Last week, three-star defensive end C.J. Reese spoke twice with California special teams coordinator and long-time San Antonio, Tex.-area recruiter Mark Tommerdahl, who was out to evaluate the 6-foot-4, 260-pounder, and the Bears are now inching their way towards an offer.
"I talked with the coach [Wednesday], and he told me that, even though he knew I was a Kansas State commit, he wanted to know if they had any chance at me," Reese said. "I told him that I'm keeping my options open, and I'm a soft verbal right now to Kansas State, so if they gave me an offer, I'd think about it. He told me to call him back on Friday maybe with an early offer after he fits me on their recruiting board."
That Friday call-back resulted in Tommerdahl asking for Reese's transcripts, yet another step on the way to a scholarship.
"My grades are really good. I don't have to worry about taking my SAT again, because I'm already in, wherever I want to go," said Reese. "He said that I'd need a 1200 to get into Cal, but I said, ‘No problem; I've already got better than that.'"
Reese committed to the Wildcats on April 15, but is entertaining other options, particularly options as academically stout as Cal.
"I've always known that Cal's a pretty good school, and he was talking to me more about the education, and that's what really caught my attention," Reese said. "It wasn't just football. It was mostly about after I graduate, he talked about the percentage of people who graduate, and that's what really caught me – he didn't talk about football even that much. He was starting to try and build a relationship with me, and for right now, I like where he was coming from."
The Bears are set to send out a slew of offers on the defensive side of the ball this coming week, and Reese is hoping that he's one of the chosen few.
"He saw me scrimmaging, and he said that I caught his eye," said Reese, who was teammates with one-time Bears commit Dannon Cavil last season for the 10-3 Mavericks. "He said that he liked how fast I got off the ball, that I can really read on the field and get off the ball. He basically said that with eight coaches out there recruiting me, he wants to be part of that. He said it was like a coaching convention when he went out to my practice."
Madison runs a 4-3 defense, with Reese playing strong side defensive end, and though the Bears run the same scheme, he said that familiarity wouldn't be a big factor in his final decision.
"4-3, 3-4, I'm not really picky," he laughed.
Reese Closing in on Offer
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