In the wake of yet another loss to USC and an otherwise dismal Cal football weekend, good news arrived on Sunday evening with the verbal commitment of Lakes, Washington athlete Cedric Dozier to Cal. Word got out courtesy of Dozier's Facebook post...proving yet again that technology is taking over the world and it's only a matter of time until Skynet becomes self-aware. The commitment story over on Bear Insider has some tasty quotes:
"Everything's set at Cal. The offense will have lots of threats and our defense has been good. It's just that the offense has struggled at times. But with recruits like Bryce Treggs, Zach Kline and myself and some other guys, we'll get it going."
Cal beat out PAC-12 foes such as Oregon, Washington, and the Arizona schools for Dozier's services. So what does Cedric's commitment mean for Cal and what kind of player are we getting? Info and video after the jump.
Position: ATH (WR, CB)
Weight: 175 lbs
- Scout.com - 4-star, #20 CB Nationally
- Rivals.com - 4-star, #8 ATH Nationally
- 247sports - 3-star ATH (87 Rating)
- ESPN - 3-Star, # 52 ATH Nationally (78 Scout Grade)
Dozier is a TRUE athlete. He plays quarterback, wide receiver, running back, and defensive back for his Lakes High School team, and he plays all of them well. AT THE SAME TIME! Not really, but the kid does have some serious ball skills. Lakes runs a read-option offense similar to Oregon's, so it makes sense to have a guy with Dozier's athleticism touching the ball as often as possible. In the 2010 season, Dozier passed for 1181 yards, 13 TDs and 7 INTs. He also ran for 1223 yards and 17 TDs. That's a lot of offense from one guy.
Thus far during the 2011 season, Dozier has had more of an opportunity to showcase his receiving skills, playing a few more snaps at WR. That's nice, because while other schools were offering Dozier as an ATH, he will be coming to Cal to play wide receiver. Many see Dozier as more of a cornerback or safety based on his size and quickness, but I think playing him on offense is the way to go. He's too much of a playmaker with the ball in his hands to stick him on defense. He's a peacock...YOU GOTTA LET HIM FLY! Also, he apparently made a trip down to Berkeley in June and ran some routes with Zach Kline. His display during that little game of catch was enough for the Cal coaching staff to assure Dozier that he will be brought in as a WR. I guess they liked what they saw. Plus, Kline seems excited about having a guy like Dozier at his disposal in the coming years (also from the BI article):
"He told me today he was going to commit and I was extremely excited," said Kline. "We need guys like him to put us on the road to the Rose Bowl and the national championship and be the best class that Cal's ever seen. He's a vital piece of that.
"Cedric's got a ton of speed and he's super-quick. He catches it out in front of his body and has get breaks. He's a very good receiver. He's another huge threat we'll have."
Here are some quick highlights of Dozier from Lakes' game vs Wilson earlier this month. There's also a short interview with him at the end too, which is funny in hindsight. I like this video because even though it's a pretty small sample size (one game), we get to see him doing a lot of different things.
2011 Highlights vs. Wilson:
Not bad, huh? Obviously its a very limited sample size with regard to Dozier doing WR things, but I think that's okay. He's clearly quick and agile, and runs a good route. He's physical on defense too, and I love his aggression. Give me a slot WR who plays physically any day, be it on short slants or the occassional jet sweep. Playing some QB shows he's a smart football player too, especially when you consider he's piloting a read-option offense. It doesn't hurt to be versatile these days. In the below video (from the 2010 season), Dozier really shows off his running ability, quickness and vision. He finds space and makes defenses pay. Players gonna play:
Be excited, folks. Dozier is an elite athlete, and a guy who can do so many things at a high level can be a real weapon. Let's worry about where he fits in schematically once he's on campus. This is a great get for Cal. And selfishly, I never get tired of yanking recruits from the Huskies...especially right out of their backyard. We drink your milkshake, Huskies. We drink it up! Speaking of which...yes, Zach Banner also plays for Lakes HS...just in case anyone was wondering who that man-child in the highlight vids was. Couldn't hurt to have just gotten a commitment from his teammate, right?
Welcome to Cal, Cedric. Go Bears!
Commitment story links:
BearInsider.com - Dozier follows his heart to Cal
What does Cedric Dozier's commitment mean for 2012 class? ($)