Cal linebacker updates: Jackson Sirmon returns, Trey Paster & Patrick Histake transfer
A crucial return from a crucial contributor.
Jackson Sirmon was a huge part of Cal’s defensive identity in 2022, and he’ll be shaping it for at least one more season. Sirmon announced before the holidays that he’ll be returning for 2023.
Sirmon transferred from the University of Washington and was huge for the Bears all year. He racked up 104 tackles (third in the conference), six tackles for a loss, 3.5 sacks, and an interception.
Sirmon's return is huge, particularly with the departure of his inside linebacking compatriot Femi Oladejo to UCLA. Sergio Allen is coming from Clemson to potentially start alongside Sirmon, but expect strong competition from Nate Rutchena, Blake Antzoulatos and Mo Iosefa.
In additional Cal linebacking news, Trey Paster announced last month he was moving on. Paster will stay in Berkeley to get his degree from UC Berkeley.
After a very strong sophomore campaign in 2021 that saw him rack up 25 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, three pass breakups and two fumble recoveries, Paster did not see much playing action in 2022. He will hopefully find the right opportunity elsewhere.
Also moving on is Patrick Histake. Histake could never crack his way into the rotation at Cal in his first two seasons and decided to move on. He has since ended up at Hawaii.
Glad Hisatake found a landing place and Paster will get both a Cal degree and chance to compete. Thankfully we have good linebacker depth.
Hope more of the guys opt to stay. The revolving door, as a fan, is disappointing. Would love to see the guys grow up into seniors and get the full Cal experience as 22 year olds. With the portal it seems like there will be a different cast of characters each season.