Football: Are you ready for some . . . Mack Brown?

The Bears (7-5) and Texas (7-5) will meet Dec. 28 at the Holiday Bowl. Kickoff is  5 p.m. at San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium.

Believe it or not, Cal and Texas have not faced each other since 1970.

Staff writer Jimmy Durkin handled tonight’s Cal football story while I was in San Diego with the basketball team and Joe Stiglich attended the baseball winter meetings. Here’s his story.

Here is the Bears’ news release announcing the matchup.

A link to Cal ticket information.

Click here for the Longhorns’ news release.

All things Holiday Bowl on the game’s official website.

And the complete bowl schedule.

So now the big question:

Would you have rather seen the Bears matched up against someone else — say, Baylor and Heisman finalist RGIII — or are you happy you can vent about and Mack Brown and how he impacted the Bears seven years ago?



Jeff Faraudo

  • Kent

    Playing against a “nationally relevant” program is always better than playing against an “up and coming” program. Beating a Texas will bring more national respect to a Cal program than defeating Baylor…even though Baylor has the likely Heisman winner…Baylor will drop out of the national spoltlight within a year or two…but Texas will remain a top 10 program year in and year out…we can always say that we beat Texas and it will mean something.

    Plus, as I long time Cal fan, I relish the opportunity to defeat Mack Brown…as I still hate Texas and Mack Brown for “steeling” the Rose Bowl from Cal back in ’04.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    My son called me from UT as soon as this was announced. Baylor just beat UT and this is one of the worst UT seasons. I’m on Facebook with 1500 Texas Attorneys and so I always read their posts about UT as 18% of all attorneys in my state went to the University of Texas.

    So far there is no excitement about playing Cal although this is mostly because of a poor season. It may pick up close to bowl time.

    As I mentioned before I spent years attacking Mack Brown after interviewing 2 of the 3 AP writers who had changed their vote and I did have some Texas people who “unfriended me” over it.
    When my son started at UT Honors I slowly put aside my disgust for Mack Brown as 1. It was quite a while ago and the current UT Students were just middle school kids and could care less. 2, Those who remember point to Texas Tech’s thrashing of us as one poster mentioned. 3 Brown has not gotten in any other scandals 4. Who else can one root for in the Big 12. Never A&M, or the Oklahoma Schools. The University of Texas is the best and most progressive school in the state and its Honors Plan 1 and 2 ( College within a college) are renowned.

    In all I am lukewarm on UT and hope we crush them. We do have a home and away with UT in a couple of years.

    UT’s QB at the start of the season was sophomore Gilbert the son of Cal’s Gale (sp) Gilbert who I remember watching vs UCLA. He faltered pretty quickly and was replaced. UT has no steady QB.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    I should edit when I write especially at 5:30 AM – I meant 18% of all attorneys in Texas went to UT.

    Here is the official UT Football site as you can see they pretty much sucked this year with blowout losses. The only redemption was a 2 point win over arch rival Texas A&M who is going to the SEC


  • Rollonubears

    I hope they dont get up for the game. All the better for a nationally tElevised beat down! Go bears. A win here doesnt erase the atrocities, but it still would be nice.

  • covinared

    Congrats to all the award winners. Look out for Lasco next year!

  • eric

    Beating Mack Brown, and getting a tiny bit of revenge for 2004, will win Tedford a lot of respect from the crowd that criticize his coaching.

  • rollonubears

    Agreed. It also gives us a massive amount of momentum heading into 2012. A win there probably gets us a top 25 ranking going into next year, for a showdown at the horseshoe. Things are looking up for this program.

  • covinared

    I don’t think its productive to be consumed with resentment 7 years later about a perceived wrong. Texas had been to the Holiday Bowl three out of the previous four years in 2004. It looks like the right decision was made because we went and got our ass kicked by a lower team than them anyway. Let’s move on and concentrate on enjoying the present, instead of manifesting an inferiority complex with whining. Keep up the positive momentum, win impressively for its own sake, and use it to get some of these top recruits that have Cal on their short lists.

  • ScottyBear

    This will be a great game against Texas. I’d rather have a more likely victory than play a rising Baylor. Bowl games are more like the first game of next season and this will be a good start with Texas looking for a QB and coming off a thrashing. Meanwhile, we are hitting our stride with a great November! Go Bears!

  • Rollonubears

    Covinablue, Mack Brown violated us and made a mockery of the polling system. It will never be forgotten. And if he was willing to do that, you can bet he’s done a lot of other questionable things as head coach there.

  • covinared

    Don’t forget that we wouldn’t have gone to the Rose Bowl anyway under the old system. When decisions are made based on votes, politicking should not be an indicator of bad character.

  • 707 Bear

    Since we’re looking back at 2004:

    I didn’t want to go to the Rose Bowl through the back door (USC was the champ and won the national championship).

    I want Cal to be introduced as the “champions of the Pacific whatever” as the Bears run onto the field in Pasadena.

    Mind you, I still have a few years left to see if that will ever happen.

  • covinared

    Maybe next year…

  • DB

    I think Cal actually matches up fairly well with Texas in this game. If Zach Maynard plays well, I think Cal wins.

    Cal plays the run well and Texas runs but isn’t very good passing. Texas’ defense is pretty good but then so are Marvin Jones, Keenan Allen, Isi Sofele and Cal’s offensive line. It really comes down to Maynard’s play at QB.

  • rollonubears

    and special teams, especially kickoffs

  • rollonubears

    Rose Bowl or not, we deserved an-large BCS bid, and is cost the Pac10 eight million extra dollars that year. I agree, I want to see us in the rose bowl as pac12 champs, but what Mack Brown did in 2004 was inexcusable, and borderline criminal. I myself can be very short-sighted, but this one isn’t going to fade away.

  • rob bear


  • konamike

    The only coach more disingenuous than Mack Brown is Nick Saban. “Revenge” will be a motive for Old Blues like us, not for the players. If Maynard has a good game (no more than one pick;fumble) we’ll win. Considering Mack’s patronizing of the pollsters, maybe there’s some satisfaction in looking @ the progress of the TX & Cal QB’s in ’04: “one read” Vince and Super Bowl winner Rodgers.

  • Gobears49

    Somebody needs to write a newspaper article about exactly what Mack Brown did to campaign for his ’04 team to go to the Rose Bowl. I never got the complete facts on that. Could be used as a battle cry for Cal to thrash the Horns.

  • Lady Bear

    I’m with Rollon – the 2004 Rose Bowl snub still stings and the media lovefest with Stanford makes it even worse. This year, Stanford is not the conference champ (and was, in fact, annihilated by the conference champ), but is ranked in the Top 5 and gets to go to … the Fiesta Bowl ($$$$)!! In 2004, Cal was not the conference champ (after playing a tight game and losing narrowly to the champ), but was ranked in the Top 5 and got to go to…. the Holiday Bowl (!?!) In 2004, we were 10-1 and got stuck in the Holiday Bowl. In 2011, we are 7-5 and get to go the Holiday Bowl. What does that say about the Holiday Bowl…?

    As far as I am concerned, the only exciting thing about going to the mediocre Holiday Bowl (again) is the opportunity to crush Mack Brown and Texas. Who cares if it is a down year for Texas – it is still a big name program that has been in the national championship debate recently. Beating them will raise our profile. People were much more impressed when we beat the likes of Texas A&M and Virginia Tech in bowl games than Air Force.

    Regardless of what JT is saying to the media, I hope he is pumping this revenge thing up to the kids. Perhaps he should invite Aaron Rodgers to give the team a pep talk by video phone about the “classless” Mack Brown! Let’s hope the team delivers and finally brings some closure to this wound. And then next year, the Rose Bowl!! (I can hope, can’t I?)


  • Gobears49

    Lady Bear,

    Considering how lousy to average Cal was playing most of this season, going to the Holiday Bowl is a gift to the Cal program, especially in being able to play a name opponent like Texas, a team true Cal fans have been hoping to play in several years. As a very long time Bear fan, and one who still dreams of going to the Rose Bowl (where I’m going to party for three days before the game in a rented RV), this bowl game is the MOST EXCITING BOWL GAME THAT CAL HAS GONE TO since I started following them. I just hope that the Bears can whip Texas and get some measure of revenge for what Mack Brown did to us back in ’04. I hope Aaron Rodgers will have the time to attend the game.

  • Gobears49

    As a very long time Bear fan, the prospect of playing Texas and getting some revenge against Mack Brown makes this the most exciting bowl game Cal has played in since the 1959 Rose Bowl. Considering how average to lousy Cal was playing most the season, Cal is unbelievably fortunate for Cal to end up playing in a decent bowl against a name opponent and one which true Cal fans have been spoiling to play against since Mack Brown campaigned to get his team into the Rose Blow over Cal in ’04.

  • eric

    Covinared – you use history going back to 2004 (and before) to justify Tedford; others use history to decry him. The 2004 Holiday Bowl is, in many ways, the start of the Tedford coaching quality debate. It is relevant for that reason.

    Had Mack Brown not whored himself, and had the Big-12 coaches not whored themselves, Cal would have gone to the Rose Bowl (back door or not, it is the freakin’ Rose Bowl). Cal deserves a chance, however small, at revenge.

    The entire college football landscape could have changed. 2004, far more than 2005, was critical to Texas’s launch into the college footbal stratosphere through 2009. Perhaps the reason why Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri, and Texas A&M left is because they gave consideration to Mack Brown’s plea in 2004, and Mack Brown never returned the favor but instead used that game as the launchpad that led to the Longhorn network, which is by far the single most important ingredient in the college football realignment.

    Brown should never be forgiven for what he did. It is no worse than Tressel, Carroll, Neuweasel, and Cam Newton’s dad.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    Eric you forget that Cal went to a bowl albeit a lesser one and got beaten badly.

    If you can see both sides of an issue yes we were tricked by lousy football politics practiced by Mack Brown who was classless, however without making excuses and looking just as classes we got slammed vs Texas Tech.

    Its like finding out one of the women making allegations against Herman Cain is lying and solely motivated in killing his campaign. Its wrong but on the other hand its fair that the other women who are making allegations have removed him from the presidential race.

    Had we beaten Texas Tech we would have had a better case.

  • Esquire Joe

    Cal losing the Holiday Bowl to Tech in 2004 is not evidence that they didn’t deserve to be in a BCS game that year. Especially in college bowl games, teams are affected by their emotional state heading into a game. Good teams lose to lesser teams in bowl games all the time because of non-football occurrences (perceived snub, coach fired or taking another job, player suspended, etc.). A loss after something like that doesn’t mean a team shouldn’t have been rewarded for the quality wins they had during the year.

    Mack Brown did what he did because he thought that Texas had been slighted the year before when they had to go to the Holiday Bowl – which they lost to Wazzu. I’m guessing that those AP writers who changed their votes believed that Texas indeed was snubbed the previous year, despite that loss to the Cougars.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    It supports Mack Brown’s vote against Cal. he can simply say “They were overrated” and there’s the proof.

    Of course Brown did it because he was greedy,classless and a win at all costs type coach.

    The two AP writers who changed their votes told me it wasn’t because of the lobbying. I never did really believe them though. They certainly couldn’t articulate a better reason.

  • eric

    SteveNTexas – so was OU not worthy of a BCS bid when it lost to Boise State? Was Alabama unworthy when it lost to Utah? If Virginia Tech does win its BCS bowl this year, does that mean Boise State, Kansas State, TCU, Arkansas (putting aside the 2-teams from conference rule) and Houston shouldn’t complain?

    The fact is that Cal should have gone to the Rose Bowl in 2004 because it barely lost on the road, with Aaaron Rodgers winning game MVP, to the eventual national champion. But because of a hurricane, it had to play a game very late in the season on the road and “only” won by 10 (which would have been 17 but before a highly questionable holding call). As a result, Mack Brown lobbied his fellow Big-12 coaches (one of whom put Cal into the teens). It was shameful. Because of this misconduct, coaching votes are disclosed and the AP pulled out of BCS mess. That is far better evidence than the game results. If Brown had any integrity, he would have publicly apologized. If the Big-12 had any integrity (which it hasn’t had for years) it would have apologized. If the BCS had any integrity (which it doesn’t, as evidenced this year) it would have never allowed that to happen.

    As Esquire Joe points (and I previously pointed out), the year before Mack Brown was screwed out of the BCS, complained, and promptly lost to WSU in the Holiday Bowl (indeed, the Holiday Bowl apparently is a graveyard for favored teams – see Nebraska/UW last year). So he learned his lesson, and whored himself.

  • Kent

    Gotta go with Eric on this argument…the worthiness of a team going to a Bowl game is based on what they did during the regular season…not the performance in the bowl game…

    on a side note…I don’t know if any of you heard Mike Leach talk about the ’04 Holiday Bowl when he was hosting a radio talk show with Jack Arute. But Leach talks about how he knew his team would beat Cal because the Cal players and coaches were too focused on whining about not being in the Rose Bowl and were not mentally prepared to play against his team. Leach, who many find arrogant and just tasteless, is frequently full of bluster…but it was interesting to hear his POV on that game.

    I personally think Leach would have been a better fit at ASU (he has strong ties to Texas for recruiting)…but at least he will bring some added “flavor” to the conference.

  • SteveNTEXAS

    I probably wasn’t clear- I was pointing out this is Mack Brown and Texas Fan’s defense of what they did- I did say that.

    I also pointed out that I thought it was a classless act.

    The difference is I am pretty much over it and today’s UT Student was in middle school at the time.

    Practicing law I see many criminals convicted of serious crimes back in 2005 and they get paroled in 2-3 years and commit more crimes.

    I just want us to win because we are the better school and because my son will tease me if we don’t.