A little less than a month until fall camp. Let’s role play for a second. Pick a position group. What would you want them to be practicing and working on to build on during fall camp?
thedozen: I suppose I’m most interested in the WR group given the recent departures of Demetris Robertson and Melquise Stovall. There is still plenty of talent at the position: for instance, a lot of people are excited about what Taariq Johnson can do. Still, receivers with less experience at the collegiate level will surely be working on developing a rapport with the quarterbacks.
boomtho: I’ll go with the OL - following along on similar logic to thedozen, given the turnover at the WR position and the lack of depth behind Patrick Laird at RB, it’ll be even more important for the OL to play consistently, and at a high level, for Cal’s offense to perform reasonably well this year. There’s a ton of continuity from last year, which means the OL has a great chance of succeeding... which is good, because their play will be critical. I went back and looked at Rob’s Spring game recap (great article BTW) - it looks like we rushed 39 times for 85 yards, which is... not great, Bob. So there’s definitely some room to go!
Piotr Le: The ILBs should keep focusing on being able to beat their blocks and find the ball in the trash during run plays. Despite increased emphasis on larger bodies in the DL, the LBs will remain the keys to the run defense with run and chase responsibilities. Add the fact that they will have to deal with covering TEs, it will be fun to see our Bears in their second year in the 2 ILB system.
Joshua Morgan: I would have gone with the wide receivers, but since thedozen took that one, I’ll look somewhere else. Don’t laugh at me here, but I’m going to pick special teams. I know that a solid special teams won’t take a team from good to great, but it can make or break a lot of games for the level that we are at. Just look at the whole “10 points away from 8-4” thing that CGB has repeated over and over again. I’ll be honest: I don’t know exactly what a special teams squad can work on, but I do know that they arguably have the most work to do in practice considering that we will have new starters at both kicker and punter.
Rob Hwang: The easy answer is WRs, but my answer would be the OLBs. Practicing tracking and tackling angles along the edge will be key to our defense when our DL forces runs and quick passes to the outside. The defense made immense strides in it last year but they still lapsed into habits from the old regime. We need to weed out those habits and make sure that we’re playing with the best of basic techniques.