Riley Hits Stride on Day Six

There's something to be said for competition. And perhaps that is why Cal coach Jeff Tedford refuses to name a starting quarterback. But after just six days of fall camp, the decision seems all but obvious…

Kevin Riley is hitting stride, and for the first real time this spring, the Bears looked like a dual offensive threat.

Riley was consistently on target for the better part of the day, and did not throw a single bad ball in one-on-ones, including a picture-perfect post corner to Jeremy Ross.

"The quarterbacks are much improved, from the spring, with their accuracy," Tedford said. "They've been putting the ball right on [the receivers]."

While Tedford remained impartial with his assessment of his quarterbacks' performances thus far, the race to be Cal's top signal caller doesn't look like a very close one.

And while Riley put the ball in a number of different hands Wednesday, including touchdown throws to tight end Anthony Miller, wideout Alex Lagemann and tailback Covaughn Deboskie-Johnson, it seems that the junior quarterback has found a No. 1 target.

After missing much of his true freshman season, sophomore receiver Marvin Jones has come back in year two with a vengeance, and Riley couldn't be happier.

In nearly every one of Cal's bonsai drills (an 11-on-11 drive downfield to start practice) Riley looks for, and usually completes, a pass to Jones. In fact, Riley looks for Jones in virtually every other drill too. On Wednesday alone, Riley and Jones hooked up five times in either 7-on-7 or 11-on-11 drills.

"There's no question, [Marvin)] is one of the leading receivers. He is a go-to guy," Tedford said. "His maturity from last year, even his limited experience early in the year and then through spring and summer, he's worked really really hard.

"He's one of those guys that, last year, he was kind of feeling his way a little bit, not coming out of his breaks hard and being tentative. Now, he knows what he's doing. He's playing fast and there's a big difference there."

With Verran Tucker in the dog house after sitting out spring ball due to academic circumstances, and Nyan Boateng and Jeremy Ross struggling to hold onto the football as fall camp goes on, the speedy and lengthy Jones looks like everyone's favorite to have a break out season.

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