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Hardy Nickerson will graduate transfer from Cal to play for his father at Illinois

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Go Bears!

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Cal linebacker situation only gets more precarious. Middle linebacker Hardy Nickerson has made a decision to spend his final year of eligibility at Illinois playing under his father Hardy Nickerson Sr, the new defensive coordinator with the Fighting Illini.

Most importantly, Nickerson earns his degree from UC Berkeley!

Best of luck to Hardy! Thank you to you and your dad for joining the Cal Family!

As for Cal...

Nickerson's departure completes an exodus of Cal's entire linebacking corps. Jalen Jefferson graduated. Michael Barton was also a graduate transfer, staying in conference to go to Arizona. Jake Kearney retired from football due to injury. Nathan Broussard is also done with his career.

So that leaves Cal with two major linebacker contributors from last season: Devante Downs and Ray Davison. Downs has to be the favorite at middle linebacker, but there is nothing much left behind him at Mike. Davison is getting pushed by Derron Brown, and Aisea Tongilava and Hamilton Anoa'i are holding the other spot down, but this is the critical weak spot of the team particularly defensively.

Thoughts on all of this Cal fans?