The 2012 recruiting cycle is the story of what could have been for Cal. Visit Cal blog California Golden Blogs.
The information for this Cal football recruiting National Signing Day preview is courtesy of Marc Tausend, of SB Nation's tremendous Cal Bears site, California Golden Blogs. Be sure to visit CGB for all your Cal signing day information. Looking for National Signing Day coverage of other teams or recruits? Head to SB Nation College Football Recruiting.
In the last month, Cal has lost commitments from five-stars Ellis McCarthy (to UCLA) and Shaq Thompson (to Washington). The Bears also saw Arik Armstead, an elite lineman, go to Oregon. That was especially painful because he was considered a lock to play for Cal until defensive line coach and ace recruiter Tosh Lupoi bolted for the same position at Washington. Cal also lost a commitment from safety Zach Hoffpauir, who seems likely to choose Stanford on National Signing Day.
Additionally, receiver Kenny Walker is likely to switch his commitment to Washington. "Too bad. Walker is a local kid (from Richmond), and has been in the fold since August. He's also our fastest WR commit and a versatile, talented guy," said Tausend.
And that's not all. Cal could also lose receiver Cedric Dozier to Mike Leach and Washington State. "Dozier is a real weapon and would certainly have a shot at early PT for us next season. Damn that Mike Leach offense!," said Tausend.
If you thought Cal was done with potentially losing receiver commitments, you'd be wrong, as Jordan Payton is set to announce on Tuesday. "Funny, I thought he already made his decision three weeks ago. What ever happened to good old fashioned decommitments!? Give Hoff credit for that at least. Payton is probably going to Washington," said Tausend.
And yet one more stud Cal receiver commitment is wavering, as Bryce Treggs of Bellflower, Calif., has decided to have an announcement despite being committed to Cal for some time. Said Tausend:
"He's (allegedly) spent enough time at UCLA in the last two weeks that this could get interesting. Obviously the official visit he had to Cal was good, but he's made a few too many trips to Westwood for me to be too comfortable. Plus, he's going to be doing an announcement on the same televised show as Lawler and Beaver. Why announce? Good pub for Cal? Or is something wicked awaiting? I don't know."
There is some positive news for Cal, however. Running back Jeffrey Coprich is still in the fold. "This guy is a great athlete. Strong, versatile, and fast. He could be a special player at a few different spots. Under the radar for sure, but a very nice new toy nonetheless," said Tausend.
Cal is also still competing for Justin Davidson, a tight end out of Kentucky. He specializes in blocking. The Bears are also in the mix for cornerback Brandon Beaver of Compton, Calif., cornerback Raymond Ford of Gardena, Calif., receiver Kenny Lawler of Upland, Calif., linebacker Ukeme Eligwe (a Florida State commitment) of Stone Mountain, Ga., and tight end Christo Kourtzidis (a Florida State commitment) of Orange, Calif.
Of those, Tausend thinks the Bears have a very good shot at landing the four-star Lawler.
If Cal can pull some surprises on Wednesday, this could still be a solid class. But if not, this will go down as the biggest disappointment of the 2012 recruiting cycle. It's hard to state just how wide the gap is between what Cal might have had, and what it has now. All thanks to a coaching move.