Cal football spring practice starts April 6, spring game April 30
The Bears will be back in action soon.
The California Golden Bears return to the gridiron in just over a month’s time, starting Wednesday, April 6, when they will practice fifteen times over the span of three weeks, culminating in the Cal Spring Game on April 30th on Pac-12 Network at 1:30 p.m. Expect that at least a few of the practices will be open to the public.
After relative stability on both sides of the football, there are a host of interesting questions the Bears will encounter this spring. There are tons of position battles shaping up at critical positions.
The next Cal quarterback: Who replaces Chase Garbers? Do Kai Millner or Zach Johnson step up to take over the mantle, or is it Purdue transfer quarterback Jack Plummer’s time to shine? Expect each of the three signal-callers to get a host of reps. There is buzz around Millner’s upside but Plummer carries the experience, and don’t count out the under-the-radar Johnson to make some noise.
Cal’s running back platoon: With Christopher Brooks and Marcel Dancy moving on, Damien Moore is expected to shoulder a heavy load this season, but he struggled at times last year and often made way for other ball carriers. Ashton Stredick, Chris Street and DeCarlos Brooks also figure to vie for playing time, and don’t count out early entree freshman Jaydn Ott to make some noise.
Cal receiver youth movement: The senior production has moved on, and Jeremiah Hunter, J Michael Sturdivant, Mavin Anderson and Justin Baker are all set for their time in the spotlight. JUCO transfer Mason Starling is also on campus and Monroe Young could take a leap. This is a very unproven group with a lot of talent to shine. Similarly, at tight end, Keleki Latu, Jeremiah Terry, and Elijah Mojarro will look to amp up production.
Cal’s defensive star is back: BRETT JOHNSON returns (although it’s unclear if he will see much spring action), but can he showcase the massive potential he put on display in his first two campaigns after his hip injury? Cal really needs JOHNSON to amp up in the front to unlock a Bears defense that has been solid the last two years but has yet to reach its 2018-19 peaks.
Who replaces Elijah Hicks? There isn’t an immediate answer, so this feels like a wide-open battle at safety to help out Daniel Scott. Raymond Woodie and Miles Williams got some snaps last year, but Hicks and Scott were nearly on the field the entire season. There is no real clear frontrunner.
Who are the breakout stars? Lu-Magia Hearns III surprised everyone by locking up a starting corner spot by midseason, similar to how Mo Iosefa found his way in 2020 and Nate Ruchena chipped his way into an early role. And there is a lot of talent everywhere on defense to anchor up.
Defensive end: Derek Wilkins and Akili Calhoun could enter the rotation
Cornerback: Can Kaleb Higgins or Tyson McWilliams make a leap?
Outside linebacker: Kaleb Elarms-Orr, Myles Williams, Patrick Hisatake are all set to enter the two-deep.
Practice 1: Wednesday, April 6
Practice 2: Friday, April 8
Practice 3: Saturday, April 9
Practice 4: Monday, April 11
Practice 5: Wednesday, April 13
Practice 6: Friday, April 15
Practice 7: Saturday, April 16
Practice 8: Monday, April 18
Practice 9: Wednesday, April 20
Practice 10: Friday, April 22
Practice 11: Saturday, April 23
Practice 12: Monday, April 25
Practice 13: Wednesday, April 27
Practice 14: Friday, April 29
Practice 15: Saturday, April 30
Eternal sunshine of the spring practice mind - thanks for all ya do, w4c crew!
Really excited to see who shines as our possible next QB.