).

    These kids get smacked with reality, only they have the outs of transfer (for a second chance) or the NFL (for a possible pay day). I’m not saying they are making the right decision (some yes, some no), but I am not surprised at all that they jump on their only remaining chance to control their destiny (as illusory as that may be).

  • The Wisdom Cow

    QUESTION:

    Who makes more money next year, Saban or his OC Kiffin (counting the money U$C will still be paying him on top of his Bama salary)?

  • 707 Bear

    Remember when Cal played a spring football scrimmage at Tiny’s Grant High School in Sacramento.

    Tiny was a recruit. Bigelow was there in his high school letterman’s jacket. Zachary Maynard was getting his first snaps as the starter.

    Sydquan Thompson was a Cal star and I’m sure Tedford thought that game might help create a pipeline. Not so much.

    Also, if you went to the game–as I did–and saw the neighborhood around Grant HS, you would understand why Tiny would want to jump at the chance for the NFL minimum salary.

  • Rollonubears

    I give up. It’s basketball season anyway. And we’re good. Go Bears!

  • 707 Bear

    What’s the record for most transfers plus early NFL entries?

    I guess we’ll have plenty of scholarships available.

  • covinared

    Dude was a 5 star. Started his 3rd year as a second stringer. Only playedt because someone got hurt. Good at stuffing up the middle but too slow to stand out. Useful on a bad team but only a short yardage guy on a good one. Classic bust. Sonny must be cleaning house with a firehose. If guys would rather bounce around on nfl practice squads for a couple years than play for Cal, in the long run its best to see them go.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    He would make an outstanding NT in a 3-4, Covinard.

    And I’d hardly call him a bust. He had to learn how to play when he started going against OL he couldn’t just overpower like he did in high school.

    It’s crazy how warped expectations on players have become because of how much the few freshman that stand out have been idolized in the media. Most players are not worth crap until their Junior year, and now most leave before the payoff (for us) their Senior year.

    Hell, now they leave before they even become worth playing. Well, when they have a possible pay day in the NFL weighed against a crap season for a bad team.

  • Juancho

    The kid had a new d line coach every year. Who here has had a new boss every year.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Oh stop, Juancho. Everyone knows they are the same as the old bosses.

    *raises arm gesturing to the right* Paul Schaffer, Ladies and Gentlemen.

  • Juancho

    So what movies are we talking about this weekend ?

  • drizzlyboy

    I don’t begrudge the guys trying to secure their futures in the NFL, but I have no love lost for transfers. You bought in to Cal, but when the team sucked you left? What, you weren’t part of that suck? So instead of sticking to your word and trying to make your team better and your school proud, you leave at the first opportunity. Mercenaries. Best of luck to you? That’s a load of crap! I hope you lose every stinkin’ game playing for our Pac12 rivals.

  • Steve W

    Four TFL,s 1.5 sacks and 18 tackles on the season. Good luck young man, but Cal needs pash rushers a lot more than guys who clog up the middle of the line.

  • Juancho

    WHERE IS MY BROTHER BOALT BLUE ?

  • 707 Bear

    Juancho

    Since our departed Moala is a proud Pacific Islander, how about best movies set in the Pacific Islands or about Pacific Islanders?

  • Juancho

    Ooh. Brother 707. Thats a niche list.

  • 707 Bear

    I just had a flashback to high school, seeing “Blue Lagoon,” the original, with Brooke Shields.

    And no, I wasn’t alone. However, my date was not properly motivated by the sultry PG beach scenes.

    Brooke is my age. I weep every time I see her doing those Layzboy commercials.

  • Larry

    I can’t wait until midnight January 16th, when we will end the NFL draft option for this year. Rodgers, I get him going to the NFL, but the other 3 I don’t understand. I hope some of them or all of them will graduate this year but I doubt it. Cal’s graduation rate will probably get worse now with all these defections. More problems to deal with down the road. I guess Cal football is the new North Korea. Just a weird weird place to be I guess.

  • Dan

    Honeymoon in Vegas- not a big Nick Cage fan, but he kills it in this movie- hysterical. Sarah Jessica Parker poolside in that bikini? Yikes! James Caan at his James Caan most stereotyped, playing Tommy Korman. Tark the Shark in a great cameo at the pokerntable in the private suite. And dont forget “The Flying Elvises”

    OK, some great lines. Helps if you seen the movie.

    “Like unbeatable is not unbeatable!” …
    “I know that now Okay? Errggh!”

    “You turned me into a whore Jack! You took me to Las Vegas and turned me into a whore!”

    “Chief Orman have pretty big influence around here.”
    “Influence?! He lives in shack!!”

    “Do you find Chief Orman attractive?”.  

    “What section of Kauai? There are sections of Kauai? Oh, I don’t know, how about where
    Jack Lord or Don Ho live, that must be a pretty good neighborhood.”

    “Always remember to have good words come out of your mouth”
    “1)My name Mahi. Mahi Mahi. 2)Like the fish? 1)Yeah. My father was a fisherman. 2)My father left home when I was 5. That’s why I’m named Jack, as in, ‘Jack tell your mother I’m just going out to get the paper.”

    “1) Hey, always remember, E hoopuka i na olelo maikai wale no mai kau waha-aku. It means always have the good words come out of your mouth. #2- That just doesn’t help me at all. But I appreciate the thought. #1- Aloha brudda!”

    “We’re the Flying Elvises. Utah Chapter!”

    Imagine Nicolas Cage’s head about ready to explode the whole movie.

    Apologies for minor misspeaks. Aloha

  • Dan

    PS on Honeymoon in Vegas- yeah a good portion takes place in LV. But the best parts take place in Kauai. Especially when Chief Orman/Peter Boyle sings from South Pacific.

    So I claim movie taking place on an island in the Pacific.

  • Eric

    Slightly different than Blue Lagoon and Honeymoon in Vegas, but one of the best movies of the last 10 years – Letters from Iwo Jima.

  • Juancho

    I’m going to have to check out honeymoon in vegas. Cage will always be someone who I give a chance due to his performance is raising arizona.

    Eric letters from iwo jima is an awesome movie. That’s one I enjoyed watching as well.

    Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a pretty funny recent comedy that is set in Hawaii. Starring that tall guy from the show how I met your mother. Has Russell Brand and Jonah Hill as well. Definitely worth watching. By the way for anyone on the fence with Wolf of Wall Street, go watch it. Dicaprio continues to prove that he is the Aaron Rodgers of film.

  • Juancho

    Haha “my date was not properly motivated” oh man. I think we can all relate to those days. What’s blue lagoon about?

  • Eric

    The Descendents is a pretty good movie re Hawaii.

    Blue Lagoon is legendary. Plus Top Secret has an awesome spoof of it (Val Kilmer’s finest role).

    Cage was a great actor. Raising Arizona. Valley Girl. Moonstruck. Leaving Las Vegas. Then he did Con Air and it has been downhill ever since.

  • 707 Bears

    Eric

    Thanks for mentioning Valley Girl and Cage.

    Valley Girl and Fast Times were the movies that defined So Cal in the eyes of No Cal boys living in the Sacramento Valley. Stereotypes yes, but seeing the photos from the 80s of my So Cal better half, seems those movies were pretty close.

  • Juancho

    So in effect con air was cages kevin riley at oregon state / tedford slamming the headset to the ground moment.

  • Woj

    2013 for Cal football was Rome is burning. Actually Rome is now torched with just embers smoldering but you get the point.

    Rome burned mainly due to horrible coaches. This became obvious by the second Pac12 rout handed to Cal and just continued almost uninterrupted the rest of the season. It took 7 weeks, a captain of the football team transferring, 5 or so other players bailing or jumping ot the NFL (when they aren’t ready) for Stormy to finally DO something about it by firing Buh and 2 other coaches.

    I actually think some of the kids that bailed can play and play well but they were being WASTED by a terrible overpaid coaching staff (the word coaching used loosely). Now these players are replaced by 1 star recruits with no other offers or JuCo guys with a limited upside. Either way 2014 = Cal at 2-12 or worse.

    The 2 changes that were needed are firing the AD and football HC and bringing in a very good AD to hire a way better HC. I pushed for Petrino to be hired and instead Cal got Dyked. LOL.

  • Eric

    Again, Woj, what is the point of your post? You say the same thing over and over. I asked you about this and you chose not to respond. Why not? I am thinking U$C Band might be the appropriate nickname for you – they play Conquest regardless of whether U$C scores a touchdown or fumbles.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    Don’t blame the kid a bit. He was a Social Welfare major who even at that at a very difficult time with school. If he can make an NFL team signing a contract for the league minimum will pay him more in one year than he could make with that degree.

  • Boaltblue

    Brother Juancho: you called? Best wishes to you, yours, and my beloved Bears for a wonderful New Year!

  • Wehofx

    Some good news for a change.

    rb Enwere Twitter:

    @A1_Pericoo: At this time i have decided to end my recruiting process and dispel all rumors or questions on where i will sign. I have decided to part ways with Michigan,Mizzou,TCU, and Boise and i will SOLIDIFY my commitment to Cal Berkeley

  • Wehofx

    …and seems like rubenzer should get almost as much credit as ingram for the commit.

    Go Bears! Beat the Beavs!

  • calduke

    It’s great that Enwere is firm
    He can have Bigelow’s Scholarship

  • Gobears49

    Would be interesting, though a major project for brother Juancho to:

    1. List all Cal players opting to leave Cal early to play in the NFL.

    2. List how many of them actually were drafted the next year.

    3. List how many of them were on NFL playing rosters at the end of this (2013) season.

    My guess is that the ratio of 1. to 2. is about 10% and the ratio of 1. to 3. is about the same. I’m thinking almost all of the guys drafters and who are now playing were true stars on the team, or at least solid performers, like Rodgers.

    Juancho’s list should be helpful in one respect, if he updates it yearly and posts it on a blog like this one — it will discourage guys in future years to think twice about leaving Cal to sign up for the NFL. Of course, many guys will ignore the stats (if they can understand them) and think they are different from the other players who left Cal early and were NFL busts.

  • Juancho

    Gb49. We talking all players in the Tedford and current era that left early? I can do this. One thing I’ve been curious about is how many of the current NFLers got their degree at Cal.

    I would say ratio for 1 is about 90%. For 3 way lower.

    Gb I will be clear about my position. Every family of every player is unique. And I do not frown on kids going to the draft early. Had I received a $1MM offer to join a corporation in my junior year I would have taken it and finished my Cal degree in the summers.

  • Easy Ed

    I agree Juancho, I’d have left too if someone offered me $1,000,000. Would you have left if they offered you an entry level position in cold call sales? If Keenan went in the second round, these guys are not top 3 round picks at this stage of their careers.

  • Gobears49

    Juancho,

    I probably don’t follow this subject nearly as closely as you, but I think there are always one or two guys who leave early that are not even drafted. I agree that the ratio for 1 to 3 will be much lower than 1 to 2. This year I think it is ridiculous the number of guys who are leaving who will not be drafted, let alone play. Does not speak well of Dykes, in my opinion.

    Obviously, you can decide whether this is worth your time. I think it would be best to show the stats year by year in terms of players leaving early, and you can go back as you feel you have time for in the Tedford years. #2 is whether they were drafted the next year (and what round, if they were). #3 is whether they were on the roster of an NFL team at the end of this season, though it would be best if it can be shown they were on the roster at the end of any sea on after they left Cal early — if they were on the roster any year it would prove the player was right that they were of NFL quality, at least for one year).

    Again, this is a major project — your decision totally to spend time doing this. But I think our fellow bloggers would find this interesting.

  • Steve W

    I have gone on record as saying that none of the Cal guys declaring for the draft is ready for that big step, and I think the team will be better off for their departure. I think we sometimes under estimate the importance of team unity.

    Lest we forget, the headlines were blaring one year ago when 11 juniors from LSU jumped to the draft, the most for any major college program. One publication had a headline that read, “LSU decimated by juniors leaving for the draft.” Didn’t LSU just play in an important game on the national level a week ago?