Monday, March 05, 2007

ALEX MACK AT TACKLE, AND OTHER INTERESTING ITEMS

Jay Heater's been making up for lost time, with a flurry of posts since his return from vacation last week. With Jay's stuff, you usually have to read between the lines a little bit, so we'll provide you with some helpful interpretation.

OL
What do you do with a returning all-conference center? Move him to tackle, of course. That's what Jay says Coach Mich wants to do with Alex Mack, making room for the very talented Mark Gray to crack the starting lineup. Or maybe Chris Guarnero, who Coach Mich seems to love. Elsewhere, Jay calls out De la Puente and Malele, which is probably a good idea. Favorite quote - Kevin Bemoll "has natural strength equal to Ryan O'Callaghan."

Subtext: Mich is sending a public message to Mike Tepper to get his ass in gear this spring. If he doesn't, then Mack might switch - but I wouldn't bet on it. Guarnero sounds like the real deal - why not have him and Bemoll push Malele and De la Puente for starting roles? Seems odd to have three very promising linemen in the center depth chart.

DBs
According to Heater, DeCoud will stick at safety and fight it out with lots of returners for playing time. Also, Robert Peele is apparently a safety. Huh.

Subtext: Darian Hagan is really good, and so are our other guys who haven't received much attention (Amadi, Brandon Jones). I just don't see Jesse Brooks starting at corner. In any event, Cal should have good nickel and dime packages with this type of depth.

LBs
Heater sees Moye and Felder fighting it out at the SLB position. If Felder doesn't win that fight as a junior, then something's wrong. Justin Moye is a fine football player, and the Bears could do much worse at Sam - but he's not the athlete that Felder is. Alex Cook merits only a single reference at the end of the entry, and Heater seems to imply that he'll be in the depth chart at Will (or weakside linebacker). Coach Thompson also said that Eddie Young is pushing to start at Sam.

Subtext: The coaches aren't going to anoint anyone before he straps it up for spring practice, which is why Cook got barely a mention. It's a deep chart full of good athletes, so Coach Thompson spreads the love around in the hopes that competition begets improvement all around.

3 Comments:

At 4:10 PM, Blogger Pete Morris said...

Interesting to see no mention of the incoming freshmen on the O-line, although both Best and Vereen appear to be in the tailback mix as true freshmen. No surprise with the former, but I figured Vereen was a guaranteed red-shirt (blue shirt?) with all those other guys ahead of him. Indeed, with all I've been reading about Vereen, I'm beginning to think the coaches see him as the real "sleeper" of this class.

The depth at fullback, though, would seem to be a big concern. Tedford's offense is at its strongest when spearheaded by a blocking fullback, but should injury strike, having that year of Dunbar in the back pocket might actually come in handy should the Bears need to rely on more fullback-less sets.

 
At 9:18 PM, Blogger Tightwad said...

Vereen's a sleeper indeed - lots of programs could regret recruiting him as a corner.

I hope we don't see as much of the one back this year, and I was encouraged by the FB blocking we saw in the HB. Cal is thin there, though.

I continue to think that one of the freshman DEs will surprise us and perhaps be the biggest frosh contributors (along with one of the two backs). My money's on Scott Smith.

 
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