As the season inches closer day-by-day here's one last recap of our Special Teams unit.
For starters let's begin with the positive. Kanawai Noa has been a surprise at receiver and punt returner. Right now he is slated to be our starting punt returner and 2nd to 3rd X receiver. He is the highest freshman receiver in the depth chart, beating out 4 star Carlos Strickland. It seems like the word from fall camp is that the coaches love this guy. Not the most athletic but works very hard and runs clean routes.
Look for Noa to get some meaningful snaps against Grambling and other opponents the rest of the season. It's also possible we could see Bryce Treggs or Trevor Davis or Kenny Lawler
There are two fighting for the kicking position, but Matt Anderson ended up winning the job over Noah Beito. Neither has seen much action in the past seasons so hopefully someone will step up and play well. The job is there for the taking.
The punter will be senior Cole Leninger. He wasn't great last year (he struggled with consistency occasionally) but was good enough to get the job done. In an ideal situation Leninger shouldn't be seeing the field much due to an explosive offense. If needed though some big time punts to help out the defense would be nice.
Trevor Davis will return kicks again this year. Does that mean we'll see a couple more games like the Wazzu one? I sure hope so. Also returning kicks is the speedy Khalfani Muhammad. With the combination of these two back I'm expecting some big things from this return squad.
Whatever happens with special teams Cal should be fine in week one. Grambling shouldn't be much of a challenge but as the schedule gets harder we need to have the kicking spot nailed down, as that is my biggest concern right now. We'll finally see on Saturday as football is back.
Beat Grambling and Go Bears!