BERKELEY -- Two weeks of training camp down and two to go before Cal's Aug. 30 football opener at Northwestern, and coach Sonny Dykes was in a good mood after Saturday's closed scrimmage.
"I feel good walking off the field," he said. "I think we're at a good spot."
The Bears ran 60 to 70 plays in front of referees and kept mistakes to a minimum, Dykes said.
"I was encouraged by what I saw," he said. "Just the speed of play -- we moved around fast. I thought we tackled well."
By midweek, the Bears will begin preparation for Northwestern, which beat them 44-30 in Berkeley last year.
"We've snuck some Northwestern stuff in without telling our players," Dykes said.
The players get Sunday off after 15 consecutive days of training camp, but they can't help but be excited about what's around the corner.
"We're trying to beat Northwestern right now," quarterback Jared Goff said. "We have nothing in our heads besides that."
Redshirt freshman Darius Allensworth had a great week of practice, said Dykes, who called sophomore Cedric Dozier possibly "the most improved player" on the roster. "He's playing with some confidence," Dykes added.
"I would say so. His play has been really consistent," Dykes said. "He doesn't get rattled at all. In a seven-on-seven setting he looks OK. Then you get him in a team setting and he gets the team first downs."
"It's a learning curve," defensive coordinator Art Kaufman said of Wainwright, who didn't arrive on campus until days before the start of camp because he had junior college course work to complete. "We've got a lot of our stuff in, and it's probably overload for him."
"Sometimes I have to sit back and take a deep breath and just settle down," Wainwright acknowledged.
Wainwright impressed Kaufman on a campus visit to Visalia during the spring by soaring more than 10 feet in the standing broad jump -- without warming up and while wearing Vans tennis shoes.
"A guy that can jump is an athlete," Kaufman said. "He's got speed and explosiveness. When you turn the film on, you know he's going hard and he brings some things to the table."
The coaches are convinced Wainwright will be a factor this season, on special teams and in specific defensive situations.
Wainwright is eager to accelerate the timetable.
"The thing about me is I have a motor," he said. "Once I get rolling, I'll catch up. Once I catch up, it's over."
For more on Cal sports, see the Bear Talk blog at ibabuzz.com/beartalk.
Cal at Northwestern, 12:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2