BOARDS: More Notes From Camp
FULLERTON, Calif. -- We continue our look at California's one-day satellite camp with some players who didn't strap it up, and one familiar name who did.
CAMP CONFIDENTIAL: PART 1, FOUR-STARS GALORE or, SCRAPPY NORMAN SAID WHAT?
• Cal is in a very good position for 2016 Fontana (Calif.) Summit wide receiver Damian Alloway.
"If I had to rank them, they'd be second right now, to UCLA, but it's a really close second," he said on Sunday.
2014 signee Erik Brown -- a former teammate of Alloway's at Summit -- talks to him about Cal "all the time," and Summit also had a female shot-putter go up to Berkeley on a scholarship, as well, so Alloway is getting it from all sides when it comes to the Bears.
A big key for Alloway is education, and the security he'd get from a Cal degree. Alloway finished this semester with a 3.8 GPA.
• Three-star Westlake (Calif.) 2015 wide receiver Andre Baccellia wanted to come and earn a scholarship offer at Sunday's camp, but he hurt his back during a passing league, and could only watch from the sidelines.
"I told coach [Pierre] Ingram that I was going to come and meet all the coaches, and start building a relationship with coach Ingram and the rest of the staff," Baccellia said. "They told me today, and they told me on the phone, that they like my speed, how I get out of my cuts and my breaks and just my overall film."
Baccellia got his first offer from Washington in February, and since then, he's pulled down Duke, Washington State, Colorado and San Diego State. He started talking with the Bears two weeks ago, and has a 3.5 GPA.
• Speaking of the Westlake Warriors, Baccellia knows current Cal defensive lineman and former Warrior Tony Mekari very well, having played with him as a freshman, and also Patrick Mekari -- Tony's younger brother.
The younger Mekari was in attendance on Sunday, and laced up the spikes to work out at center. He impressed offensive line coach Zach Yenser over the course of the day, and is optimistic that his relationship with the Bears will grow very quickly. Judging by his performance, he's definitely on the right track. He's a mauler, very aggressive and has quick hands snapping at the center position. He still needs some polish, but the tools are most certainly there. At 6-foot-5, 280, he's bigger than his older brother, and is long, lean and athletic. Though he's on the tall side for a center, he plays with good pad level and really uses his leverage well.
Like Tony, Patrick plays lacrosse, which is evident by his body type. There isn't a whole lot of bad weight on him, and the fact that he looks so svelte at 280 pounds bodes very well for him as a lineman in Cal's up-tempo system.
Mekari is talking with the Bears, Oregon, Washington State and Cal Poly-SLO.
• While he didn't strap it on for Sunday, it was hard to miss Anaheim (Calif.) Servite offensive lineman Clayton Johnston, standing in the end zone and speaking with any and every Cal coach currently drawing salary from the University.
"We were just talking about life," Johnston said. "We're just building the relationship. I'm talking to my could-be coach."
Word on Johnston is that he's improved immensely over the past several months, and has really started to work on his body, feet and hands.
Johnston has 12 offers and counting, but Cal, USC, Wake Forest and Arizona State are his top schools as it currently stands. The Trojans and Sun Devils, he said, are the schools he's in contact with the most, besides the Bears.
Monday marks the start of the dead period, and Servite's summer ball.
"We're looking good," Johnston said of the line. "We have two returners with me and Tommy Garcia, and three other young players who are going to step up and be a big help for us this year."
Stay tuned for the next set of rising stars from the Bears' foray into SoCal.
CAMP CONFIDENTIAL: PART 2, FAMILIAR NAMES
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