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Golden Recruiting Wire: The Grant Union Team Coming to Cal?

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September 2, 2010


Quote of the week

  • Shaq Thompson, ATH Grant Union (Sacramento, CA) {2012}

    "Most of my teammates, like (Viliami) Moala, (James) Sample, and Puka (Lopa), are all talking about going to play at Cal. I'm thinking about joining them at Cal, but Puka really likes Oregon. I've been hearing from Cal, USC, UCLA, UNLV, and Tennessee recently. I"m going to try and visit Cal, UCLA, USC, and Miami this year if I can."



  • Todd BarrHardy Nickerson Jr., LB Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland, CA) {2012} 6-0/220lbs is getting noticed and could become a national recruit [1]. Nickerson Jr. was named to the All-East Bay Preseason Football Team [2] and Bay Area's Top 25 Players to Watch [3].

    Hardy "The Dragon" Nickerson Sr. (Cal '89) played 16 seasons in the NFL. He was named to 5 Pro Bowls and NFL 1990s' All-Decade Team. Nickerson Sr. is the current Head Coach of Bishop O'Dowd.

Friday Night Lights

  • Archbishop Mitty Monarchs (San Jose, CA) defeated Pioneer 34-7 [4]. Kyle Boehm, QB (Cal) went 15-17, 228yds, and 2 TDs while carried 8 times for 141yds and 1 TD.
  • The Woodlands Highlanders (The Woodlands, TX) was victorious against Fort Bend Hightower 46-39.[5]. Daniel Lasco, RB (Cal) sat out the game w/ a high ankle sprain sustained from the season opener.
  • <a class=Northern Guilford Nighthawks (Greensboro, NC) lost to Dudley 14-15 [6]. Maurice Harris, WR (Cal) caught a TD in the first half but was limited otherwise.
  • Mustafa JalilCathedral Catholic Dons (San Diego, CA) lost to Steele Canyon 12-35 in its season opener [7]. Mustafa Jalil, DL (Cal) was held in check for most of the game.
  • Todd BarrLakewood Lancers (Lakewood, CA) defeated LA Locke 49-0. Todd Barr, DT caused a fumble in addition to getting two sacks in the shutout [8].

    Game highlights -

  • Brennan ScarlettCentral Catholic Rams (Portland, OR) w/ Brennan Scarlett, DE/TE lost to Lake Oswego Lakers 19-38 [9].
  • <a class=Marqise LeeSerra Cavaliers (Gardena, CA) w/ Marqise Lee, ATH and Jason Gibson, OLB won decisively against Sherman Oaks Notre Dame 34-7.
  • Devon BlackmonSummit Skyhawks (Fontana, CA) defeated Etiwanda in a heavily contested game 42-35. Besides his rushing and passing contributions at QB, Devon Blackmon, ATH also sealed the win w/ an interception [10][11][12].

    Blackmon interviewed [13] -

  • Palo Verdes Panthers (Las Vegas, NV) defeated Liberty Patriots 24-21 [14]. Brandon Wright, RB/DB finished finished with 28 rushes for 186 yards and two touchdowns in the close win.

    "The game has kind of slowed for Brandon right now," Rost said. "He's so far ahead of the game. It's kind of like having a coach on the field with his leadership and firing everybody up [15]."

  • The King's Academy Knights (San Jose, CA) defeated Evergreen Valley 41-6 [16]. Amir Carlisle, RB excelled w/ 12 carries, 221yds, and 2 TDs in the win.

    "Geez, Louise! We hit him [Carlisle] in the backfield, he spins out of it, he hops over people, he breaks tackles. He is something special [17]."

  • George Atkinson IIIGranada Matadors (Livermore, CA) prevailed against Patterson Tigers 27-6 [18]. George Atkinson III, ATH rushed for over 70yds and had a 80yds TD run called back due to a penalty.
  • Aaron GreenJames Madison Mavericks (San Antonio, TX) lost to Kerrville Tivy 34-39 [19]. Aaron Green, RB ran for 217yds and 2 TD on a sprained ankle. One of Green's TDs was a 85yds run. Photo galleries [20][21].
  • Colt LyerlaHillsboro Spartans (Hillsboro, OR) dispatched Liberty 46-12 w/o Colt Lyerla, ATH [22]. Lyerla hasn't practiced enough in the preseason to be eligible.
  • Vista Panthers (Vista, CA) triumphed over Mira Mesa Marauders 21-14 [23]. Stefan McClure, CB played WR on offense. He rushed twice for 41 yards on and hauled in a couple of passes for 71 yards. On defense, McClure had an interception and broke up three passes. Two of McClure's broken passes were on back-to-back plays with less than a minute left.
  • DeAnthony ArnettSaginaw Trojans (Saginaw, MI) started the season 0-2 as they lost to Midland Chemics 20-63 [24]. DeAnthony Arnett, WR was doubled-teamed all night and finished w/ 2 catches for 26yds.


Tedford & Company

  • Mustafa JalilMustafa Jalil, DT (Cal) profiled [25].

    Cathedral Catholic coach Sean Doyle said the Dons coaching staff took notice of Jalil his freshman year. He played most of the year on the junior varsity, and was a just-in-case late season playoff call-up.

    That insurance policy paid huge dividends, when an injury forced Doyle to play Jalil for most of the 2007 San Diego Section Div. III title game. Jalil more than held his own in a 41-3 victory over Point Loma of San Diego.

    "And he's been pretty darn good ever since," Doyle said.

    Jalil's older brother Abu Jalil now plays at Div. II New Mexico Highlands. The Jalil brothers were Cathedral Catholic teammates two years ago.

    "He's extremely strong and explosive and he's got great drive," Doyle said of what sets Mustafa Jalil apart. "He wants to get to the ball every time."

  • Daniel Lasco, RB (Cal) profiled [26].

    While on vacation in California Lasco had a schedule full of meetings with the top Pac-10 schools but by the time the plane hit the ground all but one of those visits were cancelled.

    "I realized I really just wanted to visit Cal," Lasco said. "Once we got there and we talked to the coaches I just felt really comfortable there. I fell in love with the campus. It was the first time I went somewhere and it felt right like a place I could spend the next five years.

    "Another thing I liked is that we talked to the coaches for an hour-and-a-half and more than half of it was about academics. That is my number one thing and something I really look forward to."

  • Jordan RigsbeeJordan Rigsbee, OG (Cal) and his Vikings graduated key contributors and looks much younger this year. They will be relying on Rigsbee to lead the team [27].
  • Richard RodgersRichard Rodgers, TE (Cal) returns as the Defensive MVP to lead his St. John's Pioneers to repeat as State of MA Division 1-A champions [28].

    "He's a tremendous leader," Andreoli [John, Head Coach of St John's] said. "He leads by example in the way he practices. He practices very hard and does all the little things you need to do for good players to become great players."

  • <a class=Jon Lewis, DE Klein Oak (Spring, TX) profiled [29].

    Lewis also plans on visiting Alabama, Oklahoma State, Oregon and Texas Tech – where his brother, Chris, is a freshman student.

    "If I were to fall in love with a school, I would verbally commit right then and there," Lewis said.

    Lewis made his Lone Star State football debut last season; he moved to Houston from Clovis, Calif. (a suburb of Fresno) after his father moved to accept a job as a Chaplain at Ben Taub Hospital.

  • Jalen JeffersonJalen Jefferson, ATH St Bonaventure (Ventura, CA) and his Seraphs will take on Long Beach Poly Jackrabbits this week [30]. Both the Seraphs (#7) and Jackrabbits (#5) are highly-ranked in the CIF Southern Section.
  • Avery wallsAvery Walls, S Eagles Landing Christian Academy (McDonough, GA) had a great official visit to Michigan [$31]. Oregon is next on his schedule on October 2nd.
  • Jason GibsonJason Gibson, OLB Serra (Gardena, CA) interviewed [32]. UCLA may be leading Gibson's recruiting [33] and while USC hasn't been in touch. Gibson is visiting Berkeley for the Cal-UCLA Homecoming Game October 9th, joining Avery Walls and Jalen Jefferson.

  • Viliami MoalaJames SampleViliami Moala, DT, James Sample, S Grant Union (Sacramento, CA) officially visited ASU together with Puka Lopa and Darryl Paulo [$34]. They would like to play together in college if they could.
  • Brennan ScarlettBrennan Scarlett, DE/TE Central Catholic (Portland, OR) may line up in the wildcat formation just to help his team win [35].

  • Todd BarrTodd Barr, DT may have Cal as a slight favorite over UCLA [36]. He will be visiting Florida the weekend of October 9th when Cal hosts its Homecoming game against UCLA [37].
  • Cyrus HobbiCyrus Hobbi, OG Saguaro (Scottsdale, AZ) already visited Oregon State and Washington. He will officially visit Nebraska October 16 and is considering Cal and USC for official visits [38].
  • Brandon Wright, RB/DB Palo Verdes (Las Vegas, NV) Rivals highlights [39]. Cal is recruiting Wright as an athlete while he would like to be a running back in college.

  • DeAnthony ArnettDeAnthony Arnett, WR Saginaw (Saginaw, MI) is visiting Tennessee this weekend [$40]. He is adding Oklahoma to his official visits [41].
  • Amir Carlisle, RB The King's Academy (San Jose, CA) is officially visiting USC this weekend against Virginia [$42].
  • Frank Clark, ATH Glenville (Akron, OH) reiterated Cal & UNC as leaders. He received calls from Michigan, Michigan State, UCLA, LSU and Ohio State on September 1st [43].

    "I enjoyed both of their campuses," Clark said. He had six tackles and a sack against Dwyer. "I thought both of them were pretty great. It's going to be a hard decision at the end of the day of what colleges I want to visit and what college I want to attend."

    Clark plans on scheduling his official visits in November, with a final decision coming late in the process.

    "First off, academics," Clark said of what he's looking for in a school. "Secondly, the athletics program. After that, everything comes into play."

  • Danny SheltonDanny Shelton, DT Auburn (Auburn, WA) is expected to play both ways at OL/DL in the Trojans' run for the state title [44]. Washington holds a slight lead on Shelton's recruiting over Cal, Oregon, UCLA [$45].

    One big transformation took place in the offseason – Shelton’s body shape.

    He decided to go out for wrestling at Auburn. Once 320 pounds, he shed nearly 40 pounds in a month to get to the weight limit for his new sport.

    "I really joined to have fun. I started conditioning and losing weight," Shelton said. "In pickup football games, I was faster. So I started competing more ... and taking (wrestling) seriously."

    Shelton said he altered his diet: "I just ate less instead of eating bad. For lunch, I’d have a roll or a sandwich wrap, and I drank lots of water."

    He was a surprise Class 4A semifinalist at Mat Classic, the state wrestling championships. And he’s stuck with it – he even attended the Oregon State wrestling camp in between football activities last summer.

    "He’s back up to 295, and that is a lot better (than 320). He has a better body, which has helped him. He should run better," Elliott said. "I expect him to be a complete lineman [46]."

  • Colt LyerlaColt Lyerla, ATH Hillsboro (Hillsboro, OR) profiled [47].

    Once basketball season ended — Lyerla is a power forward for the Spartans — he began working out three days a week with Mark McLaughlin, founder of the Performance Training Center in West Linn, Ore.

    On Mondays, he’d do box jumps to build explosive power and follow that with some sort of weight training, like squats. Wednesdays included ab work, circuit training and football-specific conditioning drills, like a series of five-second sprints designed to simulate the pace of a football game. Fridays involved more weight training.

    Lyerla quickly built power and quickness through the workouts, which he has continued with McLaughlin. They’ve also helped him post some downright nasty numbers at combines — he boasts a 39.5-inch vertical and has been clocked at 4.55 seconds in the 40-yard dash. A kid as big as Lyerla delivering those types of measurables just ain’t fair.

    "He’s hands-down the best athlete I’ve worked with," says McLaughlin, who trained New York Giants tight end Kevin Boss. "Physically, he’s ready for the NFL right now."

    "He’s a freak," adds Matthews.

  • Brendon BigelowBrendon Bigelow, RB Central East (Fresno, CA) held out of Friday night's game pending a MRI [48]. It might be precautionary or the tweaked knee from scrimmage a couple of weeks back could be more serious than originally anticipated.
  • Ray DrewRay Drew, DE Thomas County Central (Thomasville, GA) profiled [49]. Cal contacted Drew on September 1st [50].

    During a recruiting pitch from Florida, coach Urban Meyer threw out the comparison to former Gators star Brandon Spikes. Georgia sent along a DVD of Dallas sack king DeMarcus Ware in that role of standup end in the 3-4 scheme, clearly implying that Drew could fill that role if he signed with the Bulldogs. Their new defensive coordinator, Todd Grantham, was a Cowboys' assistant last year.

    "They're all seeing the potential he can have," said Bill Shaver, the coach at Thomas County Central. "The college game is much more geared to the passing game than we are in south Georgia. We're still a run-oriented area. The pass rush is what he does best. That's the way most people envision him: putting pressure on the passer."

  • George Atkinson IIIGeorge Atkinson III, ATH named to All-East Bay Preseason Football Team [51]. Josh was also honored. They are both visiting South Bend this weekend for the Notre Dame-Michigan game [52].
  • Matt Williams, OT North Dakota State College of Science (Wahpeton, ND) is #46 of Rivals Top 50 JUCO Players [53].
  • Antoine ArnoldDevon BlackmonAntoine Arnold, WR Chaparral (Temecula, CA), Devon Blackmon, ATH Summit (Fontana, CA) named to All-Area team [54].
  • George Atkinson IIIKyle Boehm, QB (Cal), Byron Marshall, RB Valley Christian (San Jose, CA) {2012}, George Atkinson III, ATH, Amir Carlisle, RB named Bay Area's Top 25 Players to Watch [55].
  • Mustafa JalilMustafa Jalil, DT (Cal), Stefan McClure, CB named San Diego North County's Elite 11 players [56].
  • DeAnthony ArnettTodd BarrDevon BlackmonRay DrewAaron GreenJason GibsonChristian HeywardCyrus HobbiColt LyerlaMarqise LeeViliami MoalaDeAnthony Arnett, WR, Todd Barr, DT, Devon Blackmon, ATH, Ray Drew, DE, Aaron Green, RB, Jason Gibson, OLB, Christian Heyward, DT, Cyrus Hobbi, OG, Colt Lyerla, ATH, Marqise Lee, ATH, Viliami Moala, DT named Associated Press Top 100 Recruits [57].
  • Aaron GreenJames SampleDanny SheltonNathan BroussardLavonte BarnettAaron Green, RB, James Sample, S, Danny Shelton, DT, Frank Clark, WR, Nathan Broussard, DE/LB Plano West (Plano, TX), Brandon Wright, RB/DB, Lavonte Barnett, DE Paraclete (Lancaster, CA) are among the recruits  who could pledge to Cal next according to SF Examiner [58].
  • Ray DrewStephone Anthony, OLB Anson (Wadesboro, NC) contacted by Cal [59]. Anthony is #25 on Rivals100, #27 on ESPN150, and #37 on
  • Marqise LeeMarqise Lee, ATH Serra (Gardena, CA) interviewed [60] and profiled [61]. He is playing both WR and S this season and drawing comparisons to George Farmer.

    Lee was recently offered by USC. He and Farmer will most likely play together at the next level [62].

    During the off-season when college coaches received Lee's 2009 highlights, he began getting offers from many of the top programs in the nation. Florida offered, Michigan offered, LSU offered, Miami offered, most of the Pac-10 schools offered, except USC and UCLA.

    Some believe the reason USC and UCLA didn't offer was Lee expressed a strong desire to leave California for college in every interview he did.

  • Christian HeywardChristian Heyward, DT Pointe Loma (San Diego, CA) is expected to anchor the Pointers' defensive line [63]. Heyward plans to visit Arizona, Oregon, and Miami [64].
  • Miles ShulerShaq Thompson, ATH {2012} photo gallery [65]. He hasn't played competitive baseball since he was 10 but started for the Pacers at Center Field and Pitcher last year [66].

    "Most of my teammates, like (Viliami) Moala, (James) Sample, and Puka (Lopa), are all talking about going to play at Cal," said Thompson. "I'm thinking about joining them at Cal, but Puka really likes Oregon. I've been hearing from Cal, USC, UCLA, UNLV, and Tennessee recently. I"m going to try and visit Cal, UCLA, USC, and Miami this year if I can [67]."

    Thompson was spectacular at running back and said he’s just warming up to the idea of playing that position. Most colleges recruiting him - he said USC has recently expressed lots of interest - like him at wide receiver or defensive back. He’s learning on the go and doing a fine job with it.

    "This is my first game at running back and (coaches) see I run hard but I think I could have run a little bit harder," Thompson said. "I just ran for yardage and not big runs [68]."

  • Bryce Treggs, WR St John Bosco (Bellflower, CA) {2012} started off the season w/ a big game, defeating Mission Hills 47-21. Treggs is considered one of the top recruits out West in 2012 [$69].
  • Thomas Johnson, ATH Skyline (Dallas, TX) {2012} is out for 2-3 weeks with a high ankle sprain [70]. He injured himself on the first play of the second half in the season opener and finished with one carry for 12yds and one catch for 33yds [71]. Johnson will be attending games at Oklahoma, Texas & Texas A&M this year [72]. He may play either WR/DB at the next level [73].
  • Todd BarrD.J. Humphries, OT Mallard Creek (Charlotte, NC) {2012} 6-5/265lbs offered by Cal [74]. LSU, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Ohio State are recruiting him the hardest. Humphries plans to go to South Carolina and check out the game against Georgia this weekend.
  • Miles Shuler, ATH Long Branch (Long Branch, NJ) has top 7 of Florida, Michigan, Nebraska, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Pittsburg, Rutgers [$75]. Cal eliminated.


Montgomery's Crew

  • Juan Anderson, SF 6-6/200 Castro Valley (Castro Valley, CA) mixtape [76]. He was named MVP of the NorCal Clash Tourney. He has set up visits to Cal, Oregon, Marquette, and Arizona State.

  • Norvel Pelle, PF 6-8/180 Price (Compton, CA) profiled [77].

    Pelle has a great frame for a center combined with impressive athletic tools. At 6'9 he has all the requisite height, especially for this level, but really has great length. His wingspan is that of somebody 7'1 and he has really big hands. 

    Norvel has great jumping ability, but perhaps more importantly gets off the ground extremely quickly. Most guys his size have to sort of windup for their jumps but Norvel sort of glides effortlessly off the floor. His jumping ability and wingspan combine to give him predictably great shot blocking ability. He can block shots as a trailer on the fast break, tip balls off big men trying to do post moves and is great at rotating over to block the shots of penetrating guards. At the very least Norvel alters almost all shots. 

  • David Kravish, PF 6-9/200 Lee's Summit North (Lee's Summit, MO) is expected to visit the Iowa Hawkeyes this weekend [78].
  • Jabari Brown, SG 6-3/205 Oakland (Oakland, CA) profiled [79].

    Jabari has incredible leaping ability. Even at 6'4 he is constantly playing above the rim and flies around the court. If given too much room going to the basket he can soar up and posterize his man. If unchecked on offensive boards Jabari will leap over players much bigger then him for tip ins and put backs. He is able to get great separation and space on his jumper because by simply jumping he can create so much space in between him and his man.

    Brown has world class speed and quicknesses that give him the potential to be an incredible defender. Jabari is so strong and fast that when he really wants to be he is the best on ball defender in the state. His lateral quickness is so great that he can move step for step even with the quickest, best ball handlers in California. He is able to deny opposing shooting guards perimeter looks by playing them extremely tight because most guys simply can't get around him. He'll use his body to prevent his man from getting to the rim on him and can make blocks at the basket. Jabari has quick hands and will poke away a steal now and then too. 

Previous Golden Recruiting Wires 

August 24, 2010 | August 19, 2010 | August 12, 2010 | August 5, 2010
July 28, 2010 | July 22, 2010 | July 15, 2010 | July 8, 2010