Aug. 16, 2007
BERKELEY - The California football team held its first scrimmage of fall camp on Thursday afternoon at Memorial Stadium and the Golden Bear offense showed excellent skill and depth in the outing.
The first-string offense saw limited action after junior quarterback Nate Longshore directed the squad on an opening scoring drive. Longshore completed four-of-four passes for 46 yards, including a pair of deliveries to junior DeSean Jackson for 32 yards, while senior running back Justin Forsett had four carries for 24 yards, including a 13-yard touchdown run.
"We had the starters in (that first series) and they put together a real nice drive," Cal head coach Jeff Tedford said. "We substituted and put a lot of people in. It was a good learning day for us and some of the younger guys to gain tempo. It was a good day for our backup quarterbacks to get some experience in the huddle. They made some mistakes, but it was good (because) that is what practice is for. Overall I was really pleased with the effort. The guys were making plays."
The five-headed running back combo of Forsett, redshirt freshmen James Montgomery and Tracy Slocum and true freshmen Jahvid Best and Shane Vereen combined for 32 carries and 174 yards. In addition to Forsett's scoring rush, Slocum scored on a seven-yard run and Vereen hit the end zone on a one-yard plunge.
"We're real fortunate (to have five running backs)," Tedford said. "The young kids are everything as advertised. Shane (Vereen) and Jahvid (Best) are not only great talents, but great kids. They are very hard workers and we'll need to utilize those guys this year."
In addition to Longshore, sophomore Kyle Reed connected on seven-of-12 passes for 55 yards and redshirt freshman Kevin Riley was four-of-13 for 47 yards and a 23-yard touchdown connection with senior Sean Young.
Young was the top receiver on the day, snagging four passes for 51 yards, including the touchdown. Vereen and Best each added a pair of receptions, while redshirt freshman tight end Garry Graffort and true freshman receiver Michael Calvin had two catches each.
Defensively, sophomore lineman Jonanthan Karacozoff had six tackles and sophomore linebacker had five takedowns. Junior linebacker Anthony Felder and true freshman cornerback Chris Conte each added four tackles while senior linebacker Greg Van Hoesen, junior tackle Mika Kane, sophomore linebacker Shea McIntyre, sophomore defensive back Brett Johnson and sophomore safety Marcus Ezeff each had three stops. Redshirt freshmen Michael Mohamed (linebacker) and Charles Amadi (cornerback) as well as true freshman Scott Smith also had three tackles.
In special teams action, Best and senior Brandon Hampton both had kickoff return touchdowns. Best, the California 100-meter state high school champion this spring, took his back 85 yards, followed by Hampton breaking free for a 94-yard return.
Senior placekicker Tom Schneider connected on field goals of 48 yards, 43 yards and 39 yards, while being off the mark with a 51-yarder. He also knocked home both of his extra-point attempts.
California opens the 2007 season on Saturday, Sept. 1, hosting Tennessee at Memorial Stadium in a 5 p.m. contest. The only way to purchase tickets to the Tennessee (Sept. 1) and USC (Nov. 10) games currently is through a season ticket purchase. Single-game tickets are available for all games except Tennessee, USC and Stanford. Ticket information is available by visiting www.CalBears.com or by calling 1-800-GO-BEARS.