Following the departure of Cal frosh linebacker Cecil Whiteside, who was removed for violating team rules, adding some depth to the outside backer position became a priority for the Bears in 2012.
Former Pinole Valley and current Contra Costa College outside linebacker Antoine Davis was offered earlier as an early entrant to the 2013 class, but with the departure of Whiteside, the local product was offered the opportunity to come in right away and start summer school next week for the Bears and the Comet jumped on the opportunity.
"Coach Thompson saw me in practice during our spring ball," said Davis. "He liked me and offered for January but I got a phone call this morning and they want me right away, so that's what I'm going to do."
Davis is an excellent student, with a 3.7 GPA at CCC. He is only two classes short of finishing all his prerequisite classes for his AA and will come in to Cal with four years to play three since he was a full qualifier out of high school.
The 6-4 Comets have been on the rise under former McClymonds and Berkeley High School head coach Alonzo Carter. CCC's defense was spurred by Davis with seven sacks, two forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and 45 tackles on the season.
"Coach Carter was the big reason I went to Contra Costa," said Davis. "His work ethic and high standards he sets for the team and for everyone individually help make us better. He treats everyone the same, no matter how big a role we play on the team, like we're his kids. It's like he gets thirty new kids a season.
"He expects the best from everyone and if you give him anything less than that, he's going to get on you. That goes for academics, too.
"Over the last two years, there's been over 50 players on the dean's list, with gpa's over 3.0. That's most of the team so that says a lot.
"He always tells us that even if we don't play football anymore, he wants us to get that degree. He wants us to finish.
"It's a great environment to be in. He backs us off the field as much as he backs us on it. He's done an amazing job."
Davis hails from the same local high school as former Bear and current Atlanta Falcon safety Thomas DeCoud, another factor that made the Bears stand out in Davis' mind as he was growing up.
"Thomas came by the school to talk to us," said Davis. "It was nice to see someone from our school that played under our coach that was able to get out there and be successful in football.
"I watch him on TV and it's like, 'Come on, Thomas!"
Cal linebacker coach Kenwick Thompson has been Davis' main recruiter at Cal and they've begun to develop a solid relationship.
"I really like the way Coach Thompson uses his linebackers," said Davis. "He prepares them well year after year."
Davis hasn't had a chance to meet many of his future teammates but he has had a chance to connect with fellow outside linebacker Chris McCain.
"I've had a chance to hang out some with Chris, He's my boy," said Davis, with a laugh. "I've checked him out on youtube, too."
The 6-5/230 Davis cited his football IQ and speed off the edge as his primary assets.
"I'd like to gain a little more weight," said Davis. "I"ve been up to Cal's new facilities and I think that's the perfect place to get me in even better shape."
Besides Cal, Davis has an offer from North Carolina State and has recently begun receiving a lot of attention from Oregon and Washington before committing to Cal.