Aug. 10, 2008
BERKELEY - The University of California football team conducted its eighth practice of preseason camp on a sunny Sunday afternoon at Memorial Stadium. The Golden Bears worked out in full pads for the third time as they prepare for the second week of camp.
"[Over this first week of camp], we've learned that we have a great group of guys," Cal head coach Jeff Tedford said. "Guys are working hard and taking pride in doing things right. They have come together and build great chemistry.
"It's been nice to see some of the young guys playing well. The two new tight ends, Spencer [Ladner] and Anthony [Miller], have really impressed us. The young receivers have done a nice job; and [Bryant] Nnabuife and the young defensive linemen have really done well also. Mychal Kendricks has really stood out. It's a great group of young guys. Those guys are really doing a good job. Not only are they good athlete and hard workers, but they're great kids as well."
Once again, the defense looked impressive, providing the majority of the big plays. Nnabuife tallied an interception and a pass break-up, as well as a sack on a blitz; freshman Trevor Guyton forced a fumble; and junior Tyson Alualu and sophomore Michael Mohamed both caused trouble in the backfield. However, Tedford was quick to point out that the defense being ahead at this point of camp is to be expected.
"[The offense usually catches up to the defense] when you stop all of the installation," Tedford said. "When you put new plays in every practice, everything is learning. Then when you start being able to get repetitions with them, we get more efficient."
Sophomore Jahvid Best provided multiple highlights once again out of the backfield, including gaining extra yardage via the stiff arm on one play. Redshirt freshman Brock Mansion connected with Marvin Jones on a crossing pattern and true freshmen Beau Sweeney and Jarrett Sparks hooked up for a touchdown in a goal-line situation.
With the defense performing well and Tedford complimenting the play of the young defensive linemen, first-year defensive line coach Tosh Lupoi has been excited to be working with the talented young group.
"It feels great," said Lupoi. "I feel there is a definite hunger here on the defensive line. The guys are really inspired to get better. They are all feeding off each other and it's been real special to be a part of this group.
"We put a major focus on lowering our pad level and striking for pad control while at the same time, striving to be a very balanced defensive line. We want to stop the run and generate some pass rushes."
Cal has another double-session on Monday, working out in shells in the morning and returning to full pads again in the afternoon.