California head coach Sonny Dykes is a busy man.
After hosting four official visitors over this past weekend in Jared Goff, Matt Anderson, Johnny Ragin III and Drake Whitehurst, Dykes and inside receivers coach Mark Tommerdahl paid an in-home visit to wide receiver commit Caleb Coleman out of Berkeley (Calif.) St. Mary's.
Coleman -- who committed back in November -- had spoken with the Bears coaching staff almost as soon as they came to town, but this was the first time he got to meet them face-to-face.
"I think the biggest part of the in-home was really for my parents to meet the coaches in person," Coleman said. "My parents asked a lot of questions, and they answered them. They showed that they're really excited about me, and we also nailed down an official visit date."
That official visit will come on Jan. 25, when Coleman will drive the one mile up the hill to the Cal campus.
The Bears have been interested in Coleman ever since the last regime offered him in June, before he broke his arm at a Nevada team camp, an injury that required two months of recuperation, as well as extended physical therapy.
"I was about to hit the whole camp circuit, but I broke my arm at the Nevada team camp," Coleman said. "That kind of put me behind the eight-ball as far as camps, because, coming from a smaller school, I didn't really get a lot of exposure that some of the bigger recruits had. Once I broke my arm, I guess that's what led to me being under-recruited."
Coleman still came back to record 53 catches for 900 yards as a senior, with 13 touchdowns -- 11 catches and two kickoff returns.
That led to offers from Air Force, Army, Fresno State, Harvard, Navy, Wyoming and Yale. But, still, Cal always held a special place in Coleman's heart.
"I was born and raised in Berkeley, and I've been a Cal fan my whole life. I don't think I'd be able to say no to going into Berkeley and competing and producing for a team that I've enjoyed watching," Coleman said.
Now that the season is over, Coleman is concentrating on his speed. As a sophomore, Coleman posted a personal best of 10.8 seconds in the 100-meter dash, and a year ago recorded a 4.47-second 40 time. After taking a year off of track to focus on football, Coleman is back in his running spikes, preparing to run the 100 and the 200 this spring.
"I think they like me just being a natural receiver, being able to catch the ball naturally, and the speed I can bring to the game," Coleman said of the Bears. "I think they said I'd be a perfect fit for the offense, and I'm just really excited about it."
At 6-foot, 178 pounds, Coleman is not the biggest receiver on the field, but he knows how to make things happen, as evidenced by his 17 yards per catch as a senior. Since the new staff came on, Coleman has been intently scouting the offenses at Louisiana Tech and Texas Tech, to see what kind of attack he'll be a part of, focusing primarily on one receiver in particular.
"I've watched a couple things from Louisiana Tech and Texas Tech, kind of looking at this style of offense, and a lot of the receivers that I've seen in it, I can see being similar to my game," Coleman said. "A lot of what we talked about was Quinton Patton, from Louisiana Tech, who's entering the draft this year. I'm going to start watching a lot more tape on him, because we're about the same frame. Obviously, he's bigger, being older, but I think that's really going to be the type of player I'm going to strive to be, once I sit down and put my work in. He definitely seems like a player that I can model my game around."
Patton – who's listed at 6-foot-2, 195 pounds – caught 104 passes for 1,392 yards last season for the Bulldogs, and as Coleman said, is entered into this year's NFL Draft. Another smallish receiver Coleman's been paying attention to is Wes Welker, who thrived under Dykes in Lubbock, posting 259 catches for 3,019 yards and 21 touchdowns.
"Just the fact that the offense is built around the passing game, a lot of offenses, the more traditional pro-styles -- the Stanfords, the Alabamas -- they run to set up the pass, and the fact that this offense is based around the passing game and based around receivers making plays, that's right up my alley," Coleman said. "Being a receiver, being a guy who can make plays, who can catch the ball, I think that's just perfect for me."
Coleman has a 3.83 unweighted GPA, and a 3.9 weighted mark. He said that one of Cal's biggest draws has always been the academics.
"I think even if some of the other schools would have come in, at the end of the day, it would have been Cal, just because of the academics that it brings to the table and also proximity to home," he said.
Ryan Gorcey publishes Cal Sports Digest and writes about Major League Baseball for FOXSportsNEXT. Follow him on Twitter @RGBearTerritory.
Coleman Talks In-Home
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