Solarise is taking a much-deserved break, so I'll be filling in for him.
As we transition from an excellent 2011 class that bodes well for the future of Cal football, it's incredible to imagine that 2012 has the potential to be even better. The 2011 was very defensive-heavy, although the offensive talent shouldn't be underrated. With Cal already securing the talents of quarterback Zach Kline, it'll be interesting to see who they can add to next year's squad, which will tilt toward the offensive side of the ball.
What does Cal need?
- Offensive linemen is priority one, and offensive tackles is the most important sub-category. Everywhere down the line, we need a slot that needs to be filled, particularly with three juniors and two seniors likely to start on next year's line. Thankfully, this is a LOADED class, particularly on the West Coast.
- Four to five offensive linemen will be a necessity, and Cal will need at least three of them to be impact players if they plan to resurrect that dominating run attack that terrorized the Pac-10 a few years.
- Wide receivers will be particularly important, with Marvin Jones, Michael Calvin and Coleman Edmond moving on (and you never know if Keenan Allen leaves after his junior year). Expect three to four receivers.
- Punter is also important with Bryan Anger a senior. Cal will likely try to find another walk-on kicker to ensure Jed Barnett has steady competition when Giorgio Tavecchio graduates.
Perhaps one quality running back. This position has been stable since the beginning of the Tedford era, but more depth here couldn't hurt, considering Cal doesn't know who will start next season.
- A tight end or two. Cal has lacked a lot of oomph in their TE passing attack as of late, and despite the promise of Jacob Wark and Richard Rodgers, the Bears would love to get more versatility from their team.
- The secondary still needs a bit of shoring up. At least two or three more defensive backs are a must, just so the Bears can fill out the two-deep. Both D.J. Campbell and Sean Cattouse are seniors.
- Cal's front seven is pretty stacked after last year, but they could use maybe one more inside linebacker and another defensive tackle/rush defensive end to ensure quality depth.
Already rolling on
- Quarterback. Perfectly happy with who we got.
After the jump, we take a look at who can fill up Cal's most pressing need--offensive linemen.
Offensive linemen with Cal offers
Zach Banner, offensive tackle, Lakes (Lakewood, WA); 6'9", 310 lb
Video: Junior highlights (look for #73, see above) | Junior footage from playoffs | Sophomore highlights (look for #73) | Offensive tackle drills | Q&A in summer 2010 | Three part interview with Dan Poneman (Part I, Part II, Part III)
More news: Feature from WashingtonPreps in Rivals which reveals he has a 3.6 GPA and is the junior class president; also, an incredibly touching feature from Scout on how his biological father is Lincoln Kennedy, but his real dad is Ron Banner.
Josh Garnett, Puyallup (Puyallup, WA); offensive tackle, 6'5", 275 lb
Offers from seven of the Pac-12 schools: Cal, Oregon, Furd, UCLA, USC, and Washington schools.
Video: Workout tape (see above)
More news: Garnett gained his work ethic from his Washington Husky father ($); can project to either offensive guard or tackle in college ($); both Garnett and Banner, good friends and top Washington O-linemen prospects, have indicated they would be interested in playing with each other in college.
Kyle Murphy, San Clemente (San Clemente, CA); offensive tackle, 6'7", 270 lb
More news: Member of the 2010 All-State Underclass team by Cal Hi-Sports; feature on the Bootleg, Cardinal Scout site. 3.9 GPA, 305 lb bench and 375 lb squat, 31 inch vertical.
Andrus Peat, Corona Del Sol (Tempe, AZ); offensive tackle, 6'6", 265 lb
Offers from nine of the Pac-12 schools and 25 Division I scholarship offers overall. Clancy Pendergast is his primary recruiter.
More news: Despite the commitment by Peat's brother Todd to Nebraska, Andrus says the Huskers have as good a chance as anyone else.
Ronnie Stanley, Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, NV), offensive tackle, 6'7", 285 lb
Seven offers, including Arizona, Arkansas, Cal, Nebraska, Utah, UCLA, USC
More news: Considered top prospect in Las Vegas for 2012, Stanley's a two sport athlete but will play football in college; Q&A with Stanley. Geoffrey Gibson (from the 2010 recruiting class) is also a Bishop Gorman offensive lineman.
Freddie Tagaloa, Salesian (Richmond, CA); offensive tackle, 6'8", 300 lb
Offers from Cal, Furd and USC; Tagaloa has indicated high interest in all three schools. Also has offers from ASU, UCLA & SDSU. Tosh Lupoi is Tagaloa's main recruiter.
More news: Tagaloa feature from FOX Sports
Additional offensive linemen to watch out for
Garrett Adcock, Dallas Christian (Dallas, TX); offensive guard, 6'2", 275 lb
Stephon McCray, Bullard (Fresno, CA); offensive guard, 6'3", 300 lb
More news: Under Armour Combine Results
Jordan Simmons, Crespi (Encino, CA); offensive tackle, 6'5", 325 lb
Offers from Colorado, Florida, Miami (FL), the LA schools, and Washington. His Cal offer is probably coming soon.
Video: Isolated video of Simmons against Antwaun Woods | Junior highlights (see above) | Awesome play by Simmons | More junior highlight reel ($) | Quickie interview with Simmons after Crespi game (around 2 minutes)
Paul Thurston, Arvada West (Arvada, CO); offensive tackle, 6'5", 265 lb
Fernando Villanueva, Independence (San Jose, CA), offensive tackle, 6'6", 280 lb
No offers, but considering Cal, Oregon, USC, Washington and Alabama.
Next time, we look at the athletes we need to fill up our wide receiver depth chart.