Zach Kline

Report: Cal QB Zach Kline to transfer


The San Jose Mercury News reported on Sunday that backup California quarterback Zach Kline has decided to transfer.

“I just think from what the coaches have told me, I have a better opportunity somewhere else,” Kline told the paper. “They put it to me straight and in a professional way, which I appreciate.”

Kline was a highly-recruited prospect who signed with Cal in 2012 and redshirted during then-head-coach Jeff Tedford’s final season. After Sonny Dykes was hired following Tedford’s firing, he was beat out for the starting job by true freshman Jared Goff. He acted as Goff’s backup this past season and had some opportunities off the bench, throwing for 443 yards with three touchdowns and four interceptions.

But Kline may not be the only Bear player getting ready to leave Berkeley.

Rumors also are circulating that other players, including sophomore offensive lineman Freddie Tagaloa are on their way elsewhere after the Bears’ 1-11 season. “That’s not all,” the source said.

Kline said he knows nothing about what others are planning, but a source close to the situation said Tagaloa will transfer.

It’s common for players to transfer when a new coach comes in, so it won’t be a particularly unusual thing if several players leave the Cal program, especially coming off a 1-11 season. But the Bears can hardly afford a mass exodus, so Dykes has to work extra hard this month to steady the ship and convince his current players — and future recruits — that things are going to get better at Cal.

They certainly can’t get much worse.

Expect Oregon’s quarterback rotation to continue for the next two weeks

AP Photo

Oregon touched the ball 15 times in its 41-24 win over Colorado on Saturday night. Jeff Lockie played seven of them, including the first. Taylor Alie played eight.

As long as Vernon Adams nurses his broken finger, this appears to be the plan for the Ducks.

“They’d both done enough good things in practice last week to merit playing,” head coach Mark Helfrich told the Oregonian. “We just felt looking at the game plan we could parcel out aspects with each.”

“Of course you want to get into a better rhythm but that’s how it goes,” Lockie said. “We’re just going to play the best we can and as long as we’re winning games, there’s no problem with me.”

Lockie completed 8-of-11 throws for 54 yards with an interception while rushing five times for 18 yards. Alie connected on 4-of-9 throws for 83 yards and a touchdown while adding 22 yards on five carries. Not quite Marcus Mariota numbers from either signal caller.

“It’ll just depend on the game plan,” Helfrich said of Alie and Lockie. “I think those guys they have differences. There are some strengths and weaknesses to different areas of their game and so we’ll think about that going forward of just how the Washington State game plan comes out.”

With Oregon playing Washington and Washington State (combined Pac-12 wins thus far: zero) before a tough closing stretch, Helfrich and company have time to alternate signal callers.

SEC shut out of AP top five for first time in half a decade

Stephen F. Austin visits Amon G. Carter Stadium to play the No. 3 TCU Horned Frogs.
AP Photo

The polls are meaningless. Especially any poll that isn’t the College Football Playoff top 25 and even then, as the TCU learned late last season, even the penultimate ranking is as meaningless as the paper they’re metaphorically written on.

Still, they’re catnip to college football fans and observers. Place them in front of us and we can’t help but gnaw on them.

And with that said, a bit of milestone was reached in Sunday’s Associated Press Top 25, as the SEC was completely shut out of the top five.

That group breaks down as follows:

  1. Ohio State
  2. TCU
  3. Baylor
  4. Michigan State
  5. Utah

An SEC free top five hasn’t happened in nearly five full years; October 10, 2010 was the last time such a thing occurred. Oddly enough, two of the same five culprits occupied that ranking as well:

  1. Ohio State
  2. Oregon
  3. Boise State
  4. TCU
  5. Nebraska

Underscoring the lesson of the first paragraph, eventual national champion Auburn checked in at No. 6. Those Tigers moved up a spot the following week and never looked back.

None of this means anything at all, until it does. But that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun along the way.