The Cal Football team got in a few practices before the coronavirus pandemic shut down spring sports and forced the closing of universities and workplaces across the country. We got teased with some answers of the burning questions from this past offseason but ultimately we were spurned for the safety of our student-athletes, thankfully, of course.
So with that in mind, and with a ton of time to think on these, here are some of the biggest questions that we won’t get answered thanks to no spring practice this year. Just how big an impact these questions and the countless others will have on the fall camp, if we get a fall season, is up for discussion as well but here we are:
1. How does the new offense flow?
Odds are there’s a large influx in Chase Garbers under center and those reps in spring ball would have been invaluable.
2. Who lines up at FB, TE?
The first few days of spring ball shed a bit of light with Zach Angelillo lining up and being interviewed after the first practice at fullback. Chinedu Udeogu also lined up at tight end after missing last year. How he acclimated to tight end after switching from the defensive line was a big question.
3. How much do we see Cam Bynum at safety?
We’re talking about replacing two of the Pac-12’s biggest ballhawks from the past two seasons in Ashtyn Davis and Jaylinn Hawkins — and with Bynum’s experience, rumor had it he was going to line up at cornerback and safety. Would have been terrific to see him roaming the back end but also coming down as a corner when necessary and what those looked like when deployed.
4. Same thing for Elijah Hicks. How often did he stay at cornerback or safety?
Similar situation, how much — if at all — did Hicks play in coverage at cornerback? Was he full-time safety? Either way, Hicks & Bynum are as rock solid as any other duo in the conference at this rate.
5. True freshman influence: Which youngster showed up big time?
Early enrollees are no longer far and few between but rather the norm, so getting your first glimpse at the future of the program is what spring ball is all about. Especially when a true freshman or highly-rated recruit stands out among wily veterans.
6. Which numbers changed?
This is frivolous but something that always rings true at spring camp. Jersey number changes are a big thing in sports and spring ball casts light on who swapped jersey numbers, officially.
7. Evan Weaver’s replacement plan
This one is obvious but we definitely wanted to get a glimpse of who was going to replace the massive amount of production from the All-Everything-Pac-12 player in Weaver. To say his departure leaves a hole of a ton of tackles is an understatement and who was set to become the vocal leader on the defense in his place will go unanswered.
8. Garbers control of a new offense
How does it sound? The language of a new playbook is always something hard to learn and spring ball would have given us an answer as to how quick we can expect to see Garbers obtain the Musgrave offense.
Those are my biggest questions that won’t get answered — so how about you? What other questions did you have this spring that we won’t receive answers for?