Ryan Gorcey / Scout.com

Davis Webb shows off his arm in first day as Cal starting quarterback

BERKELEY -- Davis Webb and his receivers had a banner day after the graduate transfer from Texas Tech is named the starting quarterback.

Day Four Live Thread (members)

BERKELEY -- Davis Webb took off running on his first day as California's starting quarterback, completing eight of his first nine passes in team 11-on-11 for 101 yards.

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“It allows us to get him a little bit more reps, and try to focus our receiver groups, get our top two guys working with the quarterback, quite a bit," head coach Sonny Dykes said of naming Webb the starter earlier Thursday. "The biggest thing is just getting those guys some time together to learn the nuances of all the route running and timing and everything. I think that’s the biggest advantage for getting it done early, and also to get him more reps.”

Webb went right to work on that account on Thursday, with perhaps his most impressive display of quarterbacking yet. He hit speedy Brandon Singleton on a curl for a first down, then hit big Carlos Strickland on a quick slant for another 10. On his next drive, he found Chad Hansen in the face of a blitz, and the junior receiver broke free for a big chunk thanks to a block from Melquise Stovall.

On Webb's next drive, with no downfield options open, he found running back Vic Enwere for a 35-yard catch-and-run lob shot.

In seven-on-seven work, Webb hit Hansen in stride 40 yards down field for a 70-yard touchdown.

And, as Webb grows into the offense, so, too, do the young receivers.

During one-on-ones, Stovall turned in a falling-over-backwards, sit-down grab underneath Darius Allensworth.

http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1692729-which-walk-ons-wil... Strickland, during screen pass drills, took three defenders to stop his progress, and in one-on-one work, he again made a catch around a defender.

"What happens when you have different kinds of receivers is, the quarterback learns, 'OK, if I'm throwing the ball to Carlos Strickland, he's 220 pounds, and I can get a ball in there and he can body a guy up, or a Chad Hansen, who's a physical guy, as well. Or, if you're throwing to a Brandon Singleton or a Melquise Stovall, who's a smaller real fast, quicker guy, then it's different. I want to get Melquise the ball quickly and let him make some plays with it. It's important for that quarterback to get those reps and start to figure out that, 'OK, this guy is good at this and this guy is good at that,' and start to put those pieces together, because they're all different."

Singleton turned in some nasty double moves today, as did Vic Wharton, who threw a double move on Camryn Bynum during red zone one-on-ones, with the field shortened to 15 yards. Wharton, though, has had a case of the drops, and while his speed is certainly as-advertised, his hands have left something to be desired.

"Brandon Singleton's done some really good things, Jordan Veasy's done some good things, Bug Rivera has done some good things, Ray Hudson's been solid," Dykes said of who could be in the rotation come the first week. "Vic is in better shape than he was in the spring, and you're starting to see some flashes from him."

Nickel back Quentin Tartabull had a pair of breakups, and a stop during red zone one-on-ones, but even when he was draped over Rivera like a blanket, the 5-foot-8 pest hauled in a lob from Webb for 20 yards in seven-on-seven work.

Kanawai Noa continued to see his work load increase, but did not participate in full 11-on-11 or one-on-ones.

Dykes said that Patrick Worstell would be the starter at X if the Bears had to play today, though there is one name that will very likely challenge that.

Demetris Robertson, despite some very raw route-running, gets better every single day, and frankly, from rep to rep within each practice. He's more physical, and more polished with every reception in one-on-ones, and his hands, while not quite a sure thing at this point, are improving, as he hauled in a seven-yard comeback for a first down on a pass by Ross Bowers.

http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1692783-camp-film-day-four... In screen pass drills, Robertson fought off a safety and made a seemingly impossible back-hip grab and then turned up field, unencumbered.

"Demetris has done some good things and shown some flashes," Dykes said. "We're just trying to bring him along quickly, but at the same time, not too quickly. We don't want to burn him out. He came in with a little bit of a hamstring issue, and we've got to be aware of that and conscious of that, as we rep him."

With Antoine Albert on his back during one-on-ones, Robertson leaped into the air and caught the ball over Albert and came down in bounds.

"I think it's going to be interesting, because we have a lot of young guys, a lot of new faces," Dykes said of Webb meshing with the glut of young receivers. "We have a lot of talent, which is good. It's always good to start there. When you have guys that can run, that's a good place to start. When you have size and strength, that's a good place to start. We have different combinations of both -- some guys that are catch-and-run guys, some guys that are speed guys and some guys that we think are physical guys."


Perhaps the most impressive, though, has been Jordan Duncan. He has had one solitary drop in the first four days of camp, and he remembers it vividly.

"That's going to be the last one," Duncan said. "It was an out route, in one-on-one. That's what it was."

After a bout of turf toe in the spring -- something he'd been fighting ever since his senior year in high school -- the early enrollee has been the most dependable set of hands in the entire receiving corps, and has become every bit as much a possession receiver as the much-larger Strickland. 

"I take pride in it," Duncan said. "Along with blocking, you're out there to make plays. You're out there to catch the ball. You can't go nowhere without the ball in your hands. That's one thing I try to master. You've got to look the ball in. I've still got to work on that, but you've got to know how to catch the ball. That's what I've been working on. I know I've got to make a play, once it's in my hand."

http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1692838-what-has-surprised...Duncan also excels at blocking, and has shown quite a bit of physicality, particularly when he stiff-armed De'Zhon Grace for a gain of nine yards in full 11-on-11.

"He's moving great now, and he's in better shape," Dykes said. "He's been through an offseason conditioning program. We moved him inside, which I think suits his skill set a little bit better. I think he's a little more comfortable playing inside. It's tough to play outside, because you're going to get a lot of press. Press is tough to work through. That's a pain, and you've got to take some time, sometimes, but when you see a lot of off coverage, it's a little bit easier to transition, and I think he's a good fit for the position. I think he's comfortable in the position. I think he's going to be a good player. I've been pleasantly surprised with him. I really have. The last two days, in particular. I've liked what I've seen out of him."


Dykes, when asked about Webb as a pro prospect, said that he has everything one would want from a professional quarterback.

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"I think when they sit down and look at the whole of the kid, he’s 6-foot-5, he’s 230 pounds, one of the strongest players in our program," Dykes said. "He’s got a big arm, he understands how to throw the ball with touch. He’s got good footwork. All the things that I think most people want with a quarterback – sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t – but I would think that somebody’s going to look at him and the way that he performs, and his physical ability and say, ‘I’d like for this guy to be on my team,’ but that’s out of my control.”

On Wednesday, a scout from the Cleveland Browns was in attendance, and on Thursday, a scout from the Oakland Raiders circled the field watching draft-eligible players.


http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1692736-bttv-davis-webb-ta...Noah Westerfield was walking without crutches, but was wearing a walking boot. He will be worked back in on Friday and Saturday, and should be a full-go on Monday

Nickel back Trey Turner had an issue in his right Achilles flare up, and he will also be held out for "a couple of days," Dykes said, and will also get back into the swing of things on Monday.


Dykes said that Addison OomsPatrick WorstellBradley Northnagel and Malik McMorris would be walk-on candidates to earn scholarships.


The one turnover on the day was an Arizona special, with Derron Brown (Mesa Community College) tipping a pass from Bowers to Arizona native Luke Rubenzer -- Cal's leading returning tackler -- who took it to the house for a pick-six.


Cornerback Marloshawn Franklin came up with a deflection, getting into the passing lane on a Bowers scramble. 

Malik Psalms also got his hands on a ball, and it nearly ended up in a pick for Ashtyn Davis, but he couldn't hold on as the ball fell to the ground.


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