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DeSean Jackson drafted by the Eagles at #49

Posted by Steve | April 26, 2008 at 5:19 pm | In DeSean | 3 Comments

DeSean Jackson in Philadelphia

DeSean Jackson has been drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles as the 18th pick of the second round, pick number 49 overall and the 7th wide receiver to be drafted. In a rather strange draft, no wide receivers were selected in the first round, which seemed to be dominated by defensive players and linemen.

EDIT: The Eagles have also selected OT Mike Gibson in the 6th round (184th overall).

In Alumni news, the Green Bay Packers selected with the 56th pick of the draft QB Brian Brohm from Louisville, so Aaron Rodgers will have some competition for the starting QB job.

EDIT: The Packers also selected QB Matt Flynn (LSU) in the 7th round, so Rodgers will certainly be pushed to succeed with the addition of these rookies.

DeSean Jackson article

Posted by Alex | April 16, 2008 at 6:26 pm | In DeSean, Players/Alumni | 4 Comments

NFL.com recently published this article by Thomas George about DeSean Jackson. It brought up some interesting points about Jackson’s draft stock. Seemingly, concerns with Jackson’s character are dropping his stock a bit into the late first round. George says this about Jackson:

The good:

Explosive. Electrifying. Dual threat as a receiver and kick returner. Excellent hands. Projected that he could reach Carolina receiver Steve Smith-type output in style and production. A junior entry into the draft with compelling upside.

The bad:

A me-guy. Selfish. Not a good teammate. Not a coachable player. Too many questionable influences hanging around him and a hard time letting them go.

Also, he quotes a 25-year scout who gives an incredible compliment to Jackson, along with a bit of a caveat:

“This young man has all of the ability in the world. He can be as good as he wants to be. But is he going to do the things necessary to get there? I had a scout tell me to watch him in workouts with the receivers and see if he is not the last one in the line for drills. So, I looked. He was the last one in line for drills. But there are issues and there are issues. He’s not evil. He’s not robbing banks. If you draft this guy, you’d better have him on a short leash from the get-go. He seems to have always done just enough to beat those around him relying on the fact he was better than them. Well, at the next level, they are as good and better than him. His size is a concern. He goes no later than the second round. He could get in the bottom of the first round.”

There have constantly been reports of Jackson being a “me-first” guy, but it is difficult to tell if these are true. Jackson’s teammates have always been complimentary of him. Hopefully, Jackson himself can be trusted, and he ends up being a superstar in the NFL.

DeSean: NFL decision today

Posted by Eric | January 15, 2008 at 8:43 am | In DeSean | 5 Comments

EDIT 1:40 PM: DeSean Jackson has declared for the NFL. Listen to an audio recording of his Q&A with the media here (from Scout.com). Read ESPN’s article about his decision here. Good luck in the league, DeSean.

EDIT 12:15 PM: 45 minutes until Jackson’s announcement. In the meantime, here is a clip from the Chronicle:

It’s widely suggested that a player being assured a first-round selection should not risk injury with a return to college. …

“I don’t even get with that,” Bill Jackson said. “He could be like Brady Quinn, sitting there all day. Education is the most important thing to our family.”

Bill Jackson said he was under the impression that his message had resonated with his son.

“I really think he was leaning toward coming back to school,” he said. “If he was going to go (to the) draft, he would have to be working out. He’s been relaxed and hanging out with his partners.

“Of course, he blew my mind with his last decision. I thought he was going to SC.”

DeSean Jackson ranks third all-time at Cal in receiving yards (2,423) and receiving touchdowns (22) and sixth in receptions (162). He has 28 touchdowns in 36 games, including a school- and conference-record six punt returns for scores.

He has 52 career plays of 20 yards or more - 23 percent of his 226 touches - including a 40-yard touchdown reception in the Armed Forces Bowl. DeSean Jackson came off the bench from an undisclosed rules violation to catch five passes for 81 yards from backup Kevin Riley in Cal’s 42-36 comeback win over Air Force.

“With Riley’s performance, it’s going to be a really hard decision,” Jackson said after the Dec. 31 game. “I could come back and get like 100 catches. The way he played gives me something to think about.

At 1pm today, WR/PR DeSean Jackson will announce whether he intends to stay his senior year at Cal or declare as a junior for the draft. Throughout this past season, Jackson has been pegged as a definite first-round pick.

Today is the deadline for underclassmen like Jackson to make their decision — he has waited to literally the last minute to make his decision. Given this drawn-out delay, there might be some slight hope that Jackson will return. We’ll see in a few hours.

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:

Players in the news

Posted by Steve | October 16, 2007 at 11:31 am | In DeSean, Players/Alumni | 9 Comments

DeSean Jackson dropped out of the Heisman Watch completely this week, after catching 4 passes for only 5 yards against Oregon State. Lavelle “The Hawk” Hawkins, after his outstanding performance Saturday and his consistency since the beginning of the season, is being highlighted on ESPN’s spotlight by Mel Kiper as a first day NFL pick. It’s good to see him get some more positive press, as he’s been our most reliable receiver, and he’s also been doing a good job of kick returns.

QB news, injury update, links

Posted by Eric | October 11, 2007 at 10:22 pm | In DeSean, Players/Alumni, Ranks/Predictions | 3 Comments

QB Nate Longshore’s availability (sprained left ankle) for the Oregon State match-up will be a gametime decision, according to Coach Jeff Tedford. Apparently, backup QB Kevin Riley has been taking about 75 percent of the first team snaps in practice and is looking pretty confident.

Regarding the other injuries: LB Zach Follett should be back in action on Saturday, FB Will Ta’ufo’ou (knee) is questionable, DB Marcus Ezeff (quad) who made the winning tackle of the Oregon game is a gametime decision, and DE Rulon Davis (foot) and PK Tom Schneider are still out.

Also, here are a few miscellaneous links of interest:

  • ESPN has a midseason review of the Pac-10, naming Cal the “biggest surprise” as a national title contender, RB Justin Forsett as the conference MVP, and Coach Tedford the conference’s coach of the year.
  • ESPN’s NFL draft guru Mel Kiper thinks Longshore is the #1 junior quarterback, WR/PR DeSean Jackson is an “obvious” first-round pick, and WR Lavelle Hawkins should be a third-rounder.
  • The Sacramento Bee has a feature on CB Syd’Quan Thompson and LB Worrell Williams — apparently, Marshawn isn’t the only mama’s boy.
  • The sports center lawsuit is finally wrapping up, and the lawyers made closing arguments earlier today.
  • DeSean was interviewed by KRON 4’s Gary Radnich yesterday — he is a confident, charismatic guy who seems to have really won Radnich over.

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.

Jackson to #3 in the Heisman Watch

Posted by Steve | October 2, 2007 at 10:03 am | In DeSean | 4 Comments

In this week’s Heisman Watch released this morning, WR DeSean Jackson moved up into third place behind Arkansas’ Darren McFadden and Kentucky’s Andre Woodson. Todd McShay writes:

DeSean Jackson, WR/RS, Cal
Cal’s thrilling victory at Oregon propels the team to a No. 3 ranking and Jackson right back in the Heisman mix. The junior receiver hauled in 11 passes for 161 yards and two touchdowns. Jackson was limited — partially due to a sprained thumb — to only 67 receiving yards in the previous two games (Louisiana Tech and Arizona) combined, making his performance Saturday that much more dramatic. Is there any doubt that Jackson is the nation’s most electrifying playmaker? Not from where I stand, at least.

While it is still early in the season and the door is still open for any and all candidates to make it to the final few, more publicity and airtime right now will only help his campaign.

EDIT by ERIC: Meanwhile, well-respected blogger Heisman Pundit just placed Jackson at #6 in his predictive Heisman rankings - I think Jackson will need more big games to become a real contender to win.

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.

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.

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