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Cal Football

Bear Insider Video: Biaggio Ali-Walsh

April 27, 2018

With the upcoming season at hand, freshman Biaggio Ali-Walsh is prepared to bounce back. Last year, due to an ankle injury that occured during fall camp, Ali-Walsh was forced redshirt in order to recover. He claims he is completely healthy at this point and is excited to get back on the field.

“I re-injured my ankle from a previous injury in high school. It was really tough because I wanted to play last year. When I felt like I was 100%, I came back and I just worked on what I could and I tried my best to hopefully get out of redshirting. I got the experience from redshirting so I’m thankful for that,” said Ali-Walsh.

The redshirt frosh tried to look at being redshirted in a positive light. He took the chance of having to sit out to observe and reflect on his environment.

“I feel like if I didn’t redshirt, I would be a little bit overwhelmed with everything. I think I could handle it, but I feel like I would still be overwhelmed. Being able to redshirt, I got the experience. I was able to sit back, look around and see what was going on and I got a lot out of that,” said Ali-Walsh.

During the scrimmage on April 14th, Ali-Walsh had a nice catch in the endzone. He explains that the coaches are definitely talking about utilizing the running backs in the passing game this season.

“When we first met with coach Toler, he was telling us that the running backs are going to be definitely catching a lot this season so I’ve done nothing but catch after practice and before practice. I am working on getting my hands better because I haven’t been a receiver since flag football,” said Ali-Walsh.

Ali-Walsh attended high school at Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas, a powerhouse football program. He was surrounded by tons of D1 talent, which he claims has helped him get to where he is today.

“Going against people like Haskell Garrett, who is now at Ohio State, Bubba Bolden, and Alex Perry, definitely get you better. I think it definitely helped me get here because they could play in this program too,” said Ali-Walsh.

Cal has made a step up in defense this year from what has been seen at the spring practices. The offense is not far behind and Ali-Walsh has been contributing greatly to the team’s skill set.

“I think I definitely am a man of speed. We are a Pac 12 football program so I think speed definitely comes in handy at this point. I love Beau Baldwin's offense and I think that speed and good vision would go great with that,” said Ali-Walsh.

The Bears currently have several running back injuries, which has allowed for Ali-Walsh to have more reps during practice. He doesn’t consider this a positive or a negative thing, though.

“It is positive, as in I can get in a couple more reps in, but negative because my teammates are injured and we need them back on the field. So it’s a necessary evil,” said Ali-Walsh.

In early January, Burl Toler agreed to become the Bear’s new running backs coach. Toler was a four-year letterwinner who played at Cal and coached on staff previously. Though he is new, it seems he has formed great bonds with the players. Ali-Walsh considers him one of his favorites on staff.

“I think coach Toler is a great guy. I haven’t even known him for that long but he is already one of my favorites. I like the way he coaches. He critiques me. When I mess up, I get really mad and he calms me down and it makes me want to do better. I really like him,” said Ali-Walsh.

As many know, Ali-Walsh is the grandson of one of the most legendary athletes in history, Muhammad Ali. The two had a very close relationship with each other and Ali-Walsh still shares memorable photos of them together on social media. He claims he learned many things from his grandfather that have helped him throughout his career.

“The biggest thing I learned from him was to always be humble. He had, at one point, the world at his feet. Of course, through the media, it came off that he was cocky, but that’s boxing. That is what you are supposed to do. You are supposed to market yourself like that, it’s an individual sport.

"When the cameras were off, he was the nicest guy. He was very humble and very sweet so I want take that with me whenever I get to in my life,” said Ali-Walsh.

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