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Fall Camp Day 2: Quarterbacks Provide Some Highlights

August 7, 2021
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The Cal football team hit the field for Day 2 of fall camp on Saturday and worked briskly for about two hours in Memorial Stadium.

Most of the day was devoted to individual drills as the players broke down into position groups and worked on various skills and techniques specific to their respective assignments.

They did have some team drills where they actually almost played football, both 7-on-7 and full team. There was no tackling, of course, and because the attire was shorts and shells the hitting was limited. 

The highlight, at least for the offense, was a long pass from Chase Garbers to Kekoa Crawford that went for a 55-yard TD.  On the play, Garbers, who was under center, took the snap and did some shenanigans with the ball that briefly confused the defense. Then he stood up and saw Crawford running by his lonesome down the right sideline. His throw found its target.

“He made a great play to Kekoa Crawford today, great decision, really pretty pass,” offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave said afterward. He said that in order to see that backups get plenty of work, Garbers, “isn’t getting the lion’s share of the reps, we are kind of splitting them evenly. But when Chase is in there he is doing a nice job,”

With Penn transfer, Ryan Glover still not in camp, freshman Kai Millner and sophomore Zach Johnson got a lot of work at QB. “Everyone else who is in the mix to be the backup had their moments,” Musgrave said. 

Johnson made some nice throws but also was intercepted a couple of times by Tyson McWilliams and Raymond Woodie.

Brian Driscoll, who was Michael Saffell’s primary backup at center last year, is running with the first unit now that Saffell had to give up the sport. 

“Brian is awesome, doing a great job,” said starting right guard Matthew Cindric. “Mike coached him up last year getting him ready. He is really taking it, doing a great job with it. He improves every day.”

The biggest difference between Driscoll and Saffell is that there is simply more of Driscoll. He is 6-4, 320 as opposed to Safell’s 6-2, 290. 

Robert Edwards/KLC fotos
Cindric (73) and Driscoll (60)

“He is a bigger guy with more mass on him,” Cindric said. “He can move guys off the line and stand guys up, keep the pocket good for Chase.”

Driscoll, who converted to center from tackle, says he is adjusting to being in the middle of things.

“Going into my third year I am loving it,” he said. “I am getting comfortable with it.”

Christopher Brooks (formerly Christopher Brown) leads a deep group of running backs, and he looked good on a few plays Saturday. “He is working hard, but he’s always worked hard since I’ve been here the last 18 months,” Musgrave said. “A terrific worker and leader. Had some soft tissue, nagging, chronic Injury in 2020. But he worked hard to get back to being himself and he has looked really outstanding the first two days.”

Is he faster than a year ago? “He could be. I know he looks more dynamic. He is someone we are really glad to have on our team.”

The same could be said of what is now a second Brooks on the squad, DeCarlos Brooks the redshirt sophomore from Arizona.

“He made some nice moves and was working a lot between periods, working on his hands,” Musgrave said. “I think we are feeling good about that stable of backs.”

Some other observations from Day 2.

  • Freshman tight end Keleki Latu held onto a catch as he was hit by a DB on the sideline.
  • Nikko Remigio, who had lined up in the backfield, chipped a blitzing linebacker, then slipped away and caught a pass from Garbers for a nice gain,
  • Young defensive linemen Gunnar Rask and Derek Wilkins showed some run-stuffing abilities.
  • Linebacker Orin Patu got into the backfield on several occasions during full-team drills.
  • Among those presumably injured and doing only cardio work on the sidelines were linebacker Patrick Hisatake, tight end Jake Muller, linebacker Mo Iosefa and wide receiver Jared Staub.
  • Safety Daniel Scott did some work in individual drills but did not participate in team work. 

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Fall Camp Day 2: Quarterbacks Provide Some Highlights

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