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Cal basketball: JC point guard makes it official

Don Coleman, a freshman point guard at Lawson State, a junior college in Birmingham, Alabama, signed his letter-of-intent to play for Cal, according to media sources.

Cal was yet to make an official announcement.

Coleman, who committed to the Bears during the season, will come to Berkeley next fall with three years of eligibility. He is expected to compete with Sam Singer for the starting point guard position.

A 6-foot-3, 190-pounder, Coleman averaged 20 points, 6.2 assists and 4.5 rebounds and shot 43 percent from the 3-point arc.

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Cal football: Depth at safety to be tested if Damariay Drew’s knee injury is serious

Cal’s potential defensive renaissance took a hit this week when senior safety Damariay Drew suffered a knee injury that will require surgery and leaves his status for the fall season unclear.

Coach Sonny Dykes said Drew would have surgery within a week or two. He did not speculate on the nature or severity of the injury or Drew’s prognosis going forward.

The injury occurred during Wednesday’s spring practice.

The Bears expect their defense to be stronger this season, partly thanks for improved depth. That could be tested if Drew — one of the team’s hardest hitters and most experienced defenders — is sidelined. Senior Khari Vanderbilt was listed as Drew’s No. 2 on a spring depth chart released this week and sophomore Evan Rambo has performed well enough that he is penciled in as the other starting safety.

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Cal football: Prolific JC linebacker to join Bears

Cal has signed Jordan Kunaszyk, a 6-foot-3, 235-pound linebacker from American River College, who will join the Bears as a sophomore in the fall.

Kunaszyk led all California JC players with 118 tackles and earned Freshman All-American and Defensive Player of the Year honors for the NorCal division of the California Community College Athletic Association.

“Jordan was as productive as any junior college linebacker in the country last season,” Cal coach Sonny Dykes said in a statement. “He’s a good athlete with excellent size and great range. We expect him to compete for a starting spot at linebacker right away, as well as jump into the mix on special teams because of his size, strength and athleticism. Jordan is exactly the type of player we are looking for.”

A native of Roseville, led ARC to a 7-4 record and a bowl bid last season. He has three seasons to play for the Bears.

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Cal basketball: Tyson Jolly asks out of letter-of-intent

A bad week for Cal basketball got worse Sunday when four-star shooting guard Tyson Jolly asked to be released from the letter-of-intent he signed in November.

Jolly, who played this season at Elev8 Sports Academy in Delray Beach, Florida, announced his change-of-heart on Twitter.

“Given the uncertainty at Cal, I have decided 2 ask out of my LOI and re-open my recruitment. This was not an easy decision, but the right 1,” he tweeted.

Jolly was referencing the firing last Monday of assistant coach Yann Hufnagel, who was found to have sexually harassed a female reporter, and a subsequent announcement by the university to review whether head coach Cuonzo Martin reported the incident to the athletic department in a timely fashion.

Jolly later added via Twitter: “I do whatever I want! I realized I was going to get criticized regardless so why worry about it.”

Seeded No. 4 in the NCAA tournament, the Bears dropped their opening game Thursday to Hawaii.

Jolly, who originally signed with Cal in November 2014 then decided to spend a year at prep school, was the Bears’ only signed recruit in this year’s class.

Cal also has an oral commitment from Dontae Coleman, a point guard from Lawson State Community College from Birmingham, Alabama.

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Cal football: Ex-Texas A&M O-lineman joins Bears

Offensive lineman Jeremiah Stuckey, a Pacifica native and recent graduate of Texas A&M, has signed a financial aid agreement to play football for Cal next season as a graduate transfer.

Stuckey, a 6-foot-4, 300-pounder, saw action in 14 games over two seasons, starting five times at left guard in 2015. Cal coach Sonny Dykes said he expects Stuckey to be healthy for the start of fall camp.

Stuckey played for the Aggies under offensive coordinator Jake Spavital, who now holds that position at Cal.

Previously, he played at City College of San Francisco, helping his team into the California state title game as a freshman in 2012.

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Cal basketball: Bears add JC point guard

Cal got a commitment Friday from Dontae Coleman, a junior college point guard from Alabama, who will arrive on campus next fall with three years’ eligibility, according to Scout.com.

Coleman, a 6-foot-3, 188-pounder, averaged 19.9 points, 6.2 assists and 4.2 rebounds and shot 42.6 percent from the 3-point arc for Lawson State Community College in Birmingham, Alabama. The Cougars were 17-12 this season.

A native of Matthews, Georgia, Coleman was the career scoring leader at Butler High School.

Originally a Florida Atlanta commit, Coleman is expected to compete with returning point guard Sam Singer, but also may play some at shooting guard. He joins guard Tyson Jolly in Cal’s 2016 recruiting class.

He picked Cal over Cleveland State, Georgia State and Georgia Southern.

 

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Cal football: Victor Viramontes a different kind of quarterback prospect

Victor Viramontes won’t be part of a four-man spring practice battle for Cal’s quarterback job.

Viramontes, who became the Bears’ 25th and final signee on Wednesday, won’t arrive on campus until the summer, and isn’t likely to steal the job away from returnees Chase Forrest, Ross Bowers and Luke Rubenzer or fellow 2016 freshman Max Gilliam. Those four will get a head start on the competition in spring workuts.

But Viramontes, a senior at Norco High, brings a unique resume to Berkeley. He is 6-foot-1, 240 pounds, and used that power to compile crazy numbers during his prep career.

Viramontes passed for 4,680 yards and 42 touchdowns in three varsity seasons, and ran for 4,190 yards and 53 TDs. As a senior last fall, he accounted for 2,085 passing yards and 21 TDs along with 1,112 yards on the ground and 17 more TDs.

Coach Sonny Dykes is beyond intrigued by what Viramontes potentially brings to the table.

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Cal football: Bears sign 25-player recruiting class

2016 CAL FOOTBALL RECRUITING CLASS

Traveon Beck CB 5-10 160 Paramount
Had 10 interceptions on team that was 41-3 in his three varsity high school seasons

Russell Becker-x DE 6-4 255 Maple Grove, Minnesota
Totaled 15.5 sacks in 2 junior college seasons after converting from O-lineman

Camryn Bynum CB 6-1 180 Corona
Rangy defensive back becomes the fifth Centennial High product on Bears’ roster

Derrick Clark-x RB 5-11 195 San Diego
Compiled 3,916 all-purpose yards and 39 TDs in two high school varsity seasons

Jake Curhan-x OT 6-7 320 Larkspur
Regarded as an athletic run blocker after earning all-state honors for mid-size schools

Josh Drayden CB 5-11 175 DeSoto, Texas
Four-year varsity starter for powerhouse team that won 5-A state title as junior

Jordan Duncan-x WR 6-2 190 Hattiesburg, Mississippi
Caught 225 passes as prep, playing two seasons with Brett Favre as offensive coordinator

Zion Echols RB 5-10 175 Glendora
Rated the nation’s No. 14 all-purpose back, gained 6,511 yards, scored 90 TDs as prep

Nygel Edmonds CB 6-0 195 Chattanooga, Tennessee
Perhaps the Bears’ top defensive signee originally planned to attend Stanford

Marloshawn Franklin CB 6-1 185 Mesa, Arizona
JC transfer needed to complete one more class and won’t be here for spring ball

Logan Gamble WR 6-5 190 Seal Beach
A wideout & defensive end in high school, caught 67 passes for 1,136 yards as senior

Max Gilliam -x QB 6-2 200 Thousand Oaks
Dual threat had 6,333 passing yards and 69 TDs, 1,291 rushing yards 22 TDs in 2 seasons

Cameron Goode OLB 6-4 200 Spring, Texas
Father played at Oklahoma and was fifth-round draft pick but never played in NFL

Daniel Juarez OT 6-6 270 Corona
Never lost a league game at Centennial High on offense that averaged 47 points

Drew Kobayashi WR 6-3 200 Honolulu
Limited by injuries, caught 62 passes for 1,359 yards and 13 TDs in two seasons

Matt Laris WR 6-4 210 Renton, Washington
Caught 174 passes for 3,020 yards and 30 TDs in four varsity prep seasons

Tevin Paul DE 6-5 270 Austin, Texas
Had 20 career sacks on team that posted 15-1 record his senior season

Melquise Stovall-x WR 5-8 180 Lancaster
Cal’s highest-rated recruit gained 4,785 all-purpose yards in high school as back/receiver

Chinedu Udeogu DE 6-5 255 North Bethesda, Maryland
Began playing football in ninth grade after living nine years in Nigeria

Jordan Veasy-x WR 6-3 215 Gadsden, Alabama
The JC standout in Southern California is among three WR signees already on campus

Victor Viramontes QB 6-1 240 Norco
Dual-threat QB with great size rushed and passed for 4,000-plus yards each as prep

Dwayne Wallace-x OG 6-5 340 Riverside
Huge JC transfer figures to get shot at lone vacant O-line spot in spring ball

Evan Weaver DE 6-3 245 Spokane, Washington
State Player of Year after totaling 24 sacks and 1,000 rushing yards/17 TDs for 14-0 team

Gentle Williams OL 6-4 280 Florence, Mississippi
Four-year varsity player was a center in high school but could wind up at guard

Chris Yaghi DT 6-3 270 Santa Ana
Played nose tackle and fullback in high school, collecting 10 sacks as a senior

x-Midyear signees are already in school.

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Cal football: Bears reload at wide receiver on signing day

Cal announced its 25-player signing day class on Wednesday, with one unsurprising defection, two last-minute additions and eight players already on campus as mid-year enrollees.

None of those eight will be more important to the Bears in the immediate future than wide receivers Melquise Stovall, Jordan Duncan and Jordan Veasy. The trio will get a running start in spring ball as the Bears rebuild a receiving corps that lost six players who caught 256 passes last season from former quarterback Jared Goff, totaling 3,878 yards and 38 touchdowns.

The change-of-mind by three-star offensive line commit Francisco Perez to UCLA near his hometown of Baldwin Park was widely anticipated in recent days. The Bears countered that by landing running back Zion Echols and quarterback Victor Viramontes for a class that was ranked No. 38 nationally and No. 7 in the Pac-12 by Scout.com, No. 37 nationally and No. 7 in the league, according to 247.com.

Coach Sonny Dykes – like every coach in the country – said he likes the class he signed. But he acknowledged securing just one Bay Area player as the Bears could not lure either of two high-profile De La Salle standouts, defensive tackle Boss Tagaloa (UCLA) and tight end Devin Asiasi (Michigan).

“We need to get those kids,” Dykes said. “You’ve arrived as a program when you can recruit your backyard and get those kids you want. Clearly we haven’t arrived as a program.”

In Stovall, Duncan and Veasy, the Bears welcome three confident and accomplished players whose ambitions rise well above winning starting jobs when spring practice begins next month.

“That group is going to be much better than people think,” Dykes said of the new receiving corps. “They’re going to be raw, but the athleticism and speed and big-play capabilities are definitely there.”

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