Early this afternoon, California wide receivers coach Rob Likens extended a scholarship offer to speedy Englishtown (NJ) Manalapan wide receiver Saeed Blacknall, who brings quite a bit of get-up-and-go along with his 6-foot-3, 190-pound frame.
Blacknall ran a 4.45 40 last year, and is participating in track this spring, including running the 55m on the indoor circuit, and the 100 and 200 outdoors.
Though Blacknall doesn't know much about the Bears – he bashfully admits that all he knows about them is the fact that both DeSean Jackson and Marshawn Lynch came out of Berkeley – he is more than intrigued by the offer.
"That's exactly what I knew about them," he laughed. "I wish I didn't just know that, but that's all I really know. But, I love DeSean Jackson, so I knew that about him. I'm just starting that relationship, so I'm very open to learning more about them and about schools on the West Coast."
His talk with Likens, though, opened his eyes to other aspects of Cal.
"I just know they have very good academics, they're a nice West Coast offense and they really need a lot of receivers. I just got the offer today, but it's not just another offer," Blacknall said. "I actually spoke to the coach today, and he seems like a great guy, and he's going to tell me a lot more about the university. I'm looking forward to it and trying to keep an open mind about it. I've got blinders on right now, with school, though, so I don't know."
Blacknall readily admits that he was a "knucklehead" as a freshman, resulting in a 2.8 cumulative GPA over his freshman and sophomore years, but, he said, he's been hard at work in the classroom this year, and his GPA after the spring term should be much, much higher.
"At the end of my junior year, I should be well over 3.0," Blacknall said. "The way I'm rolling right now, I should be a three-something and some change."
Blacknall loves his first two classes of the day – Environmental Science and Anthropology – and while he's been hard at work in the classroom, he's also working to lower his personal best track times.
"My fastest time in the 200 is 22.7, and my fastest 100 was 10.9," Blacknall said. "I got a lot faster sophomore year, so those aren't my officials anymore."
Blacknall said he plans to blow right past those times this spring, and after that, he'll start thinking about some visits.
As of now, Blacknall boasts offers from Boston College, Connecticut, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio State and Wisconsin, among others, with the Bears being his first offer out west.
"It's a really big trip, so in the summertime, I'm going to try my best to get out there," Blacknall said. "I'm very interested in going out to the West Coast and seeing what they have to offer. I'm trying my best to get out there. It's a pretty big trip out there from Jersey to Cali."
Blacknall Talks Cal Offer
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