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Cal Football

Dancy Making the Most of His Opportunity

August 26, 2018
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After splitting time as primary tailback for Oakland's Laney City College last season, where he earned All-Conference and All-Region honors, junior running back Marcel Dancy is making a big impression in fall camp and season opening game prep at Cal. Dancy's worked his way up the depth chart, taking reps of late with the 2's and occasionally even with the 1's when starter Patrick Laird gets a break.

"With every opportunity, I'm going to take full advantage," said Dancy. "So every carry they give me, I'm going to make it count."

Before Laney, Dancy played for Tracy's Merrill F. West in high school, amassing 3.066 all purpose yards as a senior, with 30 touchdowns on offense and 90 tackles and five interceptions at free safety on D.

Last season at Laney, Dancy had 1.033 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns with a 6.8 yards per carry average along with 22 catches for 241 yards and three more td's through the air.

The last Cal running back to hail from Laney was NFL running back CJ Anderson, who parlayed his successful stint at Cal to one of the most productive running backs in the NFL.

Dancy describes himself as an all-around back.

"Yeah, I definitely pride myself on that, just being an all-around football player," said Dancy. "Growing, up, I played every position so it all kind of comes together, especially playing running back."

Even though Dancy played high school ball in Tracy, his roots are in Oakland, so playing for the hometown Bears is a special opportunity for the talented running back.

"I actually grew up in Oakland, so coming back to Laney, it means a lot to my family and especially a lot to that school. A lot of my family have went through that program, so it means a lot and I just wanted to make enough noise for Cal to hear me."

When he committed to play for Cal as a preferred walk-on in February, Dancy reflected on how meaningful it was to play for the program in his backyard.

"I've been watching Cal all season," said Dancy at the time. "I've just watched how Coach Wilcox has come in and turned the program around in a positive way.

"As a kid, I always watched Cal. Growing up, everyone wanted to be at Cal. Just like for me, it was a dream to play for Cal and the Raiders.

"I remember watching Marshawn playing for Cal growing up, too. He's had an impact on me as a role model, showing that I could follow in his footsteps as far as football and further my career to also help my community and everyone along that journey.

"When I got that call from Cal, it was just a surreal moment for me. I know it's just the beginning of a lot of hard work and a lot of focus."

The Bears' running back corps was extremely thin during spring practice with starting running back Patrick Laird out and the grad transfer of prior starter Tre Watson and three new running backs yet to have arrived.

Now the running back room is full of talented and hungry players, ready to turn a thin position group into of the deepest and most talented position groups on the roster. They bring a confidence onto the field, knowing that they have the opportunity to play a big role in a strong season.

"Definitely, that's the only thing we're expecting," said Dancy. "We're not expecting anything less. We expect to come together as one, which we already have and just build off that and build off each other. We push each other every practice, right up to the game.

"Everybody's hungry. It's a very competitive room. Everybody feeds off each other and makes each other better. Iron sharpens iron."

Senior running back Patrick Laird has been a leader all camp and sets the tone for the running back corps by his consistent effort and his mentoring of the rest of the backs.

"He's definitely a great teammate," said Dancy. "Him, along with our quarterbacks, our coaches and o-line came together, helping me learn the system."

Dancy is joined by incoming freshman running backs Chris Brown and Johnny Adams, who have both made good first impressions along with Dancy. Brown is a power back with good burst and Adams is more in line with Dancy with quick feet and good speed.

"They're both hungry, just like me," said Dancy. "Everybody's hungry in that room and we make each rep count."

Quarterback Ross Bowers has played a key role in getting the team prepared and fired up for the 2018 season, constantly organizing extra sessions with his teammates in the offseason.

"He's definitely taken control in a positive way," said Dancy. "He took on that leadership role. Nobody asked him but everyone kind of followed suit.

"He's not the only leader but he's definitely one that everybody hears. That's definitely my quarterback that I'm down to protect along with all the rest of our quarterbacks. They're all leaders."

Are there any others on the team that are standing out as natural leaders?

"Everybody's kind of been a leader," noted Dancy. "We don't have a lot of followers because we're all one. We know what goal we have set and we've been working towards that as a team and as a family. I think we all kind of show that leadership trait and will continue to do so."

Discussion from...

Dancy Making the Most of His Opportunity

socaliganbear
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So he's transferring eh? Damn.
Yogi Bear
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Bowers is not a senior
MoragaBear
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Staff
For those that haven't been at practice, you might be shocked at exactly how good this walk-on jc transfer is.

He's not a big guy but he hits like a 210 lb back and he's quick, shifty and super versatile, with really nice hands out of the backfield or in the slot when they play empty backfield.

Clark, Brown and Adams have all had really nice camps, too, but Dancy seems to have jumped them all for pt, though Clark and probably one of the freshmen will play, too.
ducky23
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How many school's top two rbs are both walk-ons? Pretty cool
calumnus
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MoragaBear said:

For those that haven't been at practice, you might be shocked at exactly how good this walk-on jc transfer is.

He's not a big guy but he hits like a 210 lb back and he's quick, shifty and super versatile, with really nice hands out of the backfield or in the slot when they play empty backfield.

Clark, Brown and Adams have all had really nice camps, too, but Dancy seems to have jumped them all for pt, though Clark and probably one of the freshmen will play, too.


Hope they find a scholarship for him.
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