Bears Add 4 Players to Football Roster
July 29, 2002
BERKELEY - Bolstering their 2002 football roster with three junior college transfers and a former member of the Atlanta Braves organization, the California Golden Bears have added wide receivers Junior Brignac and Joe Crenshaw, linebacker Ryan Estes and fullback Steve Torgersen to this year's squad, Cal head football coach Jeff Tedford announced today.
Brignac, who signed a national football letter-of-intent with the University of Washington in 1996 but never attended the school, was the Braves' third-round selection in the 1996 June free agent draft. He played outfield in Atlanta's minor league system for the past six years and was once a member of the Braves' 40-man roster before being released last September. The 6-4, 200-pound receiver was signed by the Anaheim Angels soon after his release, but a dislocated finger in this year's spring training sidelined him for the entire 2002 baseball season.
Playing quarterback, wide receiver and safety at Grover Cleveland High School in Reseda, Calif., Brignac was named a prep All-American by BlueChip magazine and an all-city selection by the Los Angeles Times his senior year. He caught 35 passes for 650 yards and 13 touchdowns as a junior, but played most of his senior season at quarterback. During his high school days, Brignac was clocked in 4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash and had posted a 33-inch vertical leap.
As primarily a shortstop in high school, Brignac also was named an All-American in baseball, and was tabbed the No. 2 athlete in the 1996 Major League draft by Baseball America.
Crenshaw represents another intriguing addition at wideout. An explosive player with game-breaking speed, he reeled off 550 yards and six touchdowns on 24 catches at El Camino College last fall. The Inglewood, Calif., native ran track and played football at Gardena High School, but was plagued by injuries.
Estes, a first team all-conference choice at Modesto Junior College last season, could provide the Bears with a valuable pass-rushing specialist at the linebacker spot. In 2001, he stockpiled 58 tackles, including 13 sacks. Arriving on the Cal campus as a sophomore transfer, he previously starred at Thomas Downey High School in Modesto. Estes garnered first all-conference his junior year, and he earned a trip to the track and field sectionals his sophomore and junior seasons in three events.
Torgersen, a 6-4, 240-pound junior, transferred from Foothill JC, where he scored 10 touchdowns last season. As a high school star at Palo Alto High, he was twice named to the all-league team.
Other Bear News - ESPN2 has announced that Cal's first road game of the season at Michigan State Sept. 14 will be televised live nationally at 9 a.m. PDT ... cornerback Atari Callen, who started six games last year as a sophomore, has been ruled academically ineligible for the 2002 season. He collected 41 tackles and broke up eight passes last season.