Cal picks up Penn State LB Khairi Fortt

California's defense, already perceived as among the Pac-12's best, just got better, courtesy of Penn State.

Khairi Fortt has announced he's transferring to Cal, where he will be immediately eligible and could be in the mix at inside linebacker in the Bears' 3-4 scheme.

Fortt, a junior from Stamford, Conn., once an ESPN 150 recruit and a U.S. Army All-America selection out of high school, posted 33 tackles, six for loss and 2.5 sacks last year. He was listed as a co-starter on the post-spring depth chart. He has two years of eligibility remaining.

Fortt is the second player to use the "free agency" given to Penn State players by the NCAA in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal to go West. On Tuesday, running back Silas Redd announced he was transferring to USC. That means Fortt and Redd likely will bump heads as adversaries on Sept. 22 when Cal visits the Trojans.

Fortt, who played in a 4-3 scheme at Penn State, won't just waltz into a starting job. Though the Bears lost both starting inside LBs from 2011, including Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year Mychal Kendricks, the position is hardly devoid of talent, with Nick Forbes and Robert Mullins topping the post-spring depth chart. That said, Fortt is almost certain to see significant playing time even if he fails to win a starting job.