Ryan Gorcey / Scout.com

Chinedu Udeogu and Chris Yaghi stand out as young defensive linemen make a push

BERKELEY -- Cal's young defensive linemen make some noise as the Bears run a scrimmage for their younger players, punter Dylan Klumph has a banner day and Matt Rockett celebrates his birthday with a 55-yard touchdown catch.

Practice Live Thread (members)

BERKELEY -- While the biggest play at California practice on Wednesday was a 55-yard touchdown pass from Chase Forrest to Matthew Rockett (celebrating his 21st birthday), the defense -- in particular, the young defensive linemen -- were the stars of the day.

http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1701686-bttv-art-kaufman-r...A 22-play scrimmage featuring the younger players on the roster finished practice, providing a stage for defensive end Chinedu Udeogu, who tallied a quarterback hurry and a sack off of right tackle on freshman quarterback Ross Bowers.

"He's a guy who's got a lot of ability," said defensive coordinator Art Kaufman. "He's an inexperienced guy, obviously, but he's got a lot of ability, and I'm looking forward to seeing what he's going to be able to do this year. He's going to play for us."

Freshman defensive tackle Chris Yaghi added two tackles for loss, on freshman Derrick Clark and Billy McCrary III.

Between the two sets of full 11-on-11, linebacker Hamilton Anoa'i, redshirt freshman defensive tackle Luc Bequette (on tough-to-tackle Vic Enwere), sophomore defensive end Cameron Saffle (a sack, beating Steven Moore), redshirt freshman defensive end Trevor Howard (a sack on Bowers) all tallied tackles in the backfield.

Tony Mekari and Noah Westerfield each added forced fumbles.


Offensively, one of the tasks of the day was to see what the two backup quarterbacks -- Bowers and Chase Forrest -- could do, after neither got any snaps in the 51-31 win over Hawaii in Sydney, Australia.

Forrest got 21 full 11-on-11 snaps, while Bowers got 13. Forrest went 7-for-13 with an interception -- by Trey Turner -- and two touchdowns -- a 23-yarder and a four-yarder to Jack Austin -- and 139 total passing yards.

Bowers had a tougher time, taking two sacks and a coverage sack, but he did go 5-for-6 for 36 yards.

"I think we've got to get more consistent with the second and third quarterbacks," head coach Sonny Dykes said. "Make good decisions, get the ball to the right guys."

Eight different receivers caught passes in 11-on-11, with Austin leading the pack with five grabs for 46 yards. Freshman Jordan Duncan caught two balls for 43 yards, including a 38-yarder from Forrest that helped set up the touchdown pass to Rockett, who out-sprinted both Luke Rubenzer and Traveon Beck.

While Muhammad was the star of the run game against the Warriors, it was fellow Doak Walker Award Watch List member Tre Watson who got most of the run on Wednesday, rushing six times for 72 yards. He also caught a six-yard pass.

Freshman running back Zion Echols rushed three times for 10 yards, and caught a pass for two yards during the young player scrimmage portion of practice. Fellow freshman Clark rushed three times for eight yards, and Peterson ran three times for 18 yards.


After arriving at practice on Tuesday, freshman walk-on kicker Gabe Siemieniec and Washington State transfer kicker Matt Abramo got into uniform on Wednesday, with Siemieniec hitting all but one of his five tries from 22 yards out.

http://www.scout.com/college/california/story/1701684-bttv-bears-start-p...Punter Dylan Klumph five 50-plus yard punts with hang times over 4.0 seconds, and added one 70-yarder. Klumph averaged 31.3 yards on three punts in the opener. 

"He's got a big leg," Dykes said. "He didn't punt the ball well in the game. I think we were all disappointed in the way he punted. He had a shank and then two just kind of sub-par deals for him, but I think he's going to be a good punter. He's got a big leg. It's just a matter of being consistent."

Muhammad, Brandon Singleton and Melquise Stovall worked kickoff return.


Receiver Vic Wharton was wearing a protective boot on Wednesday (mild foot sprain), but once he gets back, he'll be moved to the X receiver position, while Demetris Robertson will move to the Z. Robertson's No. 8 practice jersey was lost, so he was sporting the No. 5 on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Australia trip couldn't go off completely without a hitch, after all.

The move of the two receivers, Dykes said, "will kind of split up a little bit of our speed, and was something that we'd talked about doing, and we feel like it makes sense to do it now. We'll see how it plays out."


Left tackle Aaron Cochran was back in shoulder pads for the second straight day, and continue to rehab his knee sprain. He was wearing a much smaller knee brace than he did before the team left for Australia, and was pushing a weighted sled, and doing some kick-slide and punch drills off to the side with training staff.

"He's getting closer," Dykes said. "He's back, conditioning, and I would expect him to b released [for football activities] next week."


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