BERKELEY – Junior quarterback Jared Goff announced at a press conference Thursday on campus that he intends to forego his senior season at Cal and enter the 2016 NFL Draft. The two-time team captain finishes his Cal career with 12,220 passing yards and 96 touchdown passes among 26 school records over 37 games played all starts.
"It's hard with all your players,” Dykes said. “Jared is part of a group of guys who have been here since we got here. Jared was part of our first recruiting class. We got to know him early in the process. He graduated early and got here in the spring. He's been here for as long as I have. It's hard to lose guys like that, especially everything we've gone through as a program and as a team. At the same time, you know things like this are going to happen. It's inevitable. You're excited for all your players and what's next in their lives. Jared will receive more attention, but I'm excited to see what they all do when they're all done with football. I think Jared has a really bright future. I'm looking forward to having the opportunity to watch him."
Goff set 26 school records during his three seasons as the Cal’s starting quarterback from 2013-15 including career marks for passing yards (12,220), touchdown passes (96), total offense (12,086) and completions (977). He was also second on the school’s all-time list for passing efficiency (143.95) behind only Aaron Rodgers. He ranks third all-time in Pac-12 history in passing yards and fourth in passing touchdowns, while he is 26th all-time nationally in passing yards and 27th in passing touchdowns.
Goff also broke a pair of Pac-12 single-season records in his final season as a 2015 junior when he passed for 4,719 yards and 43 touchdowns to lead an 8-5 Cal team to a winning record and bowl game for the first time since 2011. He was also the first Cal quarterback to earn first-team All-Pac-12 honors since Rodgers in 2004, a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award and Cal’s Most Outstanding Player in a Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl victory over Air Force when he set the bowl’s single-game records by passing for 467 yards and six touchdowns in his final collegiate game. The bowl victory was Cal’s first since a 2008 win over Miami (Fla.) in the Emerald Bowl.
Through games of Dec. 29, Goff leads the Pac-12 and ranks third in the nation in 2015 in both passing touchdowns and passing yards in 2015. He is also second in both nationally and in the conference in passing yards per game (363.0) among 10 categories in which he ranks among the top three in the conference and top 20 nationally.
Goff finished his career on an incredible run, combining for 1,462 yards passing and 17 touchdown passes to a single interception for a 206.33 passer efficiency rating during the final three wins (Oregon State, Arizona State, Air Forces) of his career over his last four games. He passed for a school-record 542 yards in the win over Oregon State.
Goff was a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award and was on watch lists for nearly every quarterback and player of the year award in 2015 reaching as high as No. 3 on the USA Today Heisman Hot List and tied for sixth on the ESPN Heisman Watch after a 5-0 start that was the Golden Bears’ best since also winning their first five games in 2007 and one victory away from their best since the 1950 team won its first nine contests, ranking as high as No. 19 in the Amway Coaches Poll and No. 20 in the AP Top 25 in the Week 8 national rankings for its highest national rankings in six seasons.
As a 2014 sophomore, Goff completed 316-of-509 passes (62.1%) for then single-season school records of 3,973 passing yards and 35 touchdowns that were later broken in 2015 to earn honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors for the second consecutive season. He passed for a career-high seven touchdowns in a 59-56 double overtime victory over Colorado and a then single-game school record 527 yards in a 60-59 win at Washington State the following game. His 92-yard touchdown pass to Daniel Lasco against Colorado is the longest in school history.
Goff also earned honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors in his first collegiate season as a 2013 freshman when he set Cal then single-season school records for passing yards (3,508), passes completed (320) and total offense (3,446) before later surpassing all of the single-season marks.
“I am excited for Jared and his family as they move into their next challenge,” Cal offensive coordinator Tony Franklin said. “I include his family because I firmly believe that Jerry and Nancy have played an integral role in molding Jared into one of the best quarterbacks to ever play college football. But more important is how they raised him to being a really good human being with a heart and soul that all parents should strive for their children to possess. It has been a beautiful adventure traveling this journey with Jared and watching him develop from a skinny kid – who was extremely well coached in high school, to a young man with elite leadership skills that blended perfectly with his physical talent.”
"One of the best parts about being AD here at Cal is that I have the opportunity to get to know, work with and interact with a group of incredibly gifted, bright and amazing young people, our student-athletes,” said Director of Athletics Michael Williams. “One of those incredible young people is Jared. Jared, you should know that we're all proud of you, and we want to wish you nothing but the best of what promises to be a great career at the next level. On behalf of Cal Athletics and our university, I want to say thank you for representing us so well these past few years. Thank you for being such a great role model for so many. Thank you for playing such a pivotal role in turning our football program around. And thank you to your parents for raising a young man with tremendous character."
The 2016 NFL Draft will be held April 28-30 at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago. Cal has had 26 first-round picks and 226 selections overall since the draft began in 1936, as well as 53 selections overall and 10 first-round picks in the last 16 drafts that have taken place since 2000. Former Cal quarterback Steve Bartkowski is the only Cal player to ever be selected with the first pick overall in the draft in 1975.