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Recap

Posted by Eric | November 30, 2007 at 2:18 pm | In Awards, Coaches, DeSean, Players/Alumni | 3 Comments

My apologies, but 1L is getting the best of me and the discouraging season hasn’t helped. Here’s a digest of what we’ve missed here in the past week.

Cal in the news:

  • Freshman RB Jahvid Best is probably out for the year with a hip injury.
  • WR DeSean Jackson’s bad thigh injury makes him probable to play but limited on Saturday. Also out: TE Cameron Morrah and DT Matt Malele.
  • DE Rulon Davis will be back in action for Stanford.
  • Coordinators Bob Gregory (defense) and Jim Michalczik (offense) are on the short list of candidates for WSU’s head coach. Gregory is near the top of the list.
  • Everything is not OK with Coach Jeff Tedford.

Honors:

  • East-West Shrine Game invitees: FS Thomas DeCoud, OT Mike Gibson, WR Lavelle Hawkins, RB Justin Forsett, and TE Craig Stevens
  • Senior Bowl invitees: DeCoud, Forsett, and Hawkins

Cal-related:

Chat with Nate, vote for DeSean, Cal #1

Posted by Eric | October 3, 2007 at 9:04 am | In Awards, DeSean, Players/Alumni | 1 Comment

QB Nate Longshore will be featured on an ESPN live chat today at 10:30am (in about 30 minutes). Follow the link to ask him a question or see what he has to say.

Also, WR/PR DeSean Jackson was nominated for the AT&T All-America Player of the Week award, and we can help him win by voting before 9pm tonight:

He is one of four nominees this week and in order for him to win the honor, fans must text message VOTE to 87654 by 11:59pm ET this Wednesday. Jackson was selected by ESPN based on his performance against the University of Oregon.

This also gives DeSean Jackson the opportunity to potentially be nominated for the AT&T All-America Player of the Year in December.

ESPNU Allstate Standings: 2007/10/03

Finally, it’s been pointed out that Cal is currently #1 in the ESPNU Allstate Standings (determined by fan vote). Over 100,000 votes have been cast and Cal takes the top spot, above USC and LSU [/dco]. While it’s likely that this was caused by the LSU fans leaving USC off the ballot and the LSU fans leaving USC off the ballot, it shows that Cal is a consensus contender for the national championship among fans around the country.

Cal #3, Jackson Pac-10 PotW

Posted by Eric | October 1, 2007 at 2:30 pm | In Awards, DeSean, Ranks/Predictions | 2 Comments

The Bears have reached their highest ranking since 1952: #3 in the AP, USA Today/Coaches, and Harris polls. As discussed in the post-Oregon post, Cal’s victory and the losses of last week’s #3, #4, and #5 propelled the Bears to the third spot, immediately behind LSU and USC (with USC now #2 in the AP).

Meanwhile, DeSean Jackson has received the honors for the Pac-10 Player of the Week (offense) for his amazing performance on Saturday (see video highlights, GameDay interview):

Jackson, a senior from Long Beach, Calif., provided the big plays on offense in California’s 31-24 road win at Oregon. Jackson pulled in 11 receptions for 161 yards (14.6), both career highs, including two touchdown passes covering 25 and 31 yards. In addition to Pac-10 player of the week honors, he was named national Offensive Player of the Week by the Walter Camp Foundation. It marked the second Pac-10 player of the week honors for Jackson this year, having previously been named for special teams work in California’s win against Tennessee.

LB Anthony Felder and P Andrew Larson were also nominated for the award.

EDIT 10/2: Jackson has also received the USA TODAY Player of the Week honor:

California wide receiver DeSean Jackson had 11 catches for 161 yards in a defeat of No. 12 Oregon to earn this week’s USA TODAY’s Player of the Week honor. Jackson scored twice on receptions of 25 and 31 yards as the No. 6 Bears stayed unbeaten with a 31-24 victory. Jackson won the award with the support of college football editor Erick Smith and Gannett News Service columnist Mike Lopresti. Fan voting sided with Illinois wide receiver Arrelious Benn.

DeCoud Pac-10 PotW

Posted by Eric | September 25, 2007 at 10:56 am | In Awards, Defense | No Comments

Free safety Thomas DeCoud has been named the Pac-10 Player of the Week (defensive) for his massive effort in Saturday’s victory over Arizona. He was a key player in stifling the Wildcats’ spread offense, and this award is well-deserved.

DeCoud, a senior from Pinole, Calif., made the big plays on defense in California’s 45-27 win against Arizona. DeCoud posted 10 tackles, including a quarterback sack for -12 yards. He also intercepted a pass, forced a fumble that a teammate returned for a touchdown and recovered a fumble that set up another California touchdown. The Golden Bear defense forced four Arizona turnovers.

RB Justin Forsett was also nominated for the award (offense).

DeSean Pac-10 PotW

Posted by Eric | September 5, 2007 at 2:27 am | In Awards, DeSean | 6 Comments

Despite touching the ball only once on special teams Saturday, DeSean Jackson has received the Pac-10 Player of the Week honor for his special teams play.

Jackson was a key player in Cal’s victory over Tennessee, tallying 143 all-purpose yards on just six touches. His most spectacular play came on his first punt return of the season as he fielded the ball on the near sideline. After dodging a Volunteer gunner, he maneuvered to his right, picked up a pair of crunching blocks and then accelerated. However, as the next Tennessee would-be tackler approached, Jackson stopped on a dime and back-stepped two steps to avoid any contact at all. From there, he had an open line to the end zone for a 77-yard score - his sixth career punt return touchdown (on just 27 returns).

That play was selected as ESPN’s No. 2 play of an exciting opening weekend of college football.

Tennessee’s remaining punts were directed well-away from Jackson.

RB Justin Forsett and LB Zack Follett were also nominated for the award on offense and defense, respectively.

Herbie Awards, Jackson

Posted by Steve | August 27, 2007 at 4:30 pm | In Awards | 1 Comment

Several Cal players have garnered spots on Kirk Herbstreit’s Seventh Annual Herbie Awards (ESPN), which he gives to “the best college football players, coaches, teams and fans from across the nation.” It’s good to see Cal players getting some well-deserved national respect. Here is a summary of the awards:

  • Best Wide Receivers - Speed To Burn: #1 DeSean Jackson
  • Dream Offensive Line - The Hogmollies: #1 Alex Mack, Center
  • Best Tight Ends - Block And Catch: #5 Craig Stevens
  • Best Quarterbacks - Old School: Classic Dropback Style: #6 Nate Longshore
  • Top True Freshmen: Jahvid Best, RB
  • What’s My Name - Players who will be household names by Oct. 1: Justin Forsett, RB
  • Favorite Playcallers - Keeping defenses off-balance: Jeff Tedford

EDIT by ERIC: There was also a nice mention of Jackson on today’s College Football Live by Todd McShay (Scouts Inc.) regarding the best pass catchers:

“Two of college football’s best pass catchers could be tight ends… now for the rest of the Wide Receivers there is no Calvin Johnson in college football this year but there are a lot of very good receivers. At the top of the list I have DeSean Jackson who beats out other guys like Mario Manningham, Limas Sweed, Earl Bennett and Adarius Bowman simply because of his versatility. I love the fact that he’s one of the premiere open field runners in the nation, catches the ball well, and while he’s small he’s tough and not afraid to go over the middle. That’s why I have Jackson ahead of this list. Throw in his kick return ability and punt return ability and to me he’s a special playmaker right up there with the best of them in college football.” [/JY]

DeSean for Heisman: www.the1towatch.com

Posted by Eric | July 9, 2007 at 4:06 pm | In Awards, DeSean | 6 Comments

the1towatch.com

Cal has put up an official site promoting DeSean Jackson for the Heisman, similar to the site for Marshawn Lynch last year. It sports some fancy Flash production and is filled with videos, photos, and other information. Take a look: the1towatch.com

I’m glad to see Cal putting together this promotional material for Jackson early on in anticipation of another amazing season from our very own WR/PR highlight reel.

EDIT 11:20 PM: According to Scout.com, Jackson has stated that this is his last year at the collegiate level. However, other sources say that this is completely untrue. I’ll make an update when the facts are known.

Honors for Jahvid Best

Posted by Eric | June 27, 2007 at 9:29 am | In Awards, Recruiting | 1 Comment

Jahvid Best, one of the headliners for the Bears’ 2007 recruiting class, is getting some big recognition as he graduates from high school.

He’s been honored with NorCal Athlete of the Year from CalHiSports:

Best’s numbers and awards could take up an entire book, and when the new Cal-Hi Sports Record Book was updated recently for this web site, Best’s name was there in more than a few places, both in the football and track and field categories. …

However, when we talked with [Coach Chad] Nightingale, all he could do was rave about Jahvid as an athlete, and a person. What he is most specially proud of is Best’s top times in the 100 and 200 which at 10.36 and 20.65 are fourth and second fastest in the nation this year respectively, and qualify Jahvid for status as a 2007 Track and Field All-American. “You know,” said Nightingale. “Those 100 and 200 marks are a few ticks better than Reggie Bush,” he gushed. In fact, they are. Bush’s best marks were 10.42 and 21.06. “Plus, he’s a little bigger than Reggie.” Nightingale said grinning. And that is also true.

He also received the Boys Track Athlete of the Year honor from the Contra Costa Times:

His time of 20.65 seconds would have won every California state meet in history prior to this year. But he faced Long Beach Poly’s Bryshon Nellum, who set a state meet record (20.43). Best’s time was also under the previous state meet record.

To give you an idea about the quality of those times, they would have placed Nellum and Best second and third, respectively, in this year’s NCAA 200 final.

Congratulations to Jahvid. Needless to say, we’re excited about what he will do in his next few years at Cal.

8 players are candidates for 2007 awards

Posted by Eric | April 27, 2007 at 11:31 pm | In Awards, Players/Alumni | No Comments

Eight Cal players are listed as candidates for honors in 2007:

  • LB Zack Follett (Butkus Award)
  • RB Justin Forsett (Doak Walker Award)
  • WR/PR DeSean Jackson (Biletnikoff Award, Randy Moss Award)
  • P Andrew Larson (Ray Guy Award)
  • QB Nate Longshore (Davey O’Brien Award, Manning Award)
  • C Alex Mack (Rimington Award)
  • PK Tom Schneider (Lou Groza Award)
  • TE Craig Stevens (Mackey Award)

Jackson wins Return Man award

Posted by Eric | December 17, 2006 at 7:58 am | In Awards, DeSean | 2 Comments

WR/PR DeSean Jackson won the 2006 Randy Moss Return Man award for nation’s top returner, the first of its kind. His 18.2 average yards per punt return and 4 returns for touchdowns this season are among the best in the nation.

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