Football: San Diego running back chooses Bears

Derrick Clark, a 5-foot-11, 195-pound running back/athlete from Mission Bay High in San Diego has committed to the Bears, according to multiple recruiting websites.

Scout reported Clark has a 3.7 grade-point average. He chose the Bears over San Diego State after a campus visit this week.


Basketball: Bears get commit from 3-star Tyson Jolly

Tyson Jolly, a three-star shooting guard from the Oklahoma City area, gave Cal an oral commitment Friday night after an official campus visit.

“I really already had my mind set. Nobody knew, but I had my mind set,” Jolly said in a phone interview Saturday morning. “Getting there and seeing everybody . . . everybody looked happy. Playing with the team, they were talking up the coaches.

“It just felt like a home environment.”

Jolly picked Cal over Gonzaga and Minnesota, both of whom also had made scholarship offers.

Jolly said Cal fans should be optimistic that five-star power forward Ivan Rabb of Oakland’s Bishop O’Dowd High will choose the Bears.

“I think we are going to get him,” Jolly said.

A 6-foot-4 senior at Putnam City West in the Oklahoma City suburb of Bethany, Jolly averaged 20 points and nine rebounds this season, leading his team to a 24-3 record and into the state semifinals.

Jolly is rated a three-star prospect by both Scout and Rivals.

Jolly’s road to Berkeley was at times a frightening one. He overcame a health ordeal a year ago when pulmonary embolism blood clots in his legs and lungs threatened more than his basketball career.

“Doctors told me I could have been dead seven times,” Jolly said.

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Recruiting: A win for football, a big loss for hoops

The news on two recruiting fronts came back-to-back Friday:

– Five-star basketball center Caleb Swanigan of Fort Wayne, Indiana, announced a day ahead of his own schedule that he will attend Michigan State. The news apparently was a surprise to coach Tom Izzo’s staff, as it likely was to Cal coach Cuonzo Martin.

Swanigan originally said he would announce Saturday at the Hoop Summit all-star game in Portland. Swanigan and Bishop O’Dowd High’s Ivan Rabb were thought to be plotting a joint commitment somewhere – possibly to Cal.

Cal has been considered the favorite for Rabb, a 6-foot-11 five-star power forward. But he didn’t announce two weeks ago after winning the state title — at Haas Pavilion, no less — and still hasn’t shared his decision.

It’s just speculation, but you have to wonder if Rabb delayed his announcement because he was trying to close the deal with Swanigan.

I am hearing Rabb is unlikely to announce Saturday. Perhaps he is planning something when he returns to the Bay Area.

– The news was better for football, where the Bears nabbed their second quarterback in the class of 2016. Max Gilliam, a 6-3, 192-pounder from Thousand Oaks High, was on campus Friday for an unofficial visit. Cal offered and he accepted, then tweeted his decision.

Gilliam is rated as a three-star prospect by Rivals, Scout and 247 Sports.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Gilliam passed for 2,920 yards and 29 touchdowns as a junior last fall and rushed for 625 yards and 12 TDs.

He joins Armani Rogers, a 6-5 dual-threat quarterback from Hamilton High in Los Angeles in the Bears’ 2016 class. Cal also got a commitment earlier this week from offensive lineman Daniel Juarez, a 6-5, 292-pounder from Corona-Centennial.


Basketball: Cuonzo Martin says Tyrone Wallace is smart to take his time on NBA draft decision

On the day seven Kentucky underclassmen declared for the NBA draft, Cal coach Cuonzo Martin said junior point guard Tyrone Wallace still hasn’t made a decision about his future.

“I think Tyrone is weighing his options, which is fine,” Martin said. “He’ll assess who’s going in the draft, who’s returning to school. Then he’ll make his decision from there, but he’s still (up) in the air.”

The deadline for early entry into the NBA draft is April 26, and Martin said his first-team all-Pac-12 should take all the time he needs.

“There is no timetable for him,” Martin said.” This is a very important decision. You owe it to a young man to take his time and make the right decision.

“The thing we talked about when the season was over was what’s best for Tyrone Wallace, putting himself in position to be the best he can be and where he sees himself as far as the draft’s concerned, where he’s projected.”

Wallace is not projected to be a first-round pick, but Martin said that won’t necessarily mean Wallace says no to the pros.

“I don’t know if he’s necessarily said, `If I’m not in the first round I won’t go in the draft.’ I don’t think he’s said that,” Martin said.

Martin believes a player taken in the top half of the second round likely has a good future, but called anything later than that a “gray area where you’ve got to be lucky.”


Martin said he has received a large number of inquiries from potential candidates for the coaching staff vacancy left when Jon Harris was hired as head coach at Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. Included, he said, are NBA assistant coaches.

Martin said he may not hire a replacement for Harris for a couple weeks, and will be careful to find someone who is a good fit for his staff.


Basketball: Assistant Jon Harris gets HC job

Cal assistant Jon Harris, who has worked with Cuonzo Martin for the past seven seasons, was hired as head coach at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville of the Ohio Valley Conference.

Harris is a native of Edwardsville.

“I am incredibly thrilled for Jon,” Martin said in a statement. “He has worked tirelessly on our staff over the past seven years. Jon is a great coach, leader and friend. He has an opportunity to make a tremendous impact on his hometown program.

“I wish him, his wife Heidi and their three children all the best in their new endeavors.”

Harris served on Martin’s coaching staff at Cal and previously at Tennessee and Missouri State.


Basketball: What will Bears’ roster look like?

With the unsurprising news that Christian Behrens will not return for his senior season, Cal now has one additional scholarship available for next season.

Division I men’s basketball program are allowed 13 scholarships, and the Bears currently have four open spots.

One of those is committed to Davon Dillard, a three-star small forward who committed to Cal last month and is expected to sign April 15.

That leaves three open scholarships.

Coach Cuonzo Martin would love to hand those out to power forward Ivan Rabb, small forward Jaylen Brown and center Caleb Swanigan.

There is one other variable at play: What will junior point guard Tyrone Wallace decide?

Wallace reportedly has not made a decision on whether he will forgo his final college season and enter the NBA draft. In current mock drafts, draftexpress.com envisions Wallace as the No. 8 pick in the second round, and nbadraft.net does not show Wallace being taken in the two-round draft.

Here is Cal’s current roster breakdown:

– Guards (6): Jabari Bird, Brandon Chauca, Stephen Domingo, Jordan Mathews, Sam Singer, Tyrone Wallace.

– Forwards (1): Roger Moute a Bidias.

– Centers (2): Kingsley Okoroh, Kameron Rooks.

Yes, with seniors David Kravish and Dwight Tarwater gone and Behrens departing, the Bears are a little light at the forward spots. Regardless of whether Martin is able to sign the five-star talent he wants, expect Cal to add one or two players who can operate at the 3 or 4 spots.

In particular, the Bears need a power forward with some girth and muscle. A grad-student transfer or JC player could wind up filling that role.


Basketball: Behrens won’t return next season

Junior forward Christian Behrens, a part-time starter who is on schedule to graduate with a degree in American Studies this spring, will not return to the Bears’ roster next season.

Cal sent out a news release Thursday saying that Behrens has decided “pursue professional opportunities,” but the reality is Behrens’ playing time with the Bears likely would have been reduced next season.

Here is Behrens’ statement:

“I want thank the entire California Athletics family for giving me this tremendous opportunity to represent the Golden Bears. I am on track to graduate in May with a degree from the world’s No. 1 public institution, which is a great honor. I believe at this time, I want to start a new chapter in my basketball career and pursue professional opportunities. I cherish my experiences here at Cal and have created friendships here that will last a lifetime. I will always be a Golden Bear.”

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Basketball: Cal recruiting target Ivan Rabb scores 10 points in McDonald’s game, but does not pick a school

Bishop O’Dowd High’s Ivan Rabb scored 10 points in the McDonald’s All-American Game at the United Center in Chicago on Wednesday night, but did not announce his college destination.

The 6-foot-11 forward, a consensus top-10 national prospect, confirmed in an ESPN interview that he has narrowed his choices to Cal and Arizona.

“Arizona’s already established,” Rabb said. “Cal’s got a new coaching staff and they’re very hungry. They’re looking for someone like me to come in.

“Everybody wants me to stay home. I know if I stay, there will be a lot of support,” he continued. “If I was to go there, I possibly would be able to get people to come with me.”

Cal also is recruiting two other non-committed top-10 players who participated in the McDonald’s game — center Caleb Swanigan of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and small forward Jaylen Brown of Marietta, Georgia. Swanigan tweeted that he intends to announce his college decision April 11 at the Hoop Summit international all-star game in Portland.

Rabb scored the game’s first basket on a fastbreak dunk and finished 5 for 6 from the field in the game featuring the top high school players in the country. He had six rebounds for the West team.

The East won 111-91 behind 18 points and 10 rebounds from Chieck Diallo.