These are our annual Pac-12 triplet rankings. We’ve selected a trio of skill players from each team in the conference.
The rules: Each player comes from a different position group, so the offensive version of this series features a quarterback, a running back and a wide receiver. Each program’s troika is ranked against the others in the Pac-12, and we’ll be unveiling and writing about each in reverse order. Remember that this is not an all-inclusive offensive ranking, but rather one of just each team's triplets.
Note: For teams that haven't selected a starting quarterback, we've kept things open-ended regarding who's competing for the job.
Next up on the offensive end: No. 10 California
QB Chase Forrest/Ross Bowers/Max Gilliam/Chase Garbers: The Golden Bears' battle at this position is, by all indications, still wide open. Forrest and Bowers were the front-runners at this point last year, but then graduate transfer Davis Webb arrived and took the job instead. Barring another unforeseen occurrence, Cal will have to break in a new quarterback alongside a new coaching staff in 2017.
RB Vic Enwere: Leading rusher Khalfani Muhammad is gone, so more carries are up for grabs. The most physically enticing prospect is the 240-pound Enwere, who saw action in only six games because of injury issues last year. Tre Watson will split time with Enwere, and incoming freshman Biaggio Ali-Walsh -- the grandson of "The Greatest" -- is a speedster who shouldn't be discounted, but expect the big boy to lead the way.
WR Demetris Robertson: This former five-star recruit was excellent as a true freshman, catching 50 passes for 767 yards and seven touchdowns. Two caveats, though: Robertson was catching passes from Webb, who made a habit of delivering dimes downfield, and leading Cal receiver Chad Hansen was drawing the attention of opponents' best cornerbacks. Webb and Hansen are now gone, so Robertson must prove he can deliver as the featured man with a new quarterback. The presence of Melquise Stovall alleviates some pressure here.
Verdict: Replacing a solid veteran quarterback is always cause for concern. Cal can be optimistic about the process behind new offensive coordinator Beau Baldwin, who built a juggernaut as the head coach at Eastern Washington. But there's uncertainty regardless, especially since the Bears' two most valuable pieces on offense are gone. That said, Robertson has the potential to be a generational talent. If the Bears can harness that behind solid quarterback play, this trio can rank much higher when we revisit things next year.