Signing day has come and gone, and we really didn’t have as great as class as we had hoped. Or at least, as great as I had hoped. It certainly appears that Cal still isn’t quite a premier destination for college recruits. We still have difficulty attracting quality out of state recruits against other powerhouses, especially when USC always attempts to recruit those same players. To the non-Californian, USC is probably a more attractive destination for a variety of non-football reasons. Anyway, here’s the breakdown of where we ranked according to various sites that rank these things.
ESPN Recruiting Tracker - 40 (5th in the Pac-10)
Rivals.com (used by SI.com) - 21 (3rd in the Pac-10)
Scout.com - 12 (3rd in the Pac-10)
The best explanation for the divergence of opinion on our incoming class is because we have a rather large incoming class - either 25 or 26 commits already, depending on who you ask. ESPN seems to place more emphasis on average quality, while Rivals and Scout seem to emphasize and appreciate sheer numbers as well. This is all rather subjective of course, since no one really knows how these prospects are going to perform once they arrive on campus. It might be informative, however, to look at the actual breakdown by position of players that we recruited.
QB - 1 (Brock Mansion)
RB - 2 (Jahvid Best, Shane Vereen)
WR - 3 (Nyan Boatneg, Alex Lagemann, Mike Calvin)
TE - 2 (Skylar Curran, Savai’i Eselu)
OT - 5 (Matt Summers-Gavin, Sam DeMartinis, Mitchell Schwartz, Justin Cheadle, Cameron Jordan)
OG - 1 (Todd Huber)
C - 0
DE - 3 (D.J. Holt, Solomon Aigamaua, Robert Owusu)
DT - 0
ILB - 1 (Devin Bishop)
OLB - 3 (Alex Cook, Robert Mullins, Jason Tyndall)
CB - 2 (D.J. Campbell, Chris Conte)
S - 1 (Sean Cattouse)
The number of recruits that we have coming seems fairly even across the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. I’m looking forward to seeing how Jahvid Best does, with all that’s been written about his speed, and Nyan Boatneg’s received quite a bit of press as well. I don’t know that we have any other returning quarterbacks other than Longshore with the graduation of both Levy and Ayoob (although it’s not like anyone had heard of Levy before Ayoob imploded against Sacramento State either), but there’s probably a warm body out on campus who can throw the ball somewhere. I’m don’t know why we have so many offensive tackles - I’m not sure Tedford realizes you only need two at a time - though it seems rather likely Tedford will move a few inside, given that we recruited exactly one prospect listed as an interior lineman.
So what can we expect out of this class? Like with most Tedford classes, the immediate help will come from the Juco ranks, especially with Devin Bishop most likely already slated to take over for his big brother. Nyan Boatneg won’t be an immediate help since he’s a transfer and will not be eligible to play this year, though according to all the articles that have been written about him elsewhere, he should immediately be able to step in and replace most of DeSean’s production once he leaves early. And yes, he most likely will. Perhaps Skylar Curran will make an impact as a TE, something that hasn’t really happened a whole lot during the Tedford era. Other than the Juco guys, expect Best to get some touches behind Forsett (although last year’s RB class may have something to say about that as well), while Mansion will probably just sit and learn for a year behind Longshore.