If Mike Manuel keeps impressing the coaches like he did yesterday, the walk-on running back will earn his scholarship. Manuel only played three games his senior season and was going to sign with Cincinatti until Tedford offered him a walk-on role with Cal. Tedford told Manuel that if he competed every day and worked hard, the scholarship situation would sort itself out.
Despite all the current Cal tailbacks who came to Berkeley as top recruits, a walk-on who barely played his senior year of high school is making the biggest impact this spring.
Mike Manuel, a transfer from Golden West Community College, has opened the eyes of the coaching staff and is in the mix to be in the playing rotation this fall.
Manuel showed good burst on a 35-yard run during the Bears' first scrimmage of the spring Saturday at Grant High. He also scored on a short touchdown run.
"He continues to impress," Cal coach Jeff Tedford said. "He runs with great balance. He's very hard to knock off his feet. It's very hard for one guy to bring him down. He runs through tackles. He's solid."
Sophomore Dasarte Yarnway and redshirt freshman Trajuan Briggs each came to Cal with press clippings, but Yarnway is sitting out this spring as he recovers from ACL surgery and Briggs is behind Manuel on the depth chart. Briggs is also battling back from ankle and back injuries. The Bears also have junior Covaughn DeBoskie-Johnson, who chose Cal over many suitors out of high school.
After the jump JO reports from practice, Sandy Barbour begins the search for Joanne Boyle's replacement, and Bears past and present react to baseball's reinstatement.
- JO reports from Saturday's practice. On offense Allan Bridgford, Mike Manuel, Michael Calvin, Kaelin Clay, and Spencer Hagan stood out. The defense was led by Ernest Owusu, Michael Coley, and Marc Anthony.
- Several former and future Bears watched practice, including Syd'Quan Thompson, Shaq Thompson, Tiny Moala, Puka Lopa, and Todd Barr
- Sandy Barbour has begun the search for Joanne Boyle's replacement and would like to hire a coach as soon as possible. She believes she can sustain the Bears' tremendous success under Boyle with a solid replacement.
- Assistant coach Tom Billups and the freshmen-sophomore team faced a stiff challenge against Santa Rosa Junior College. The Bears prevailed 31-21.
- The Bears opened Pac-10 play with a 10-0 win over Washington on Friday night. A walk-off home run in the eighth inning gave no. 6/7 Washington a 2-1 win over the no. 9/12 Bears on Saturday.
- The no. 10 men's team's three-match winning streak was snapped against Washington. On Friday they swept Oregon 7-0.
- The seventh-ranked women's team topped Fresno St 6-1. They also defeated no. 23 Washington.