The headliner for this week's GRW is the pickup of Buhach Colony offensive tackle Aaron Cochran. Under the leadership of Sonny Dykes, the Cal coaching staff has been able to assemble one of the better offensive line classes in recent memory.
For all the latest updates on the 2013 recruiting class leading into National Signing Day, check out the Cal football recruiting board!
Looks like Sonny Dykes and co. have been making a last second push with NSD only a few days away.
Adding Cochran, Mekari, Austin, Tandy, Johnson and Borrayo over the past 8 days, #Cal is now ranked No. 27 in the nation in recruiting— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) January 22, 2013
Even more impressive is the fact that several guys' stock seems to be rising, most notably McKinley and Mekari.
... With Mekari and Takk McKinley on track to get added stars, that number could be well inside the top 25 by Signing Day— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) January 22, 2013
Top 25 class, nothing to be unhappy about there.
Let's get started:
We've been saying it for weeks that Aaron Cochran would be the perfect asset to this already strong offensive line class. Regardless if Hunt stays, this will still be a strong O-line class. If Hunt does stay, this may be the best offensive line class we've had in years.
Cochran had kept us all anxiously awaiting his decision, and at one point seemed very likely to end up at Oklahoma. I'm happy to see that Cochran committed almost immediately after visiting the school: this means that are new facilities are doing what we hoped they'd do.
Pretty awesome that the folks over at OU aren't too happy about this.
In an interview with Jim McGill, Aaron talks about the relationship between him and his brother Matt, who will be competing to start at center for these Bears.
"I would say we're different than your average pair of brothers," said Cochran. "Matt and I are very close.
"We have our moments. It's not like we're best friends but we watch out for each other and he'll help me if I ask him for it. I'll do the same for him.
"We're kind of apart but together at the same time. We're both really individuals and very different in our personalities.
"We'll go have fun sometimes together and we'll fight like brothers, too. But it will definitely be good to come in knowing someone really well -sometimes even better than they know themselves. At the same time, he's by brother so he'll make me want to compete more.
"I'll probably get angry with him at times over th next 4-5 years but it's good to have family and someone so close to you on campus."
Jack Austin, Chino Hills wideout, also committed this week. Austin is a big body receiver who was originally committed to Boise. I love to see us adding a bit more size on the outside, especially with Cavil gone. Once again, I also love the fact that this kid committed only a few days after his visit, so the new facilities likely played a factor in that.
He seems very excited to be a Bear.
"It was an opportunity of a lifetime for me," said Austin...— Brandon Huffman (@BrandonHuffman) January 21, 2013
"I could really see Cal as my new home," said Austin. "I'd never seen the Berkeley campus before and I didn't realize how beautiful and historical all the buildings were there. It's a very beautiful place to live and go to school and I really appreciate that type of architecture and the style of the campus. That really stuck out to me."
Here's another story from McGill on Edward Tandy, Tustin linebacker commit (committed on January 18th). Tandy seems like a really great fit for our program.
"I believe that having a degree from Cal would open up so many doors for me that other college degrees just can't," said Tandy.
"Overall Cal from their athletics to their academics is the best bar none. I'm happy and blessed to have this opportunity to be a Bear and will be ready come season to make an impact," concluded Tandy.
A lot of people are really high on Tandy as a potential sleeper for this class because of his versatility.
@onelifeonemic at some point, he'll have an impact. One of my favorite recruits in this class. he can do a lot, and all of it well.— Marc Tausend (@ManBearCal) January 19, 2013
Tyler Foreman, safety from Crespi decided on UCLA after his visit this weekend. Looks like the kid wanted to stay closer to home. He cancelled his visit to Berkeley after going to UCLA this last weekend. Mora has been able to put together one of UCLA's best classes in recent years.
UCLA Gives a Hometown Feeling for Encino (Calif.) Crespi DB Tyler Foreman recruiting.scout.com/2/1259557.html— Brandon Huffman (@BrandonHuffman) January 21, 2013
However, Foreman's teammate at Crespi, defensive end Ray Davidson supposedly committed to Cal earlier this week. At least that's what his coach said. He was the guy who was forced to decommit from Northwestern because he took a visit to Berkeley several weeks ago. When asked on his commitment, Davidson said he was actually not committed yet, and will make his formal decision on NSD.
Vincent Johnson, offensive tackle from Christian Brothers is another new Bear. He was an Iowa State commit, but flipped to us last week.
Vincent Johnson, OT out of Sacramento (Calif.) Christian Brothers, has committed to #Cal.— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) January 17, 2013
#Cal commit Vincent Johnson says that the weight room at the SAHPC "blew me away"— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) January 20, 2013
Chris Gonzalez, offensive linemen from Salesian, went on an official visit to Cal this weekend. Not much word out yet on how this went.
Gonzalez appears to be an under the radar recruit. If I had to guess, I'd say that if the coaching staff offers him, he'd come- he only has one other offer at this point and that's from SJSU. I like the fact that we're continuing to add more depth to this O-line class.
Johnny Ragin, soft commit to BYU, has said that he will make his decision on Wednesday between BYU and Cal. Look out for an update on him sometime during the day.
RT @cassidy_rob: LB Johnny Ragin III, a soft commitment to BYU, will make a final decision about his future on Wednesday. BYU or Cal.— Marc Tausend (@ManBearCal) January 20, 2013
Looks like Dykes and Buh did an in-home with Ragin last night. Looks like they really want him.
CAL DC Buh and HC Dykes did an in home visit tonight with Johnny Ragin, a LB from Wilsonville HS in Oregon.— Taylor Barton (@TaylorBarton12) January 22, 2013
Cameron Hunt is still an uncertainty. He apparently really loved Oregon during his official there last week. As of now, it seems to be between us, Oregon, and Ohio State.
2013 OT Cameron Hunt, 6-foot-5, 275-pounder has a top three: Cal, OSU and Oregon. ohiostate.247sports.com/Article/Camero…— Ohio State Football (@TheShoeAtOSU) January 21, 2013
Hunt will be in Berkeley this Friday for his final official visit, making this one of the most important OV weekends of the year. I still like our chances on getting him, especially with Chip Kelly's recent departure. I'm not banking on anything though after last year.
Some interesting reports are coming out about what the coaching staff is asking of De La Salle linebacker commit Victor Egu. Apparently they want him to switch to DE, and are threatening to retract their commitment if he doesn't do so. Not sure if this report is true.
Also a few little sneak peeks into next year: Cal coaches took a visit to see a local dual threat quarterback in Novato's Manny Wilkins. Freedom RB Joe Mixon (perhaps the top target for 2014) also took an unofficial to Cal.