Aug. 21, 2006
BERKELEY - The University of California football team continued its final week of preseason camp with a pair of practices on Monday at Memorial Stadium. Neither session featured full pads as the longer morning workout was conducted in helmets and shoulder pads and the light afternoon practice was a helmets-only affair.
The morning session featured a pair of offensive highlights as quarterbacks Nate Longshore and Joe Ayoob each threw touchdowns. Longshore connected with junior tight end Craig Stevens for a 60-plus-yard touchdown across the middle. Ayoob followed that by hitting junior running back Justin Forsett on a screen pass, and Forsett ducked through the defense and to the end zone for a long score.
However, the Cal defense was not quiet all session as redshirt freshman defensive back Marcus Ezeff picked off a pass just outside the end zone and true freshman defensive back Charles Amadi snared an interception on a tipped ball.
Monday's practices were warm-ups for Cal's second and final preseason scrimmage to be held on Tuesday. The scrimmage is closed to the public and all media.
"We just want to polish it up a little bit, get some game-type situations done," head coach Jeff Tedford said of the plan for Tuesday's scrimmage. "Offensively, defensively and special teams; utilize all clock situations; just kind of have a dress rehearsal for a game."
Despite Monday's highlights, following the afternoon session, Tedford was asked about junior punter Andrew Larson, a junior college transfer, who had wowed onlookers with several booming punts at Sunday's practice.
"He was pretty impressive," Tedford said. "He turned the ball over nicely; I don't know how far they were, but they were in the 70-yard range. I think as you make a transition, you start getting in your comfort zone; that's very important."
This Saturday will be Fan Appreciation Day at Memorial Stadium. The event runs from 10:30 to noon. Afterwards, the Bears head back to Memorial Stadium for their final practice of camp at 3:00. That practice will also be closed to the public.
The 2006 season starts on Sept. 2 in Knoxville against Tennessee at 2:30 p.m. (PST). The game will be televised live on ESPN. The following week is the home opener for the Bears, when they host Minnesota at 4 p.m. For ticket information, call 1-800-GO-BEARS.