All scheduled open practices have now ended. Unfortunately, I could not make it to practice after they changed the time due to a prior engagement. So! I bring to you the best of the rest via twitter and try to compile the highlights that happened on Saturday. Let’s get to it!
- The QB battle seems to be narrowing down to Ross Bowers and Brandon McIlwain. The battle still has an asterisk, as McIlwain’s eligibility has yet to be fully determined.
- Defense. Defense. Defense. The improvement of the defense has been very significant, but no position has made the biggest strides like the linebackers. The 2-deep of linebackers have a lot of names that Cal fans are familiar with, but not at those positions. Guys like Cam Saffle and Evan Weaver are already household names, but we’ll be seeing them more roaming behind the line.
- This defense is creating a lot of turnovers. Every position is hungry to make a play on the ball, but understands their role in creating those opportunities for other teammates to make plays. The easiest way to see this is the pressure that the DL forces on the OL, so that the pocket collapses and the QB has to make a quicker and off-balance throw. That in turn allows DBs like Josh Drayden, Elijah Hicks, and Jaylinn Hawkins to make plays off of them.
- It looks as though the defensive playcalling this season may not frustrate Cal fans as much as it has over the last few years. The blitzes, coverages, and variety of looks will have opposing offenses having to guess all game long.
- We may have a future DL star on our hands in Siu Fuimaono. The recruit from Okinawa may not play this upcoming season, but has shown enough to warrant playing time down the line.
- The three positions where depth will not be an issue is WR, RB, and DB. We are well set at those positions with a wealth of talent available for the coaches.
Season is two weeks away. Are you excited? What questions other than QB do you still need answered? Let us know in the comments below!