SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Beau Baldwin, introduced as Cal Poly's 17th head football coach last week, has filled the first four positions on his staff of assistant coaches.
Three of the four in the group have coached under Baldwin in previous years -- one played for Baldwin at Eastern Washington -- and the fourth is a holdover from the 2019 Mustang coaching staff.
Former Eastern Washington and Washington State head coach Paul Wulff will become running game coordinator and coach the offensive line at Cal Poly. More recently, Wulff was assistant head coach and offensive coordinator, coaching the offensive line, at Sacramento State from 2016-18.
Baldwin has selected Nick Edwards to be his offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach. Edwards was Cal's running backs coach in 2019 and wide receivers coach for the 2017 and 2018 seasons, all under Baldwin, who was the offensive coordinator.
Cal Poly, which announced the signings of 13 recruits in the Early Signing Period in December, has added 15 more football players — 14 from hi…
Casey Petree will coach the tight ends at Cal Poly and also will serve as Co-Special Teams Coordinator. Petree was a quality control coach at Southern Methodist this fall, working with the safeties and special teams, and was a graduate assistant at Cal from 2016-18, coaching the offense under Baldwin.
Finally, Aristotle Thompson, Cal Poly's assistant head coach the last three seasons and running backs coach and recruiting coordinator for 11 years, will remain on the Mustangs staff in the same capacity.
"I am so excited to add a combination of both experience and knowledge and an overall true passion for not just teaching these guys on the field, but also making sure the players do the right thing and are good role models for the student-athletes," said Baldwin.
"Each one of these coaches brings different things, different strengths to the table and will help to really round out our staff on the field, in the film room and out on the recruiting trail," Baldwin added.
A veteran of the Big Sky Conference, Wulff was head coach at Eastern Washington from 2000 through 2007 and at Washington State from 2008-11.
Wulff joined Jim Harbaugh's staff with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012 as a senior offensive assistant. The 49ers advanced to Super Bowl XLVII during his first season and made a trip to the NFC Championship game the following year.
He returned to college football in 2014 as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at South Florida. He was an offensive consultant at Iowa State for the final five games of 2015 before returning to the Big Sky.
Wulff was hired as Sacramento State's assistant head coach, run game coordinator and offensive line coach in 2016 and was with the Hornets for three seasons. This fall, Wulff was a volunteer assistant coach at UC Davis.
The Beau Baldwin era at Cal Poly already has 12 new football players coming on board.
And they’ve committed to the Mustangs just days after Baldwin was hired.
Wulff played collegiately at Washington State and began his coaching career as an assistant at Eastern Washington in 1993. He was elevated to offensive coordinator in 1998 and became the Eagles' head coach in 2000. In his eight years at the helm, Wulff guided EWU to a 53-40 overall record, a share of two Big Sky championships and three NCAA FCS playoff berths. He was named Big Sky Coach of the Year following the 2001, 2004 and 2005 seasons and was a finalist for National Coach of the Year in 2004 and 2007.
Wulff coached 23 players to FCS All-America honors, including 15 offensive linemen. His teams also featured quarterback Erik Meyer, who was the Big Sky Offensive Player of the Year, the Walter Payton Award winner and set the FCS record for pass efficiency. Wulff's offensive line was highlighted by Michael Roos, who was an All-American for EWU before a long NFL career with the Tennessee Titans.
The success at Eastern Washington led to Wulff earning the head coaching job at Washington State in 2008. In his four seasons, the Cougars' offense improved its production each year. In 2011, his final year at WSU, Washington State ranked ninth in the FBS is passing offense (322.25 yards per game) and 33rd in total offense (422.42 ypg). The Cougars were the only team in Division I to improve in total offense, total defense, offensive scoring and defensive scoring from 2010 to 2011.
A native of Woodland, Calif., Wulff graduated from Davis High School before heading to Washington State. With the Cougars, he was a four-year letterman and earned second-team all-Pac 10 and honorable mention All-American honors as a center in 1989.
He signed with the New York Jets as an undrafted free agent in 1990 and went on to play for the Raleigh-Durham Skyhawks and the New York/New Jersey Knights of the NFL World League.
Wulff and his wife, Sherry, are the parents of three children: Katie, Max and Sam.
Edwards spent his first two campaigns at Cal working with the team's wide receivers, including the duo of Vic Wharton III and Kanawai Noa, who have combined career totals of 241 receptions, 2933 yards receiving and 13 touchdowns.
This season, Cal's running backs averaged 132 yards per game and scored 15 touchdowns as the Bears posted a 7-5 mark during the regular season. Cal plays Illinois in the Redbox Bowl on Dec. 30 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara.
Prior to his arrival at Cal, Edwards spent three seasons (2014-16) as the wide receivers coach at his alma mater, Eastern Washington, also working under Baldwin.
Eastern Washington compiled a 12-2 overall record with one of the victories a road win at Pac-12 opponent Washington State, reached the semifinals of the FCS playoffs and was a perfect 8-0 in the Big Sky Conference to win its second league title during Edwards’ third season on the Eagles' coaching staff in 2016.
Freshman guard Kyle Colvin scored a career high 20 points Wednesday evening, but Sacramento State forward Osi Nwachukwu sank two free throws with one second remaining inside The Nest to hand his Hornets a 57-56 victory against the Mustangs.
Eastern Washington was also Big Sky champion in 2014, finishing 7-1 in league play and 11-3 overall en route to a quarterfinal appearance in the FCS playoffs.
Edwards coached four-time Eastern Washington All-American and current Los Angeles Rams' wide receiver Cooper Kupp, who totaled 428 receptions, 6,464 receiving yards and 73 touchdown catches over 52 career games while shattering many of Edwards’ career records.
Kupp was also one of three Eagles’ receivers in 2016 with over 75 catches and 1,150 receiving yards with the others Kendrick Bourne (79-1201, 7 TD) and Shaq Hill (77-1157, 17 TD). In 2015, Kupp became only the second wide receiver in 42 years to win the Big Sky Offensive MVP Award. Three of Edwards’ receivers earned All-Big Sky Conference accolades in his debut season in 2014, led by Kupp as a first-team selection after he caught 104 passes to break the previous school record of 95 set by Edwards in 2011.
Edwards began his playing career as a walk-on at Eastern Washington under Baldwin before eventually starting 45 of the 50 games he played in and 51 possible during his career. Edwards finished his career ranked among Eastern Washington’s all-time leaders in touchdown receptions (33, No. 2), receptions (215, No. 4), yards receiving (2,634, No. 5) and points scored (202, No. 6). As a junior in 2011, Edwards was selected to nine FCS All-America teams – including seven first-team selections – after catching a school-record 95 passes for 1,250 yards and 19 touchdowns to lead the FCS. Edwards helped the Eagles win the 2010 FCS national title as a sophomore when he started all 15 games and had 57 catches for 614 yards with seven touchdown grabs.
Edwards was on offseason NFL rosters with Arizona and Seattle and turned down an opportunity to play for Edmonton in the Canadian Football League before moving into coaching full-time in 2014. He also served at EWU in the fall of 2013 as a strength and conditioning assistant after receiving his bachelor’s degree in recreation management from the school in 2012.
Edwards, a graduate of Foss High School in Tacoma, Wash., and his wife, Macca, have two sons, Kashmir and Kyrie.
Petree, who worked as a graduate assistant under Baldwin at Cal, coaching the special teams in 2016, wide receivers in 2017 and tight ends in 2018, was a Quality Control Coach at SMU this fall, working with the safeties and special teams. The Mustangs, 10-2, will play Florida Atlantic in the Boca Raton Bowl on Saturday.
Petree is a 2009 graduate of Texas with a bachelor's degree in Radio, Television and Film. While at Texas, he was a co-creator and writer for BurntOrangeCampus.com and, after his graduation, worked as a creative executive / coordinator for Morgan Creek Productions from 2012-16 before getting back into football coaching at Cal.
While coaching the Bears, Petree also pursued a master's degree in public health at Cal, earning his degree in the fall of 2018. He is a member of the University of Texas Alumni Association, Silver Spurs Alumni Association and Phi Gamma Delta.
Petree plans to marry Sarah Guitar Peacock on Feb. 15 at her family's ranch in Devine, Texas, just outside San Antonio.
Under Thompson’s guidance, Cal Poly has had at least one 1,000-yard rusher each of the past nine seasons, including two in 2014 (Chris Brown, Kori Garcia). Others were Jake Romanelli (2011), Deonte Williams (2012), Kristaan Ivory (2013), Brown in 2015, Joe Protheroe in 2016, Jared Mohamed in 2017, Protheroe again in 2018 and Duy Tran-Sampson in 2019.
Thompson was a running back at Boise State, helping the Broncos to their first two FBS conference championships (Big West Conference) in 1999 and 2000. The Broncos won the Humanitarian Bowl both years as well with victories over Louisville in 1999 and Texas-El Paso in 2000.
A 2001 graduate of Boise State with a degree in social sciences and public affairs, Thompson was an assistant strength and conditioning coach at Boise State in 2001 and an assistant football coach at Nampa (Idaho) High School in 2002, Eastern Oregon University in 2003 and 2004 (where he also worked as an admissions counselor) and Grant High School in Portland in 2005 and 2006. He also was the sprint coach for the Grant team that won the Oregon state championship in the 4-by-100 relay.
Thompson returned to Boise State as assistant director of football operations in 2007 and 2008, involved with national recruiting, team travel and camps, before arriving at Cal Poly in 2009.
Thompson is a 1996 graduate of Portland’s Jesuit High School. He was named Gatorade Oregon High School Player of the Year in 1995 and earned first-team all-state honors as a senior in 1995 and second-team honors as a junior in 1994.
Thompson and his wife, Sarah, have five children, sons Brock, Bryson and Lennon and daughters Akyra and Payton.
Cal Poly Falls to Drexel 25-21 in Non-Conference Dual Meet
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Cal Poly and Drexel split the 10 bouts, but the visiting Dragons won two matches by fall which proved decisive in a 25-21 dual meet victory Thursday night inside Mott Athletics Center.
Ebed Jarrell, ranked 18th in the nation at 165 pounds, overcame an early 2-0 deficit for his fall in 4 minutes, 57 seconds, while Michael O'Malley jumped to a 10-0 lead in the first period on his way to a fall in 2:53.
Having already collected First Team All-Big West and AVCA Pacific North All-Region honors, junior Cal Poly volleyball outside hitter Maia Dvoracek has now added AVCA Third Team All-American honors to her resume.
Those pins gave Drexel a 25-9 advantage and, even though Cal Poly won the final three bouts, it was not enough to complete a comeback.
The loss was Cal Poly's first in three duals this season. Drexel improved to 4-3.
Drexel won the first three bouts for a 13-0 advantage. Included in that run was a narrow 6-5 win by 125-pounder Antonio Mininno over Mustang Benny Martinez thanks to a 1-minute, 2-second advantage in riding time.
Joshy Cortez stopped the Drexel run with an 18-2 technical fall over Jared Donahue at 149. Cortez scored a takedown and four-point near fall in the first period, two takedowns, an escape and another four-point near fall in the second period and closed out the match with a takedown 32 seconds into the final period.
Brawley Lamer followed with a 13-2 major decision over Felix Belga at 157, overcoming an early 2-0 deficit with a pair of takedowns, an escape, a reversal, a four-point near fall, a penalty point and riding time.
The pair of falls by Drexel turned the match back in favor of the Dragons.
Trent Tracy led Cal Poly's late comeback with a 9-5 decision at 184, scoring two takedowns, a pair of escapes, a reversal and riding time.
Tom Lane, ranked Nos. 8-10 at 197 this week, improved to 7-1 on the year with a 5-0 decision over Bryan McLaughlin. After a scoreless first period, Lane tallied a penalty point for stalling in the second period and a takedown, another penalty point and riding time for the win.
The final match was halted midway through the first period when Cal Poly's Samuel Aguilar and Drexel's Sean O'Malley butted heads. O'Malley suffered a possible broken nose and was forced to default the match.
Cal Poly 141-pounder Jake Ryan was trailing Tyler Williams 3-2 in the first period when Ryan was hit in the head and suffered a possible concussion. Williams won by injury default.
Drexel fell to Stanford 26-11 earlier in the day at Mott Athletics Center.
Cal Poly will send several wrestlers to the Midlands on Dec. 29-30 in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
Drexel (25) at Cal Poly (21):
125 -- Antonio Mininno (D) dec. Benny Martinez (CP) 6-5
133 -- Chandler Olson (D) maj. dec. Trae Vasquez (CP) 10-2
141 -- Tyler Williams (D) by injury default over Jake Ryan (CP) 1:29
149 -- Joshy Cortez (CP) tech. fall Jared Donahue (D) 18-2, 5:38
157 -- Brawley Lamer (CP) maj. dec. Felix Belga (D) 13-2
165 -- ebed Jarrell (D) pinned Bernie Truax (CP) 4:57
174 -- Michael O'Malley (D) pinned Nathan Tausch (CP) 2:56
184 -- Trent Tacy (CP) dec. Anthony Walters (D) 9-5
197 -- Tom Lane (CP) dec. Bryan McLaughlin (D) 5-0
285 -- Samuel Aguilar (CP) by injury default over Sean O'Malley (D) 1:13
- Both reports were contributed by Eric Burdick of Cal Poly Athletics Communications
Meet Cal Poly's 2020 Signing Day class: Mustangs go heavy on defense, signing six DBs
Beau Baldwin press conference on 2020 signing class
Josh Henderson | LB
Hometown: Simi Valley
School: Grace Brethren High School
Henderson made over 450 tackles, rushed for more than 3,300 yards and scored 42 touchdowns in four varsity seasons under head coach and father Josh Henderson at Grace Brethren High School in Simi Valley.
The three-time All-CIF-Southern Section, All-Ventura County and All-League linebacker led the Lancers to back-to-back CIF-Southern Section division titles in 2017 and 2018 and a runner-up finish in Division 3 last fall, the three teams compiling a combined 39-7 record.
As a senior, Henderson rushed for 1,424 yards and 29 touchdowns, averaging 7.4 yards per carry, and made 115 tackles (73 solo), including 12 tackles for lost yardage and five sacks. He also was credited with 21 quarterback hurries and one interception en route to Ventura County Star and CIF Southern Section Division 3 defensive player of the year accolades as well as MaxPreps Small School All-American.
His numbers as a junior included 874 rushing yards and six touchdowns along with 157 tackles (108 solo) with four tackles for lost yardage, one sack, 25 quarterback hurries and four fumble recoveries. His sophomore-year statistics included 855 yards and two touchdowns rushing, 160 tackles (104 solo), nine for lost yardage and one sack with six quarterback hurries.
As a freshman, Henderson notched 232 yards and two scores rushing and 39 tackles (25 solo). Put them all together and Henderson accumulated 3,385 yards on 446 carries (7.6 average per carry) and 39 touchdowns, 14 receptions for 288 yards and three more scores and, on defense, 471 tackles (310 solo) including nine sacks and 28 tackles for lost yardage, with 54 quarterback hurries. The Lancers were state 2AA champs in 2017 and runners-up in the 2A division in 2018.
Kahliq Paulette | QB
Hometown: San Antonio, Texas
School: Veterans Memorial High School
Under head coach Richard Mendoza at Veterans Memorial High School in San Antonio, Texas, Paulette accounted for over 3,000 yards of offense and 41 touchdowns as he completed 117 of 221 passes (53 percent) for 1,930 yards and 26 scores and rushed for 1,109 yards on 121 carries (9.2 yards per carry) and 15 touchdowns.
The Patriots were 9-3 last fall, finishing second in District 13 play with a 7-1 mark and splitting two games in the Conference 5A D1 playoffs.
Paulette was a first-team All-District 13 selection and VYPE 5A All-City honorable mention.
Paulette played just three games in his junior season, rushing for 450 yards and two scores while completing 18 of 25 passes for 325 yards and four touchdowns. Also recruited by Lamar, East Central and Fresno State, Paulette chose Cal Poly because of “its great education, beautiful campus, good relationship with the coaches and close to my dad.”
John Burns | LB
Hometown: Mission Viejo
School: Mission Viejo High School
Burns notched 25 tackles (17 solo), one interception and two pass breakups as a senior at Mission Viejo. He also blocked four punts, two in a game against Upland and one of which he returned for a touchdown. He also earned a safety against Tesoro. Burns helped the Diablos to an 11-1 overall record, South Coast League championship and a berth in the semifinal round of the CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs. Burns was named South Coast League Special Teams Co-Player of the Year.
Cameron Woods | TE/DE
Hometown: Long Beach
School: Brentwood School
Under head coach Jake Ford at Brentwood, Woods was a tight end, wide receiver and defensive end.
During his senior season, he caught 17 passes for 382 yards and seven touchdowns, including scoring receptions of 78 and 79 yards, and made 44 tackles (34 solo) on defense with 10 tackles for lost yardage, six sacks, a fumble recovery, a forced fumble and two pass breakups.
Also recruited by Harvard, Bucknell, Brown and San Diego, Woods chose to be a Mustang “because it felt like the right school for me. I’m really excited about the new coaching staff, the location and campus are beautiful, the proximity to Los Angeles is perceft and it has the majors I am interested in. Cal Poly really has everything I’m looking for in a school and athletic program.”
Elijah Ponder | DE
School: Bishop Amat High School
As a senior at Bishop Amat High School, Ponder was named most valuable lineman of the Mission League after recording 57 tackles, including 12 sacks, and recovered a fumble and broke up a pass. He also blocked one punt versus Chino Hills, recovered another blocked punt for a touchdown against Chaminade and helped the Lancers to a 9-2 overall mark, first-place finish in the Mission League and a berth in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs.
Postseason honors include first-team All-Mission League, second-team All-Los Angeles County and his team’s most valuable lineman scholar-athlete awards. Ponder made 41 tackles (34 solo) as a junior with 15 tackles for lost yardage, nine sacks, one pass breakup and one forced fumble on his way to second-team All-Mission League honors.
Also recruited by Dixie State, Colorado State and Yale, Ponder chose Cal Poly because “I love the location and I like how I will be able to study what I want. The overall vibe I felt on the trip was great.”
Patrick Roberg | TE
Hometown: Newbury Park
School: Oaks Christian High School
Roberg played defensive end, linebacker, tight end and quarterback as a senior under head coach Charles Collins at Oaks Christian High in Westlake Village.
A senior class vice president, Roberg helped the Lions to a 5-6 overall record, second-place Marmonte League finish and a berth in the CIF Southern Section Division 2 playoffs.
Roberg played football as a sophomore and junior at Westlake High School after attending Oaks Christian as a freshman.
In his junior season, Roberg completed 51 of 116 passes for 996 yards and six touchdowns and rushed for 92 yards, scoring once.
Three times he has been named his team’s scholar-athlete. Robert was recruited by Cal Poly, Louisville, Northern Arizona, UCLA, Cal, Colorado and Boston College, choosing to be a Mustang “because I have some strong mentors in my life who have spoken so highly of it and I respect what they have to say. It is in my home state only two hours away, by the beach, it’s beautiful and will set me up for life. To top it off, coach Beau Baldwin getting the job played a big role in the decision.”
Isaiah Robinson | ATH
Hometown: Los Angeles
School: St. Bernard High School
Robinson caught 26 passes as a senior and 32 more as a junior under head coach Joe Torres at St. Bernard High School in Playa Del Rey. His 26 receptions as a senior were for 397 yards and 10 touchdowns and he also rushed 10 times for 123 yards and four scores.
On defense, Robinson made 108 tackles, 16 for lost yardage and three sacks while also intercepting two passes, breaking up two others and recovering two fumbles. He produced 624 total return yards (28.6 average on kickoff returns, 28.1 on punt returns), among the top 20 in California.
He landed on the Daily Breeze’s All-Area second team as a linebacker and was chosen to play in the West Torrance Lions Club All-Star Game. Robinson also was a first-team All-Santa Fe League and All-CIF Southern Section Division 13 selection and also was named team MVP.
Robinson returned a kickoff 92 yards for a touchdown versus Torrance and he returned three punts (two versus Verbum Dei) and one interception for scores. Against Bishop Montgomery, he scored touchdowns via receiving, punt return and interception return. The Vikings were 4-6 last fall. Robinson’s numbers as a junior include 32 catches for 640 yards and 15 touchdowns, 132 yards on just nine rushes, two going for scores, and on defense, 100 tackles with two sacks, a trio of interceptions, one pass breakup and a fumble recovery. Honors include first-team All-Santa Fe League, second-team All-CIF-Southern Section Division 13, Santa Fe League defensive player of the year and team MVP.
Also recruited by Wyoming, San Jose State, Nevada, New Mexico State and Colorado State, Robinson chose to be a Mustang because “Cal Poly is a great school and receiving a degree from here is something not many can accomplish. It is a great place for me to succeed on and off the field.”
Hudson Walker | DE
School: Redwood High School
Walker was named Co-Lineman of the Year in the West Yosemite League for the second year in a row after making 64 tackles (49 solo), including 10 sacks, under head coach Kevin Scharton at Redwood High School.
Walker also broke up one pass, forced two fumbles, blocked two punts as well as a field goal attempt and earned a pair of safeties. Walker helped the Rangers to a 10-2 overall record, second-place West Yosemite League finish and a berth in the quarterfinal round of the CIF Central Section Division 2 playoffs.
He was named team MVP and Visalia Times-Delta Defensive Player of the Year, also landing on the Fresno Bee All-Star Team.
As a junior, Walker earned 99 tackles and 10 more sacks and was named his team’s defensive player of the year. Walker also played basketball at Redwood, averaging 5.4 points and 4.5 rebounds a contest as a junior. He received offers from Cal, UCLA and San Diego, choosing Cal Poly because “it was the best fit academically and the team culture and coaches.”
Shabazz Muhammad | WR
School: Highland High School
A wide receiver and defensive back under head coach Michael Gutierrez at Highland High in Bakersfield, Muhammad caught 41 passes for 900 yards and 14 touchdowns on offense and notched 43 tackles (27 solo) with four interceptions, two pass breakups and a fumble recovery on defense during his senior season last fall.
He caught four touchdown passes against North High and returned a kickoff 85 yards for a score versus Arvin, averaging 29.0 yards per kickoff return.
The Scots were 9-2 in 2019, winning the Southeast Yosemite League title and reaching the second round of the CIF Central Section Division 3 playoffs. Muhammad was named Offensive Player of the Year by the Bakersfield Californian and also earned Southeast Yosemite League co-offensive MVP honors. His junior-year statistics include 19 receptions for 463 yards and seven touchdowns and 49 tackles (20 solo) with an interception and a pass breakup.
Jonathan Serdinsky | OL
School: Frontier High School
Under head coach Chris Bandy at Frontier High School in Bakersfield, Serdinsky was a starter on both the offensive and defensive lines and a two-year team captain.
Recruited as an offensive lineman, Serdinsky did not play in any games as a senior due to injury.
As a junior, Serdinsky was the Titans’ lineman of the year. He was the only three-year varsity player in his class at Frontier. Among Serdinsky’s non-football activities, he plays the saxophone, is a member of the math team, serves as a commissioner of athletics and earned the Optimist award for academics.
Also recruited by Stanford, UCLA, San Diego, San Diego State, Johns Hopkins, Harvard and Yale, Serdinsky chose to further his academic and athletic careers at Cal Poly because “it is a great opportunity to play competitive football under a new coaching staff and is a perfect fit both academically and geographically for me.”
Ethan Rodriguez | DE
School: Bishop Amat High School
Rodriguez recorded 41 tackles in both his junior and senior seasons under head coach Steve Hagerty at Bishop Amat. He was named defensive MVP of the Mission League and earned first-team All-CIF Southern Section Division 1 honors after notching 12 tackles for lost yardage, including four sacks, and one safety.
Rodriguez also was named San Gabriel Valley All-Area Defensive Player of the Year.
His 41 tackles as a junior included 24 solo stops, 6.5 sacks, nine tackles for lost yardage, one interception and one pass breakup, earning first-team All-Mission League honors. Rodriguez also plays basketball and volleyball at Bishop Amat.
Rodriguez was recruited by Hawai’i and San Jose State, choosing to further his academic and athletic career at Cal Poly because “on my visit, I got a home type of feeling that just felt right. Coaches, players and surrounding people were all amazing. Great football program and top-tier education.”
Connor Heffler | LB
Hometown: San Diego
School: St. Augustine High School
Heffler made 206 tackles, including 44.5 for lost yardage and 15 sacks, in his last two seasons under head coach Joe Kremer at St. Augustine High in San Diego.
A team captain last fall, Heffler notched 102 tackles (69 solo), 20.5 for lost yardage and 6.5 sacks along with one quarterback hurry. He also recorded one interception, broke up seven other passes, recovered two fumbles and forced two others for the Saints, who were 8-3, finished tied for first in the Western League and reached the semifinal round of the CIF-San Diego Section Open Division playoffs.
Heffler’s postseason honors include first-team All-CIF San Diego Section, first-team All-Western League and first-team San Diego Union-Tribune All-Academic for the second time. He also received KUSI’s Silver Pigskin Admiral Award presented to the most influential football player in San Diego County. Heffler’s numbers as a junior include 104 tackles (67 solo), 24.5 for lost yardage and 8.5 sacks.
Eli Otero | OL
Hometown: El Dorado Hills
School: Oak Ridge High School/American River College
Otero played one season as an offensive lineman at American River College and will have three years to play three seasons at Cal Poly. As a freshman at American River, Otero made 15 tackles, helping the Beavers to a 7-4 record and second-place finish in the NorCal Conference’s National Division NorCal League standings.
He did not play in any games in 2019.
Otero is a 2018 graduate of Oak Ridge High School in El Dorado Hills, where he played on both the offensive and defensive lines under head coach Eric Cavaliere.
Otero was an All-Sierra Foothill League honorable mention as a senior after recording 60 tackles (30 solo), including 3.5 sacks, as a nose tackle. He also earned one quarterback hurry, recovered one fumble and forced another, helping the Trojans finish 11-2 overall with a second-place Sierra Foothill League finish and a berth in the semifinals of the CIF-Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs.
Also recruited by San Jose State, Fresno State, San Diego and Morehead State, Otero chose to be a Mustang “because of the way the coaches recruited me as well as the education that comes with being a football player at Cal Poly.”
Robert Greer | DE/LB
Hometown: San Diego
School: Westview High School
Recruited as a defensive lineman, Greer also was a tight end and linebacker under head coach Kyle Williams at Westview High in San Diego. Greer made 116 tackles (72 solo) as a senior and 119 as a junior, earning first-team All-Palomar League honors both seasons. He also was named the league’s defensive MVP, played in both the Makasi Bowl and Spanos All-Star Game and landed on the San Diego Union-Tribune’s Academic Team.
The No. 1 tackler in the Palomar League in both 2018 and 2019, Greer also contributed 16 sacks, broke up 14 passes, forced 13 fumbles, recovered nine fumbles and blocked a punt in the two seasons combined.
Greer, who plans to major in biomedical engineering, also visited San Diego and Brown and received offers from Air Force, Montana State and UC Davis before choosing Cal Poly because “it is a school that will help me reach my full potential in the classroom and on the field. The prestige of the engineering program and the culture of the school and football program weight my decision. The school is beautiful in a great location and everyone has a great attitude. I am very excited and proud of my decision!”
Zedakiah Centers | WR
School: Servite High School
A wide receiver and free safety under head coach Troy Thomas at Servite High School, Centers caught 40 passes for 995 yards and 14 touchdowns during his senior season. He caught three touchdown passes in three consecutive games versus Bishop Gorman, Cajon and Villa Park en route to first-team All-Trinity League honors.
Jeremy Justice II | DB
Hometown: Apple Valley
School: Apple Valley
Offers of note: n/a
Justice is a long athlete that played both receiver and DB at Apple Valley High. With his size, he projects to be more of a safety at the FCS level. Listed at 6-foot-3.
Big play receiver at Apple Valley, averaging over 20 yards per catch in his career with eight touchdowns. Made 94 total tackles as a prep senior.
Kyle Christensen | OL
Position: OL (G/C)
Hometown: Auburn, CA
Offers of note: Nevada, Oregon State, UC Davis, San Diego
Christensen verbally committed to Cal Poly in October, choosing the Mustangs over FBS schools like Nevada and Oregon State and fellow Big Sky programs like UC Davis.
He's a 6-foot-4, 260-pound offensive lineman from Placer High in Auburn that is better suited at one of the interior spots on the O-line. Christensen appeared the be a perfect fit for the triple-option offense. He's a road grater on the interior where he was utilized in Placer's wing-T offense.
He's a long athlete, though he does use leverage and has plenty of strength for a high school athlete and a good frame that should fill out at Cal Poly.
Christensen went on his official visit to Cal Poly on the weekend of Dec. 14 and signed on Dec. 18.
Kyrie Wilson | WR
Offers of note: Cal Poly
Wilson announced that he landed his offer from Cal Poly on June 28, an offer that came from the Tim Walsh coaching staff.
Wilson announced his commitment to Beau Baldwin's coaching staff on Tuesday.
It's easy to see why Wilson didn't hesitate to commit to Cal Poly.
As a wide receiver, Wilson is a much better fit for Baldwin's modern multiple-set offense than in the previous regime's triple-option scheme.
Wilson is a 6-foot wideout who just wrapped up his prep career at Oxnard Pacifica.
Wilson is a two-star recruit according 247 Sports.
The former Pacifica wideout is coming off a CIF State championship with the Tritons. He caught a touchdown pass and two interceptions in Pacifica's win in the state title game win over Oakland McClymonds.
Michael Briscoe | DB
School: Vacaville High
Offers of note: None.
Another long DB who played reciever in high school. Briscoe intercepted eight passes over the final two years of high school. Had 742 receiving yards as a senior at Vacaville.
Jacob Oliphant | DB
School: Monte Vista High
Offers of note: Air Force, Cal Poly.
Oliphant is one of Cal Poly's highest rated recruits of the 2020 class, though was a bit undervalued due to being undersized. Oliphant signed as a DB but is an athlete that can play multiple positions.
Oliphant ran a 4.38 laser-timed 40-yard dash in a camp. He had 570 receiving yards last season and will likely be employed as a punt and kick returner at Cal Poly. Had two interceptions over the final two seasons at Monte Vista.
David Meyer | LB
Hometown: Mission Viejo
School: Mission Viejo
Offers of note: None
The Mustangs add another three-star recruit to the defense. Meyer played some of the stiffest competition in the state and nation as a linebacker at Mission Viejo. Meyer was perhaps the top defender on the Diablos, leading the team with 103 total tackles, 62 of which were solo. He also had 17 TFLs and six sacks.
Don't be surprised if Meyer leads the Cal Poly defense in a year or two.
Julian Reed | DB
School: Grant High/American River JC
Offers of note: None.
Reed used up his freshman year of eligibility at American River College and made 11 tackles while intercepting two passes there. He should have three years of eligibility with the Mustangs.
Reed has average size but plus athleticism. He spent three years on the varsity level at Grant High in Sacramento, intercepting seven passes during that time.
Trevor Owens | DB
School: Pleasant Valley High/Butte College
Offers of note: None.
Owens spent two seasons at Butte College and was a solid contributor on the Roadrunner defense. Last season he made 28 tackles and picked off a pair of passes.
Cal Poly went heavy on defense in this recruiting class and Owens should be another experienced contributor to the secondary in 2020.
Jamarri Jackson | DB
School: Northern Arizona/College of San Mateo/Christian Brothers
Ratings: ** (In high school)
Offers of note: Cal Poly
Spent one season at Northern Arizona and one year at the College of San Mateo. Another NorCal DB commit.
Was a stud at San Mateo where he registered 44 tackles and six picks with one touchdown return in 12 games played in his only year with the program. He was named a First Team All-American.
Had 11 tackles and three pass break-ups at NAU in 2018. Should be eligible immediately after not playing in 2019.
John Smolenski | DL
School: Serrano High
Offers of note: N/A.
Smolenski has loads of potential and tools. He's a 6-foot-5 defensive lineman from Serrano High. Played on the edge mostly as a prepster, but does need to fill out and add some strength to compete at the Big Sky level.
It may take some time for Smolenski to break into the defensive line rotation for Cal Poly, but, again, the potential is there. Smolenski may redshirt, play special teams and then try to make an impact as an upperclassman.
Austin Anderson | OL
Hometown: San Ramon
School: Cal High
Offers of note: Cal Poly, San Diego
Anderson is an athletic lineman that can play a number of positions and appears adept at run blocking, pulling as a guard and playing some tackle. He's a strong kid that can already bench over 300 pounds and squat 400.
Anderson is another lineman from up north, coming to Cal Poly from San Ramon Cal High
Be the first to know
Get local news delivered to your inbox!