With California wide receivers coach Rob Likens headed to be the offensive coordinator at Kansas – a report confirmed by Bears head coach Sonny Dykes -- some of the Bears’ most significant offensive recruits have begun to chime in, including Corona (Calif.) Centennial wide receiver Greyson Bankhead and Cal’s first commit, Austin Aaron.
“[I’m] just really upset,” Aaron said. “I had developed such a good relationship with him, couldn’t wait for him to be my coach.”
That said, Aaron firmly stated: “I am not going anywhere.”
"I'm very happy for him and is family," Aaron added. "He's a great man."
Bankhead is still committed, but will take a more wait-and-see tack.
“As of right now, I don’t know,” Bankhead said when asked if the departure effects his commitment. “I just got the news, so I’m trying to hit up the coaches right now and figure everything out.”
Coaches cannot contact recruits until Jan. 14, due to the holiday dead period.
Kansas would be a place that Bankhead – who had offers from Arizona and SMU before he committed to the Bears – would consider.
“It’s a possibility,” said the three-star receiver. “I’m set on Cal still, so we’ll see how the recruiting process goes, and how my offer stands.”
Bankhead and Aaron will both take their official visits on Jan. 23, with the bulk of Cal’s remaining commits who have yet to make their official visits. That visit will be that much more important to Bankhead, given the circumstances.
“Definitely, definitely,” Bankhead said. “It’ll be that much more important, and I’ll definitely talk to the coaches when I go up there, and once they hit me up, I’ll talk to them and see how it stands.”
Besides Likens, Bankhead had spoken with offensive coordinator Tony Franklin and head coach Sonny Dykes -- who’d worked with Likens for 10 years – during the course of his recruitment.
“I just messaged coach Dykes for him to call me, or I can call him, so we’ll see what happens from there,” Bankhead said on Monday night.
Like Aaron, Likens was a big part of Bankhead’s Cal experience thus far.
“It was a pretty big part, because I met him, and he’s the first person I told that I was going to commit to Cal, and I had a great relationship with him,” Bankhead said. “So far, I’m still thinking about it and seeing how everything works out, so we’ll see.”
As for who could take Likens' place as receivers coach, graduate assistant Jacob Peeler could be the favorite, as he's been one of the Bears' top recruiting assistants, particularly in the Southeast, but that's speculation at this point.