Signing day is quickly approaching, and Cal is closing with some serious momentum, picking up a commitment - their 7th in 10 days - earlier tonight from linebacker Johnny Ragin III from Wilsonville, Oregon. Rather than citing the usual sources, we'll just let you read his own words.
I'd like to sincerely thank all the coaches, fans and everyone throughout the country who has supported me through this process.— Johnny Ragin III (@Glory_IIIERA) January 24, 2013
And I'm not one to go back on my word, so this is difficult for me. But ultimately, I have to do what I feel's best for my family and I.— Johnny Ragin III (@Glory_IIIERA) January 24, 2013
With that being said, I have decommitted from BYU and have officially committed to #Cal. Go Bears!— Johnny Ragin III (@Glory_IIIERA) January 24, 2013
Well spoken, and classily done. Welcome to the #CalGang, Johnny!
Greg Biggins thinks the Bears came out huge winners, by the way.
Tough loss for BYU, big pickup for Cal, Johnny Ragin was easily among the most underrated prospects in the west region this year— Greg Biggins (@GregBiggins) January 24, 2013
ESPN: 4 star (80), 56th ranked athlete, 4th ranked in Oregon
247sports: 3 star (86), 62nd ranked outside linebacker, 4th ranked in Oregon
Scout: 3 star, 64th ranked outside linebacker
Rivals: 3 star, 4th ranked in Oregon
A Quick Look:
Ragin is, quite simply, a freak. At 6'2", 210 pounds, he posted a 4.71 40 and a 33.8 inch vertical jump at his SPARQ combine earlier this year, part of a combined performance that saw him rank 1st out of over 600 other competitors, and 24th nationwide. While he played both sides of the ball for Wilsonville, he will be on the defensive - likely at linebacker - in Berkeley, so keeping that in mind, let's take a look at the tape [conveniently split up for those interested!]
Outstanding usage of the "All Gold Everything" instrumental aside, Ragin immediately pops out on this film as a player that craves contact. Most ballcarriers are not only chased down, but slammed into the ground, as well. Ragin hits. Hard. [Best example of this comes at 1:28, but also at 2:05]
He uses his athleticism quite impressively, showcasing an explosive burst not only in his pass-rush, but in running down players on the opposite side of the field, as well [1:10, 1:58, 2:19, 3:00]. Although it might be cliche to say this, those plays are also indicators of a great motor. Ragin is also rarely impeded for long in these clips, displaying good block-shedding ability, strong instincts for the ball and for positioning in doing so - all of which will serve him well at linebacker.
With Ragin's addition, the Bears now have a log-jam of linebackers coming in for '13. One situation worth monitoring in light of Ragin's commitment is Victor Egu, who has apparently been asked to play defensive end under the new staff.
What do you think of Ragin? Sound off below.