Richard Rodgers made three unofficial visits to Cal in recent months and many more trips to Berkeley are expected now that the Shrewsbury (Mass.) St. John's tight end has committed to the Golden Bears.
Rodgers' father, Richard, Sr., was involved in "The Play" and following in his dad's footsteps was one of many reasons why the 6-foot-4, 230-pound four-star prospect pledged to Cal.
Other factors playing into Rodgers' decision were that his mother lives in the Bay Area, he likes the program's future and he hit it off with assistant coach Tosh Lupoi, the Rivals.com recruiter of the year.
"I wanted to follow in my dad's footsteps and wanted to be in a place where I felt comfortable," Rodgers said. "I overall liked the situation Cal has to offer."
Rivals.com rates Rodgers No. 12 at tight end, No. 182 nationally and third in the Massachusetts state rankings behind Boston College commit Brian Miller and Miami pledge Albert Louis-Jean.
Boston College, Maryland, Notre Dame and Oregon were also high on Rodgers' list but Cal won out and Lupoi was a big reason. His relationship with tight ends coach Jeff Genyk also played a significant factor.
"I really like his personality, he's a great guy and he's very down-to-earth," Rodgers said of Lupoi. "He's not going to lie.
"He's not going to tell me something that's not true and say I'm going to play receiver or play safety or something ridiculous when I'm not. I feel he's very truthful and forthright with me."
Cal finished third in the Rivals.com Pac-10 rankings last recruiting cycle behind USC and UCLA as the Golden Bears cherry-picked the country for top talent.
The coaching staff did an outstanding job on the East Coast - especially in North Carolina and Maryland - and now they have developed the relationships needed to land top prospects in those areas for years to come.
Rodgers is a perfect example. He could have stayed local and played in the ACC or gone to Notre Dame but with his father's history, his mother living in the area and his comfort level at Cal, everything was a perfect fit for his commitment.
"I feel like their program is on the rise and a lot of people don't know about their recruiting classes they've had coming in," Rodgers said. "They're going to be a great program in the Pac-10."