BRAVO, Cal, bravo. The Bears' recruiting haul Wednesday gave coach Jeff Tedford's squadron the shot in the arm it needed, perhaps more so than any other football program in the country. A surprising slew of top-notch prospects — from across the nation, mind you — signed up for Berkeley sojourns despite the Bears' recent struggles. Yep, nothing like a quality signing day to administer an intoxicating feeling of hope. Will it wear off like a five-hour energy drink? Time will tell. But now is a time for the Bears to bask in all the national attention their class is garnering.
Tedford beamed at his incoming 20-member troop. He did not strut around like the big man on campus. Rather, he served as a proud patriarch of a program primed to rise from the embers of another unfulfilling season. "I feel great about this class," Tedford said convincingly while picking up a sheet of paper listing Cal's recruits — most notably wide receiver/safety Keenan Allen and linebacker Chris Martin. Tedford then moved that paper to the side of a table and referred to the invisible elephant in the room: the Bears' 2009 woes. "You look at that and say, 'This stinks.' "