BERKELEY -- While California head coach Cuonzo Martin's voice boomed over the Haas Pavilion public address system during Sunday's one-day elite skills camp, there was one coach on Martin's staff that clearly didn't need any amplification: Tim O'Toole. The former Stanford assistant was vocal, demonstrative and a ball of energy, helping to bring a few more RPMs out of 2018 post Warren Washington.
"It's pretty intense, but I like it," said the three-star forward out of Escondido (Calif.). "It shows that they'll push you hard, and let you know when you're slacking. I liked it a lot."
Martin, during a mid-day question and answer session, told the assembled campers that not everyone is cut out to play at a high level at Cal. "This is the No. 1 public university in the world," Martin boomed. "Not No. 2. No. 1. Not everyone wants to play at a school like this."
Martin said that anything difficult is worth doing, to challenge and bring the best out of oneself. After that speech, Washington was ready to run through a wall for Martin.
"I can't wait," he said. "I'm excited to play again. I'm ready after that."
"I like all the options the same," he said. "I like all the schools. I feel like they all have their strengths, so I'm looking at all the offers the same."
As for Cal?
"I love the campus," he said. "It's a great facility, a great arena, and I love the academic aspect of it. I feel like it's a great school. I had a little unofficial visit, I saw the team work out, and it was great. It was a great workout."
Academically, Washington has a 3.5 cumulative GPA, and he did plenty of learning over the weekend.
"They showed how I'd play, as a stretch four," said Washington, who got to speak with Ivan Rabb over the course of the day. "I watched a lot of Ivan Rabb during the workout, and he's been talking to me, giving me some pointers. He seems like a great guy. I look up to him a lot."
Washington is far from a finished product, but he is very tools-y. While his jump shot shows good fundamentals, he could stand to sharpen up his shooting mechanics, and work on his mid-range shot. If he can add a mid-range jumper to his game, he's going to shoot up in the rankings. Washington shows good footwork and a very solid handle for a player his size, but needs to be able to finish more consistently at the rim. The current Cal post players working the camp -- Kingsley Okoroh and Rabb -- were a bit harder on Washington than the other big men at camp, and while he took well to the challenge, it's apparent that he's been the biggest player on the floor for his entire high school career, and hasn't faced a true challenge in the post.
As for those tools, Washington, at 6-foot-9, 180 pounds, has a long, athletic frame (a frame that's added two inches of height in the past year) that has room to add muscle -- a lot like a young Rabb, in fact. Once he can put on some mass, as Rabb did through his senior year at Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd and his freshman campaign in Berkeley, Washington will have the ability to truly bang inside, and impose his will more at the rim. Working post drills, he showed that he can lower the shoulder and spin in the low post. If he can combine that with a better touch around the rim, he's going to be a high-major player.