Was at UCI ASD yesterday - completely wowed by UCI - and yes, better than an alum network, you have firms/judges/a whole unserved community that has invested a decade in building up this school and now are dying to help make the students successful and get the students coming from this incredible curriculum (mentors as 1L, pro bono work as 1L, lawyering skills class as 1L, entrepreneur types/starting reviews, etc) Especially ITE, I think alum networks are only worth so much.
But we are talking about Berkeley. I think it is unfortunate that Berkeley led the charge to jack up UC tuition even before the bad econ - just so they can game the rankings. They are the reason tuition has gone for 20K instate to 45K instate in a handful of years. Otherwise you'd be looking at UCI probably free and Berekely at 20ish K.
In any case, depends on who you are and what you want. UCI will be more regional, though from the connections of the politicians/judges/big law partners that I personally met yesterday, I think you'd have a personal hand getting you in any major city.
Berkeley, it's a known top notch quantity. You'll have good national ops. Only thing I'd say is if you have a few bad classes and are lower in the class ITE, you might get left out of both ops (review, etc) and jobs. UCI you will have all the ops you desire, and being in the frist few classes likely not have employment issues no matter where you are in the class.
The main point is do you want to go to a school that will guide you to success, or do you want to guide a school to success - I'm stoked about being able to start things - found reviews, clubs, etc, shape the philosophy, and the students I met yesterday were all the same type and the coolest people I've met at any school, passionate, fired up, and so are the profs, etc. If you'd be ok living in OC, or even LA I"d bet, and are the type that wants to forge or maybe has some life goals you want to achieve other than just getting a laywer job, UCI is the rarest of ops. Even at Harvard, you won't get to shape things/forge ground like this.
But if you don't want OC for sure, and would rather just get a top qual ed/pedigree so you get a solid job, go north...