Football: Monday quick hitters

The Bears returned to practice — albeit their usual brief Monday session today — after two days off, ready to forget about Nevada and wipe the slate clean for the start o f the Pac-10 season Saturday at Arizona. Some quick notes:

  • LB Mike Mohamed will visit the doctor tomorrow and could be cleared to practice Wednesday. He said the reason he didn’t play Friday is because doctors told him he could injure the sprained  left big toe even more, which could cause him to miss an extended period of time. So Mohamed essentially took the trade-off of missing one game to have a better chance of being healthy the rest of the season.
  • Coach Jeff Tedford said wide receiver Keenan Allen was limited Friday because of a sprained ankle. Allen didn’t practice during the week. Tedford said Allen is 100 percent now.
  • After talking about Allen and Mohamed, Tedford proceeded to tell reporters today that he will no longer talk about injuries. “I’m not going to talk about them and let the opponent know who’s playing and who’s not playing. We’re going to keep that under our hats,” he said. Obviously, that will make personnel updates harder now, but I will do my best to at least observe who is practicing and who is not — it will just be more difficult to find out what kind of injury a player has and how serious it is.

Jonathan Okanes

Jonathan Okanes is in his fourth year covering Cal's football team. Previously, he covered Cal's men's basketball team for four years. He can also be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/OkanesonCal.

  • Calduke

    Keenan Allen didn’t practice last week!! ??
    No one noticed?
    Big secret??

  • Dan

    Keenan Allen still managed to be wide open when Riley overthrew him on the deflected int (would have been a td), he was wide open when Riley overthrew him on the corner route near the endzone (would have been a td), and was wide open when Riley overthrew him on 3rd down play near the sideline, thus killing the drive (that one would have been a first down).

    Maybe Riley should sprain his ankle like Allen did.

  • BlueNGold

    I wish Tedford would pay as much attention to the deficiencies in play calling and execution as he seems to pay to strategic maneuvering like not discussing injuries, not opening practices to the media and his embarrassing ‘icing’ calls at the end of the first half Friday night.

  • Juancho

    It will make take me some time to forget the image of those embarassing icing timeouts. Oh boy.

  • thisiscal

    We have an opportunity this week to gauge the intelligence of our coaches. They had a chance to see what worked against us on both sides of the ball and they have plenty of time to make necessary adjustments. That said, if Riley looks shaky in the first half against Arizona and we’re down big, it’s time to bring in Sweeney or (preferably) Mansion for the rest of the way. If Riley continues to play and play poorly, the team will fall apart. We already saw hints dissension from Vereen and Sofele. Let’s fix this now. Go Bears! We can beat the junior college known as UofA.

  • Calduke

    It sure is easy kick someone(players/coaches) when they’re down.

    I’m guilty
    I’m frustrated

  • Scott

    It’s not kicking the coaches when they’re down, it’s grabbing them by the ears when they are down and shaking them! Same tired old play calling! Same tired old predictable offensive game plan. Arizona looked light years quicker off the ball against Iowa than we did. One or two seconds and they had the ball snapped and passed or handed off. One or two seconds Riley is still droping back and staring down his primary receiver while the entire defense is headed there.

    Sorry, but it gets old getting pased by. Mike Stoops at Arizona was a joke until almost making the Rose Bowl last year, and he just might get there this year. That would leave us as the longest drought survivor. With all the talent we have had at Cal it’s a shame that our competitors are moving up to the next levelwith arguably less talent while we have definitely regressed. I don’t see any more “Tedford is God” t-shirts in the stands anymore.

  • House

    Yep you hit the nail on the head, all you guys are smarter than Cal’s coaching staff. What do they know when according to you guys the play choice was obvious! How could they be so narrow minded! Kevin Riley sucks, why can’t the coaches see that?

    That’s exactly what this board sounds like, a bunch of know-it-all football fans who are putting an above .500 team down WAY more often than not. What’s sad is places like here and BI accually hurt the perception of the program, witch then effects recruiting and puts more of a public doubt in Tedford and staff.

    Most of you don’t know much about coaching, and I know all of you are not even close to the level Tedford is, so complain on like I know you will, just know that your giving off the perception that you hate Cal.

  • Bears

    I don’t know how people can spend so much time slamming other people that we root for.
    I’m not happy at all that we lost to NV Friday night, I was there, and it was ugly.
    But, I think we can still have a good season. Tedford and our staff are paid to win. I think they will.
    Understand being pissed about losing, that’s a good thing. But how can a person spend so much time tearing down others and whining about things? Man up people.
    That’s what I expect the team to do too, time for them to get tough and man up on the road!

  • rollonubears

    house, if you check out a few other blogs. you’ll find they’re all pretty much the same. consistent improvement and championships are the only 2 things that shut negative commenters up, and we haven’t seen consistent improvement since 2002. if you just want information, just don’t read the comments. the blog is great by itself. what are you looking for when you read comments? just a bunch of people saying “great game. go team. we’ll get ’em next time?”

  • House o’ cards

    Nothing like a “you’re not that smart” strawman lecture from the author of such memorable verse as “witch then effects”.

    Many fans are justifiably disappointed and frustrated to see the same thing season after season. The ones that post here still care enough to say something about it.

  • House

    Consistent improvment?? Really?? Name one team that’s consistently improved over the past 8 years?? And remember according to your standards even if the have 3 years total without a better record than the previous season then the jobs not getting done, because we all know it takes no time at all to break in a new offense and the bears should have been BCS champs by now.

    Do you even listen to yourself?? How can you guys call yourself fans?? They are an 8-4 team every year but 2, and that’s not getting the job done?? Yea, your a good fan!!

  • Rollonubears

    I’m not saying people expect to improve every year. I’m just saying that when things aren’t going well, fans get upset. It’s just the nature of most fans. We got better, fast, with tedford, but we have not gotten great. That’s frustrating. Even more so when you have great talent. The last few years have been disappointing. We didn’t meet expectations. This year we weren’t expected to do well, but it’s still frustrating. Our record vs top 25 teams under tedford is abysmal, and we always seem to lose as soon as we get ranked. Also frustrating. Anyway, I’m glad there are people who point out the positives here. On rare occasions, I do too, but I come here to see if other people feel the way i do about the bears. I’ve admired a lot of your posts, too. Right now it seems people are just frustrated with being frustrated. Fair enough. I do hope we win at Arizona. I’ll feel much better about things when we do.

  • House

    That! I totally agree with what you are saying! Because it’s reasonable and true, it’s very upsetting when we lose. But Im expressing my dissapointment with how Cal fans act like we have the worst coached team in the FBS when teams would kill for coach T.

    Your last post is more reasonable than any prior by you or these other nay-sayers, that’s all I’m saying.

  • Boaltblue

    I was there at the Nevada game and just as disappointed as any other Cal fan.

    The wind was blowing hard at times. The flags at the endzones were standing on edge for large portions of the game. As an illustration of the strength of the wind, how many times did Georgio kick the ball into the endzone on kickoffs; you won’t see that happen very often again.

    Point is, the wind adversely affected many of Kevin Riley’s passes. He does not deserve all of the harsh crticism shoveled out here. Sure, he made a few mistakes, but he also gave Marvin Jones one of his best receiving games ever. Riley’s first interception off of our receiver’s deflection was a very catchable pass. Our offense scored 31 points and OUTGAINED Nevada in offensive yardage. Would you rather take Washington’s Jake Locker’s 4 passes completed out of 20 attempted?

    We sorely missed Mike Mohamed in the game.

    We can and should recover. The season is not lost, yet. Stop whining and hitting the PANIC button.

  • covinared


  • LR

    Please. I’ve been a big Riley fan all along, but he had a really rough night Friday, and it had nothing to do with a swirling wind. Kap’s throws were lasers, and he was playing under the exact same conditions. Riley’s misses were 100% on him. Not sure if it’s a mental thing or if he has a death grip on the football, but he needs to calm down in the pocket and deliver a catchable ball. It’s that simple.

    As for the yardage totals, well, all I can say is Vereen + garbage time = a big total. Vereen is the heart and soul of this team and absolutely kicked ass getting a ton of his yards after contact. Great moves in the open field, too. But at least 60-70 team yards came on a garbage time drive when UNR’s corners and safeties started playing really soft (Cal’s last scoring drive). I don’t give a crap about that number. What I do give a crap about is a WAC team driving at will against our D for 3 1/2 quarters. Now THAT’S a big deal.

  • Lilbear

    Maybe I’m missing something but when we were down just 14 points toward the end of the 3rd quarter, why did we abandon the running game? Didn’t Vereen run for 2 td’s of more than 50 yards and 3 tds in total earlier? Why was his number barely called if at all? We were beat by a better team and definitely out coached. Hey, give Vereen the ball until they stop him next time and since poor Kevin Riley cannot complete passes under pressure, maybe we should run the option? He actually runs pretty well. Cal should look at Navy’s offense. They pass to surprise – which is what we should do.

  • TrumanHugh

    PEOPLE, please!!

    We lost one game! A nonconference game at that. It’s hardly the end of the world.

    We’ve got 10 more games to play this season, and we’re probably going to lose at least two more, so catch your breath and get over it.

    Nevada was a team unlike any other we’ll face this year, so we won’t have to worry about trying to defend the wretched Pistol or any other tricky multi-option scheme. (Oregon is close and will be far more difficult to get past; UCLA may call it a “Pistol,” but they are no where near the talented, speedy team Nevada was.)

    I am so sick of the constant negativity. Did you all really think we were going to go undefeated this season? Did you all think that Nevada was a cupcake? Yes, we lost and it sucked, but that happens in football, especially Cal football.

    Cal may have a championship season every now and then, but they will never be an Ohio State, Texas or Alabama. The academics at Cal are too aggressive to allow the roster of players necessary to sustain an elite level of play. It just won’t happen. That’s why we gotta appreciate the successes–there are MANY–and endure the frustrations (there are lots of those, too, unfortunately).

    It okay to be upset about a loss, but try to keep it all in perspective. Remember where we were just eight seasons ago and look at how we’ve progressed. Eight winning seasons in a row? 7-1 in Big Games? That’s pretty impressive.

    And, it’s something we’d be hard-pressed to replicate by bringing in a new coach. The thought of that makes me sick. Imagine how we’d all feel if they brought in a Karl Dorrell or Buddy Teevins?! Our chances of that happening would be far greater than finding someone better than Tedford. The grass in rarely greener…

    Let’s just try to pace ourselves. We’ve come back from a bad loss before and we’ll do it agin. It’s going to be a long week while we wait to take the field again and try to erase the bad feelings from last Friday, so how about we try to move away from Nevada and focus on Arizona?

    Let’s keep in mind how hard these kids work–physically, mentally, academically–to get ready week-in and week-out, and imagine that they are a million times more upset than we are for losing a game.

    I doubt many (if any) of the players read these message boards, but if they did, I’d be embarrassed at how appalling we, as Cal fans, react. Not only does such pessimism and negativity do nothing to build up our team, it also reinforces a national image of mediocrity. If we don’t believe in Cal football, how can we hope for national respect?

    Finally, keep this in mind: Cal will lose games they shouldn’t and can look dreadful doing it. But, they’ll also win games in which they have no business keeping up. It’s just the way it goes with Cal football. I’ve come to terms with that and I suggest, if you want to remain a fan of Cal football, that you do, too.

    Go Bears!

  • Steve W

    I found myself today longing for the early Tedford years, and especially the 2004 team that came so close to a shot at the national championship. I was trying to figure out what was different about those 03 and 04 Bear teams, and then it struck me: maybe nothing was different at all. Maybe Tedford was the luckiest coach in the history of Pac 10 when he arrived and found teams like Arizona, Washington, UCLA, Arizona State and Stanford in down cycles not seen in 20 or 30 years.

    I think Tedford has been plodding along with exactly the same style, albeit effective, and has now run smack into a dramatically changed landscape of Pac 10 programs that have elevated their games to something better than he has ever known. The 2010 Stanford team looks better than anything Tedford has ever put on the field, and you could make the same argument for this year’s Arizona and Oregon teams. I think you could send this year’s Cal team back to 2004 and they would have the same won-loss record and maybe even argue they would beat Texas Tech in the Holiday Bowl if healthy.

    Let’s face it, Tedford has never had a great record on the road. The two best road wins in the Tedford era have been fairly recent – the 07 Oregon win and last year’s Big Game at Stanford. Aside from those two wins, you would be hard pressed to find any Tedford coached team that beat a good or great team on the road. Cal is 0-4 at USC, 1-3 at Oregon, 2-2 at Washington, 2-2 at Oregon State and 1-3 at UCLA in the Tedford era. The Bears lost to the only really good Arizona State team in Tempe in 2007.

    That’s my new thesis: We’re looking at the same coach producing pretty much the same quality of teams with the same mindset. It’s just a new and improved Pac 10 skill set that doesn’t favor Cal in the future.

  • Eric

    I guess I get to be one of those negative fans. I am glad to see numerous comments questioning why we abandoned the run game. That is a coaching issue, plain and simple.

    It is the same issue I have had since the 2004 Holiday Bowl. House et al. – were you in San Diego watching J.J. Arrington rip through Texas Tech’s defense the few times he was permitted to run? Or Marshawn against Arizona in 2006 when with 2 minutes to at Arizona’s 25 yard line Tedford ordered Longshore to throw. Or how about Forsett against U$C in 2007, only to see Longshore throw the pick on the wheel route? I thought the lesson had been learned last year versus Arizona and Stanfurd, but I was wrong. Too many times we go away from the run game even though Cal’s run offense is simply superior.

    Why does this happen? I guess it is because when Tedford came up through Fresno State and Oregon and when he got to Cal, he was labeled a QB guru. Well, since 2005, he has not been, and yet insists on trying to prove it.

    But that coaching flaw does not stop with the offense. The defense for the Nevada game was totally ill-prepared. Yes, it runs a gimicky offense that we won’t see (other than Oregon, which will absolutely destroy us, and maybe UCLA if they figure out how to use Prince). But entire first half was not about Nevada beating us even though we were prepared. It was Nevada waltzing through open spaces because defense had no clue. That again is a coaching issue. This isn’t the first time our defense has been totally lacking readiness.

    Yes, under Tedford, Cal’s teams have been good, then great for magical season, and then ok. Since 2005, Cal has been, at best, mediocre. The 2006 season could have been special, but – again that coaching problem in the Tennessee and Arizona games – it turned out not to be. Our 10-3 record was a little deceiving when one considers how we barely beat UW at home (Marshawn’s cart drive). 2007-2009 were NOT great seasons. And I fear this season could be a substantial turn for the worse.

    What I think most fans on this board fear is the Ben Braun issue. When he took over the b-ball program, it was in significant turmoil, and he quickly produced a couple of tremendous seasons. He wss lauded as a savior. And then things petered out. The excuse was always injuries, and the occasional tournaments with first or second round losses were taken to be good enough. But it was obvious that he was past his prime years before he was finally let go. Given fresh blood, we get our first Pac-10 regular season title in a long, long time.

    Cal under Tedford is going in exactly the same direction. The team petered out long ago. But what makes things worse are (a) Tedford is highly paid (b) the talent level has been rated better later in the Tedford era than earlier (thus, the heightened expectations) and (c) Cal is undergoing a substantial stadium upgrade and will be dependent on wealthy patrons to keep it going, which ain’t going to happen.

    Maybe House et al. are perfectly fine with 6-6 and 7-5 seasons, playing in the Nut Bowl or the Kraft Hunger Bowl or whatever. For them, Tedford can do no wrong, irrespective of whether Cal never comes with shouting distance of the Rose Bowl. But why is that good enough? We could easily achieve at least the same thing with a young, innovative coach, who will not cost the university nearly as much and will bring some glimmer of excitement. Wouldn’t it have been great to get Chris Peterson 3 years ago? Or Chip Kelly?

    As for the academic restrictions, if the Furd goes to the Rose Bowl this year – which is substantially more likely to happen than us going – that argument should taken be taken out and shot.

  • Oski D Bear

    Good post Trumanhigh. Go Bears.

  • Dan


    When is the last time Cal won a game under Tedford it has no business winning, as you stated? I can’t remember any in several years. I certainly can remember MANY games he lost that he had no business losing. Now that happens A LOT.

    Also, I see almost all of the criticism here directed to Tedford. Yes, some is towards Riley and a little towards our OLBs, but even those are offset by most being directed, very deservedly, at Tedford and his staff.

    If the players happen to read this, oh well. They are adults, this is the real world, college football is big business, they are getting paid educations to the #1 public university in the nation, get to play in front of huge crowds of passionate fans and millions on tv. I mean, this is life, if they can’t handle it, then they should go to some D3 school where football is more balanced than at a Pac 10 school- even Cal.

    And even with all that said, I, as most do, direct the bulk of our frustrations and criticisms toward the head coach and their staff, as they are HIGHLY paid PROfessionals.

    Also, we lost one game? First of all, we were hammered in that one game by a team of misfit toys, guys that couldn’t play for Cal, on National TV while being ranked in the top 25. Secondly, we were absolutely demolished, embarrassed and humiliated in our 5 losses last year. Do I need to remind you??? Oregon killed us, USC comes back and kills us the next week on our turf. Then Oregon State dominates us at our home. Then for good measure, we get pushed into Lake Union by the mediocre Huskies, and for good measure are slapped all around Qualcomm Stadium by a MWC team in a who cares Bowl Game. So please don’t say this is just one game. This is been building for years. This is just one more instance of Tedford disappointment.

    Listen if we had played great and lost to Nevada looking and playing like Boise State, then fine. But we were killed by 21 points- pathetic.

    Yeah, this is one game- one more game where Tedford is undeserving of a large portion of his $2.8M salary- the SECOND HIGHEST PAID COACH IN THE PAC 10! I would hope and expect that he perform somewhere in the vicinity of how handsomely he is rewarded. He hasn’t come close in years.

    Also, you make excuses for him and Cal football for the entrance requirements and workload at Cal- please. I don’t want to hear excuses. Tedford has had plenty of talent to perform significantly better than he has the past 3-4 years. I would say we should have smarter players, high character players and he should be able to use that to his advantage. The excuses/reasons you give are lame. I don’t see any excuses being used by Jim Harbaugh as he is out-recruiting and elevating his program above where Cal is and probably above where Tedford has taken Cal. And he really has a right to complain, as Stanford has significantly higher entrance requirements than Cal. The UCLA fan base cuts their coaches no slack, despite similar entrance & academic requirements. They want and expect to compete with SC. I don’t ever hear Mike Riley make excuses for his team, as they out-perform and beat Cal most every year. So please spare me the lame premise that we can only expect so much from a Cal football team. Tedford isn’t using those excuses, so you don’t need to for him. They’re baseless.

    Using your excuse-based logic, there would be no Boise State, TCU, and maybe now Nevada- I mean they are all non-BCS teams with 2 and 3 star players that have no business even being on the same field with BCS conference schools. Yet they are, and they kick tail. It’s inspiring to watch them play with no fear and make no excuses. It is not inspiring watching Cal and the way Tedford’s teams usually perform lately.

    This is appalling? If you don’t like it, move on- don’t read it. It is a place for Cal fans to come, read, follow, be informed, communicate, celebrate, and yes, even vent and criticize. Most of the stuff here is well thought out, measured, informed, intelligent. This heavy criticism has been coming for a while now. Tedford has a chance to make us all wrong, but I have seen too much evidence to the contrary to be optimistic anymore. Does the name Ben Braun mean anything to you? It seems Tedford is following that same performance model.

  • House

    I just don’t see how 2 straight 8-4 seasons constitutes people like Eric saying Cal fans are ok with finishing with 6 wins. Pretty sad when your predicting that your team Is going to do worse than the prior 2 years, when we have a 2-1 record….. Unbelievable!


    Yeah Dan….Lets bring back Holmoe, Gilby, Mooch, Kapp, Theder, White, Wilsey, etc, etc. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! What makes you think a different coach could win year in and year out in Berkeley??? Cal football will never be a national power because Cal is located in Berkeley and the Bay Area. The Bay Area is full of intelligent people with various hobbies/passions (mostly $$$) and the perspective to not hang themselves over college football. Herein lies the problem unfortunately. Cal brought about 7,000 fans to Reno. What a joke! Nebraska brought 30,000 to UW. Give me a fan base and a region that lives and dies Cal football and we’ll see a team with some more heart. Unless Cal gets lucky with an Aaron Rodgers type special talent it will always be a 7-9 win team. After watching the bears for about 25 years now, I’ll take it and thank the man who did it.

  • nickle

    Sad to see Okanes’ blog becoming a haven for BI posters. Used to have some good discussion here back in the day but now it’s just filled with a bunch of whiners.

    I’m not going to go into commenting about putting Bruan and Tedford in the same sentence since that’s been discussed before. I’m afraid Tedford’s success might have been the biggest problem he created. He created a monster. Now we have people expecting Pac-10 championships every single year (which is fine). But if we don’t achieve that or lose games which don’t affect the Pac-10 season at all like the Nevada game, we have people coming onto boards like this and whining about every little thing as if they know everything, ripping on the players and coaches like they owe them something (which is not fine).

    In case you guys forgot, can you name who the Pac-10 champions were since Tedford got to Cal? Some of you guys make it sound like the drought for 50+ years is TEDFORD’s fault. Don’t mention how we haven’t been to Rose Bowl since then. That’s not on Tedford. I’d even argue Oregon fans should be the most disappointed over the past few years since they’ve had some pretty talented teams that in some of your guy’s opinions is reason for the program to dissolve itself and quit b/c they’re failures.

    Sad to see this place become a joke.

  • We didn’t lose this game on the offensive side of the ball. We lost it because we didn’t stop the play everyone all week long knew they were going to run–QF fake to running back dive and then QF off tackle running free. We scored enough points to win the game; we did not play good enought defense to win it. This is fixable assuming 1) the coaches can make correct and timely game time adjustments; and 2) the players hear and understand the adjustments required and actually execute them. One or both of those things did not happen, despite the fact that the problem was obvious as of the first Nev drive of the night. By halftime the stake was in the heart. It’s true that Riley’s pick six blew up the team’s confidence at the worst possible time; from there the game was esentialy over. But I want to hear Ted talk straight about why his D couldn’t stop the bread and butter play they knew was coming. Either coaches screwed up, players screwed up or both screwed up. You have to name names and administer consequences; none of this light-fingered song and dance stuff. I know I would make some assignments changes. I been there in a game where you screw up and cost the team and know what it’s like to be pulled off the field. I guarantee you the player who cares and is called out and pulled will listen a bit harder and try to faithfully follow the D scheme, if he gets a chance to redeem himself. Hell, my children know that. But keep him in and he will spit on the ground, pull up his pants and tell himself that hey he’s still the best guy they got, so what the F.

    Let’s see what kind of coaches we have. No player should be held to a lower standard, regardless of who he is or what he has done. Think A Peterson and the Vikings when he went through the fumble period. He stood and watched for a while. We’ve got some guys who should be standing and watching for the first qtr of the next game, based on performance against Nev. They know who they are.

  • BlakeStreetBear

    With a healthy Mike Mohammed playing I think we win, call me stupid and/or crazy. He is maybe the best LB in the pac-10 and our true senior leader. I saw the 3 point line at Circus Circus and thought why not? I figured it was a 50-50. Had I known Mike Mohammed was injured no way would I have made that bet. They had their senior leader shining brightly while ours wasn’t suited up. Bad break.

    And the fact that the name “Braun” is starting to make its way onto this board is disheartening, despite its unfortunate relevance. Braun was essentially a fraud, pardon the harshness. While Tedford is definitely not a fraud, he is out-coached in important games on a regular basis. I will root hard for our Bears on Saturday against az, but all evidence points to a beatdown at the hands of the kitties. I hope I am wrong, but unless we fire on almost all cylinders, something rare for us on the road, we will be slapped around again. I was at Nevada and I thought we had a chance. Should I have known better?

    p.s. Was anyone else angry when at the end of the 3rd qtr, 2nd down, near the 50, down by 14, we just walked off the field when I think there was close to 20 seconds left? We need to show some sense of urgency when behind and that just isn’t that case with Tedford. I guess Tedford just didn’t want to run an essentially “free” play with regards to the clock. Why not?

  • Dan

    “Yeah Dan….Lets bring back Holmoe, Gilby, Mooch, Kapp, Theder, White, Wilsey, etc, etc. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! What makes you think a different coach could win year in and year out in Berkeley???”

    Yeah Vikings, and the way Cal is going Tedford will be on this list soon. And what makes you think a different coach can’t win year in and year out in Berkeley? Also, I notice you didn’t mention Bruce Snyder- how convenient. If Mike Riley can win in podunk Corvallis (with less talent) and if Jim Harbaugh can do what he is doing in the same geography with more difficult entrance requirements, than why can’t Cal. You make WAY too many excuses for the Cal football program and it’s shortcomings.

    Also, no one is complaining about Cal not being a national power, like you state- where are you getting this stuff?? People, MANY, MANY people, are complaining about how badly Cal has played against comparably and lesser talented teams the past few years, how how atrocious Cal is on the road, how Cal has been embarrassed and humiliated continually in it’s biggest games on its biggest stage. Is this or isn’t this true? It is indisputable.

    You are over-reacting and stating ridiculous generalizations, drawing incorrect conclusions and exaggerations in your protestations and accusations of people you say are doing the same thing- priceless.

    If you don’t like it, and you say you don’t, then don’t read it. Why are you here? Your opinions are certainly in the minority. Go back to JOs posts and read all the comments since during the game on Friday. There are scores of people just here that are frustrated, angry and opinionated. Go look is the SF Chron, GoldenBearBlogs, Ted Miller’s post on ESPN… and on. There a literally hundreds upon hundreds of people posting their frustration, anger and outrage over what happened Friday night and what has been happening the past few years under Tedford.

    The good news is this will all play out and we’ll see what happens. I am not one who is satisfied with finishing 7th place in the Pac 10 as projected, after 6th place last year, going to another who cares bowl game (again) when our coach is paid $2.8M and is the 2nd highest paid coach in the conference. But hey, maybe that’s just me…

    Also, Cal gets regularly get’s between 55,000 and 65,000 fans per game. Your post insinuates that people here don’t care that much about Cal football- you would be wrong. We may have more balance and perspective than many other fan bases, but that doesn’t mean if Cal was better that the fan base wouldn’t more rabid. Also, re your comment that there were only 7,000 Cal fans in Reno- that’s because that’s all the seats that were available for Cal fans. The place only seats 29,000. If there were 30,000 Cal fans if Reno,like your Nebraska comparison, there would be no Nevada fans.

  • Dan

    Blake Street-

    I am with you on your game point as the quarter expired.

    Also, the Braun analogy is disheartening, and I think Tedford is better than that, but I am not so sure anymore. To me, I’m not sure Braun was a fraud. I think he was outdated and stubborn. I see the same in Tedford. The only reason we have a new DC is because Gregory left. It wasn’t like Tedford made some drastic, out of the box decision to get Pendergast. In fact, he was the best available option to Tedford, as he was caught way off guard. If Tedford really wanted to show vision, he would have made a play for Justin Wilcox.

    Also, he brought in a yes man buddy of his in Andy Ludwig, who was very unpopular as OC at former stops at Oregon and Utah. Some very strange, Al Davis-like play calling the other night- what’s with all the unsuccessful long bombs on first down the other night? I’m not a fan so far, but the last several OCs seem to be all inter-changable. They all seem to be calling what JT would want called.

  • Fair Weather Fan

    This week we discuss a bad loss because that is what happened last week. Next week we can pump the sunshine if we win. That’s just the way it goes.

    I expect a 3-year starting college QB to improve some each year.

    I expect an aggressive D Coordinator to attack the QB and not the RB in an option offense.

    I expect the offense to stick with the run when it is working and it is windy.

    I guess I expect too much.

    If Cal keeps it close and is competitve versus Az, I’m sure there will be good things to say win or lose.

  • Calduke

    The pistol offense is unique

    The QB takes the ball, hands off to a RB
    The QB fakes a handoff to a RB and runs with the ball
    The QB passes.

    This offense completely baffled Clancy and the Bears D

  • MikeD

    @eric#21 – claps

  • Eric

    MikeD – thanks.

    House, Viking, Nickle – I’ll credit you as passionate Cal fans who want to see the best possible result. But I think what you believe to be the best possible result and fans like myself find satisfying are materially different. You’re right – we had two 8-4 seasons in 2008 and 2009. Yet were they satisfying? Far from it because in each season (other than Stanfurd last year) we (a) got destroyed against comparably talented teams and (b) lost to lesser talented teams. In virtually every case, there was a coaching issue. And you are saying that there has been consistent improvement. Really? Cal is better today than it was in 2004, or even 2006?

    You also haven’t addressed the major question – if 7-5 or even 8-4 is good enough, why not try it with a younger, more innovative coach? Why pay Tedford what he gets? If he goes 7-5 or 8-4 every year, never competing for the Rose Bowl and plays in a mediocre bowl (because 2 of the wins are against weak non-conference opponents)you’re ok with that?

    Again, I think the Braun analogy works. He had the talent – how many Pac-10 players of the year were on Braun’s teams – and he had the excuses because of injuries. Cal would occasionally beat extremely good teams. But it would also fall flat at the worst time, and over the last 4-5 years, it would clear he needed to go. It just took 4-5 years too long.

    It is funny comparing Tedford to older coaches. I saw Gilby was on the list. I didn’t think much of Gilby as a coach (these were the years I was a student) but have you ever thought about how good the 1993 team was? That year we went 9-4, but all of the losses occurred when Dave Barr was injured. When he wasn’t, Cal was great and never gave up (including the 30-point comeback against Oregon, which to this day is still my favorite time rushing the field). Cal was an underdog to Iowa in the Alamo Bowl and absolutely destroyed Iowa. I would gladly take that 1993 team – fiesty and innovative – over every team Tedford has coached other than 2002 (his first year, notwithstanding the record) and 2004.

  • KTC

    Tedford is the best thing that has EVER happened to the Cal program and you guys are all slamming him. What a bunch of cry babies you are!

    He runs his program with honor and coaches his players to be better people as well as football players better at the Nation’s best university.

    He has led Cal to more victories then any other coach.

    The wins will come! Enjoy the season! There will be good years and there will be bad years.

    There are many Cal alum out there who ONLY cared about the Big Game because during their time at Cal they were almost certain of having a losing record. Additionally there are many alum who NEVER saw Cal win a big game while they were attending school.

    One thing you won’t get with Tedford are Reggie Bush like scandals or our lead quarterback stealing things from fraternities.

    Appreciate this guy while we have him and be proud of being a bear. The very fact Cal goes bowling every year under Tedford is a tremendous compliment.

    Root for and support our team! Play calling and schemes come from a team of coaches. Tedford has done a good job shaking things up when he needs to.

    Support your team all!!!!! Is your integrity really that weak?

  • NorCalScott

    Sigh…. OK boys lets all relax.

    Yes, Cal got beat by a NV team with less talented athletes but with better schemes & probably coaching.

    But some of these posts are over the top. Look, alot of you make valid points but this “PROBLEM” is so multi-dimensional that it is beyond solving on this blog.

    Yes, Cal – The #1 Public University in the World, has brutal academic entrance requirements. Yes, Bay Area fans really dont care about NCAA Football like fans in the midwest or south. Yes, yes, yes…

    But stop being so negative. Look to the future and the bright side. With the SAHPC & Memorial Stadium renovations Cal will be in the running for more elite athletes. Kids want new & shiny. Just look at what the Univ of Nike at Eugene has done with their facilities and the direct correlation to the quality of their athletes & the teams performance. Granted, Cal can not afford to pimp out the SAHPC like the TajmaPhil but you get the point.


  • You all should save your breath and wait until next week to complain. its obvious your team and coaching abilities will not be prepared for what arizona is going to do for them on saturday. the student section alone will play enough of a factor… then add the wildcats offense to where the game will be over after the first qtr.

  • Dan

    Eric- hear hear. I agree with both your posts 100%
    Really well written in every way.

    It blows me away when people like you, or me, state their cases in a thoughtful, factual way that there are people here that resort to calling us names like whiners, haters, negative, etc. What gets posted here is some of the most intelligent, civil, classy, level headed comments I have ever seen on any online sports forum.

    These accusers go on to say that Cal can never be a top program, or can’t be one consistently, etc. Why not? I mean really? All the excuses they give are tossed immediately aside and rendered incorrect and ridiculous when you look at Harbaugh at Stanford- NO excuses! Not that Tedford makes any excuses- his apologists here do so by lamely attacking those that dare to call out the confusing things going wrong here.

    We have to hear drivel like if Tedford or the players read these posts, he will leave or recruits won’t come here. Please- it’s much worse at just about every other D1 program. Again, for the most part, class and intelligence reigns here.

    Then we get the comments that if Tedford leaves, then we’ll end up with a bad coach like Holmoe, Gilby, etc. What garbage. What negative, loser-like garbage. Would Chris Peterson, Steve Sarkisian, Jim Harbaugh or Gary Patterson be a step down from Tedford? I kind of doubt it. Perhaps Justin Wilcox is the next great young head coach to be. They are definitely out there. What negativism and what a loser mentality to maintain if Tedford was ever gone or let go that we would certainly have a coach that is worse than him- according to these accusers, one that coach would be WAY worse. Again, what garbage. Do these accusers work in state government jobs? They can’t exist in the real (capitalistic) world.

    In performance related jobs in the real world, where you have to improve every year (CEO, Sales) Tedford would have already been fired or on thin ice about to be. I am NOT suggesting he be fired- yet. I am suggesting he has NOT done well the past 3 years as he has not improved and he has not maintained an acceptable performance given his relative pay.

    Please don’t give me a 7-5 record as a “winning” record and some sort of success because it is Cal and that’s the best Cal can do. Especially when that 7-5 has wins against 2 non-conference cream puffs and WSU and a down ASU and UCLA. How did we do against the upper tier of the Pac 10- which by the way hasn’t been in top form that past 5-6 years? Not very well for having such a highly paid, over-rated coach.

    The Ben Braun comparison is spot on. I first called that 2 seasons ago here and was attacked big time. Now I read tons of people making that comparison. I think its a very fair discussion point and I think there is serious merit in the comparison. It hasn’t played out yet. We’ll see.

    I do think Tedford has been open to some minor and moderate changes, which I applaud, where Braun never would. How bad was Braun’s offense? And he would never bring in a offensive coach or change his crappy system. For this and other reasons, he ran the program in the ground after some good early successes. As you watched his teams year after year, you were frustrated how often they lost close games to lesser teams, were badly out-coached, and were destroyed by top tier programs. Sound familiar?

    But Tedford misses the forest for the trees I think. He has lost his mojo- his aggressiveness, his creativity, his imagination- all of which was fun, was winning, which brought out the best and the real confidence of his players. Gone, all gone.

    All the conference top tier must lick their chops to play Cal now, knowing what Cal will predictably do and knowing that Tedford can’t find and develop a top tier D1 QB to save his life (QB guru? Not any more), knowing that if they can come out and get ahead that Cal will ultimately either give up or make so many mistakes that the game is essentially decided by halftime.

    Look I love the class of Tedford. But it takes a lot more than that. I am tired and frustrated of the under-achieving, the inconsistency, and the fact that Cal no longer beats comparable teams in conference, doesn’t win on the road, and gets killed by the upper crust of the Pac 10- not to mention out-classed and “out-everythinged” by a Nevada team that as I posted earlier, is a a team of misfit toys that Cal/Tedford would never look twice at as a recruits- one with a mediocre defense.

    This Cal program has now taken to being embarassed and humiliated on a too frequent a basis. Is that the mark of a top tier coach?

    Doesn’t a great university with great sports tradition, in the best place to live in the world that will soon have top tier facilities within the conference deserve to aspire to win championships, and then have a chance to actually compete to do so just about every year?

    Something is off/wrong, and has been for several years now. It has happened gradually. It’s hard to reverse something like this. Perhaps if things get so bad for our coach, he’ll be more likely to do anything, including listening to things he hasn’t listened to before. I still think he has the talent, though some may not have developed as well as it should have.

    To the real haters and accusers here, there you go.

  • MikeD

    well done Dan

  • Steve W

    Mike D,

    I agree with you on the Gilby coached 1993 team. At the end of the season, that was arguably the best team that Cal has put on the field over the past 35 years. It was a team that demolished Stanford AT Stanford and destroyed Iowa in the Alamo bowl. They won every game they played when QB Dave Barr started and finished.

    You may also remember they beat UCLA in the season opener. UCLA went on to represent the PAC 10 in the Rose Bowl that year. It’s not hard to imagine an undefeated season if Barr hadn’t got hurt. The Bears were on their way to beating Washington at home for their sixth straight victory when Barr went down on that hard astroturf with a shoulder injury. Four games down to injury, four straight losses. And then Barr comes back and leads Cal to an inspired win over a ranked Arizona team after falling behind 20-0. Ahh, the memories.

    Of course, I think the same thing about the 07 season if Longshore handn’t have got his ankle rolled in the Oregon win. Everything about that potentially magic season changed for the bad after Longshore’s injury.

  • Meep.

    The play-calling wasn’t nearly as bad as everyone’s making it out to be. 31 points isn’t a bad offensive showing, it just doesn’t match up to 52. And honestly, we would’ve had 52 if Riley could hit wide open receivers. So on that note, I think the offensive play-calling was fine.

    As for defensive, I think it’s just the result of an NFL coordinator inexperienced in terms of defending a spread option having to work with a linebacking squad in a 3-4 defense that just didn’t have the athleticism to match the other team’s offense. Hopefully our ridiculous linebacker recruits all pan out and give us an excellent core fore the defense come 2012/2013.

  • Scott

    I agree with Dan. Well said. Look at Stanford, Arizona, Oregon State all improving the past 3-4 years with arguably less talent. Chip Kelly comes in and creates a monster in Eugene. Did you all see the two point conversion from Oregon last year agains us to go up 11-3? Brilliant! Chris Peterson going for the fake punt last yeat on 4th and 9 on his own 29? Steel kahunas! It all starts at the top, and for $2.8 million Tedford should have his team ready to go out and kick the crap out of the Pac-10.

    Having been in sales for 30 years, the worst thing you can labeled is “predictable”. It means death in the business world unless you change and become innovative quickly. Reminds me of the dark Roger Theder years when the entire student body knew we were running “short side sweep”. Tedford has become predictable.

  • CALfansincebirth

    please don’t tell us who is practicing because then everyone will know who is practicing and isn’t that what tedford doesn’t want?

    GO BEARS!!!!!

  • Dan

    Meep- well put, but sad. We are already looking forward to 2011/2012 hoping better something pans out. That says it all about the world of a Cal fan. It’s like being a Cub fan. I suppose we have a Bartman moment somewhere in our futures.

    I am having a very hard time drinking the kool aid anymore. I am going to be skeptical, very skeptical, until I see a HUGE change in many things from Tedford’s teams before I am excited that we can compete.

    Well, my football life continues to be a tough one thanks to the teams I love- Cal has been well documented, the 49ers played just well enough to lose again a game they should have won handily, and my undergrad Alma Mater SDSU, where I played, just ALMOST beat another big time in Missouri- well big time compared to my Aztecs- but choked by giving up a score in the last minute on a fluke defensive breakdown. Another new coach (Brady Hoke) to be hopeful about that almost won in a huge upset- add that to the list of almost wins at Notre Dame, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio State and now Missouri over the past 5-6 years. Then we go on to suck every year. Sigh…

  • ET

    Dan, Steve, Scott.

    You are right on the mark.