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Cal football: Remembering Chris Harper

We remember the one California Golden Bear who declared early.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

What are your fondest memories of Chris Harper?

Avinash Kunnath: Harper always wanted to come to Cal. It was his dream school. The moment Cal offered he was quick to flip out of his SMU commitment. It turned out to be a huge signing, as he became Cal's most productive member of the dream receiving class. Harper immediately filled in to be the second option on the other side of Keenan Allen. He showed he had the tools to execute even if he didn't offer elite physical measurables.

I'm not sure if Harper would have excelled more in the Tedford offense or the Dykes offense--he was really productive in Year 1, ditto in Year 2, then tailed off a bit as everyone else in the rotation caught up and distributed the workload between each other. Harper was extremely skilled, but so is pretty much everyone else in our rotation, so it was hard for him to stand out the way he did in previous seasons. It made sense for him to declare a year early before even more talent arrived and further distributed everyone out.

Now I'm really hoping Harper doesn't go undrafted. The kid is really talented and an excellent tactician, so I imagine he will be at least an unsigned free agent somewhere. I think just like with his unheralded status coming into Cal, Harper will have to do some extra legwork to find his place in the league. The good thing is that he's used to it, and he's excelled coming out of that role.

Trace Travers: From the WR Class of 2012, Harper is the guy that came out the gate the fastest. He was 2nd in pretty much every receiving category in 2012 and proved that he was a guy who could be a top receiver in the future. My favorite play of his was a catch against Colorado last year. On 3rd and 10, Goff went for the deep ball, and Harper burned his man to haul in the 40 yard TD to put us up late. The rapport Harper formed with both QBs he played with sets him up well for a hopefully fruitful NFL career.

Leland Wong: Harper will undoubtedly shine brightest among this group in the memories of most fans. He made an immediate impact on the team as a true freshman and was often one of our most dangerous receivers on the field. While his production diminished as our quarterbacks had more targets, it was always just a matter of time until he made some crazy highlight-reel catch. We're deep at receiver, but we'll miss his reliable play-making ability; while it looks like an uphill battle for him to earn a spot on an NFL roster, I think his abilities will make that fight a fun one for us to watch while we cheer him on.