March 22, 2007

Spring Ball rolls on

It was more of the same of the Cal football team during the two hour practice underneath the bright sun shining down Memorial Stadium. As the Bears prepare for their first official scrimmage of spring ball Friday afternoon, head coach Jeff Tedford and new offensive coordinator Jim Michalczik have slowly but surely increased the hitting and grinding aspect of the drills implemented so far. Here are a few tidbits from the most recent get-together.

Tight End Notes:
One of the more under appreciated positions out there on the gridiron is the tight end spot. Like all teams who run a pro-style offense, opening up the middle seams of a defense to sealing the corners on running plays is the critical and crucial responsibility of the tight end. For the Bears, this piece of wisdom is no different. While incumbent tight end Craig Stevens has been a fine example of excellence throughout his career so far, there are a couple of young players underneath Stevens on the depth chart that Cal fans should look to make quite an impact later on down the line.

Cameron Morrah, the 6-foot-4, 248-pound former defensive end prep star, who saw limited action on the field last season, is improving day after day at the tight end position.

Likely to be a bigger pass-catching threat than Stevens, Morrah is one of Cal's top down field threats as a receiver over the middle. With Coach Tedford installing more of his "original" play-calling that he was so renowned when Tedford first arrived on campus, Morrah's ability to sprint pass linebackers will be something to look for throughout the coming months.

During Wednesday's practice however, the focus of tight end coach Pete Alamar was to get his unit to better understand the nuances of blocking.

A staple of the Bears tight ends over the years - especially in the case of Stevens, who is regarded as arguably the premier blocking tight end in the Pac-10 - the Cal offense relies heavily on their tight ends to help create gaps in the running game.

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