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Football: Trying to weather a stormy season

By Jeff Faraudo
Sunday, October 21st, 2012 at 9:00 pm in Football.

Coach Jeff Tedford met with five reporters Sunday afternoon, as he always does. He was not a happy coach, but hardly resigned to more of what we all watched Saturday when the Bears lost 21-3 to Stanford in the 115th Big Game.

“We lost a tough game,” he said. “The only way we persevere through it is by preparation and the motivation to get better individually and collectively.”

Asked if he was unprepared to have his running game so totally shut down after two productive games, Tedford said, “I was surprised that we couldn’t run the ball better. We got beat. We got beat. They outplayed us. I don’t think we ever made a gain over 4 yards.”

Not the running backs, anyway.

So this was a case of one team being physically superior to the other?

 ”From time to time, yeah,” he acknowledged.

Still, Tedford expressed confidence that the Bears (3-5, 2-3 Pac-12) will rebound from the loss when it takes the field Saturday at Utah (2-5, 0-4).

“I would be naive to say we didn’t talk about it. I wanted to make sure I’m not acting like my head is buried in the sand. We need to talk about it,” he said.  ”The team was very attentive in the meeting. A lot of head nodding, a lot of focus and eyes.

“We’ve been through a lot this year and team has done a good job of maintaining their focus and work ethic and togetherness. I wouldn’t expect any differently this week.”

I asked Tedford how he deals with the criticism, especially on Twitter and social media, where the remarks of fans and detractors can be directed at him personally.

For now, he chooses to stay away from all that, except as it pertains to recruiting.

“Besides that, I’m not really interested,” he said. “I’m sure there’s critics. I’m absolutely positive there’s critics. That doesn’t motivate me, it doesn’t do anything for me at all.

“Not that I don’t care because I do. I care a lot, and maybe too much. Those type of things, I don’t want to spend time thinking about. I don’t care who you are, I don’t care how mentally tough you think you are, if you read things like that, you’re going to spend a couple minutes thinking about it. And I don’t want to do that.

“I don’t want the distraction. I want to focus on our team, and that’s to prepare the team and motivate the team and the staff. I can’t control those other things, so I’m not going to get caught up in them.”

 

 

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  • MoreNCsarecoming

    Jeff Teevans needs to meet with Pastor Rick. He is one messed up coach.

  • Juancho

    Took my baseball kids out to cals alumni game today. Read the comments on the gameday thread.

    Made me realize i owe too much to my friends here to leave. Not just my amigos i usually agree with. But my fellow cal folks who i respectfully disagree with.

    Thanks to my friends especially dan, wehofx, daredev, bearclaw.

    Jeff put this in your paper. Juancho rises anew like a fresh pair of breast implants. Amen.

  • Will

    Glad you’re back, Juancho. Don’t take anything personally, it’s the internet.

    There’s only one person that no one wants on here (and who probably should take insults personally, since they are intended as such), but we all know that it won’t go away like a jock itch after running a marathon.

  • Juancho

    I agree with you will fair steward of knowledge and passion. But when boalt brought my coaching in as a negative it was personal. But he dissipated like a tender rain once cal got creamed.

  • Beastmode

    Juancho, I’m glad you are back. Hope you don’t feel that my post earlier this week (being disturbed by fans that root against the team or disparage) was directed at you. It was a general frustration on my part, not directed at any person, but rather a behavior.

    In a month, the program will have a clean slate, and we will all be optimistic and united. Well, we are pretty much all united at this point in who should not be the coach in 2013.

    Again, welcome back!

  • Dan

    Anybody catch the overtime of the Aztecs win over Nevada? Epic decision by SDSU HC Rocky Long.

    Nevada loses OT toss, gets the ball first, scores easily, kicks PAT, up by 7. Aztecs come back with a TD, Long calls timeout to consider the XP. Tons of reasons to choose going for 2 if you had been watching the game, they do go for 2, great creative pass play, it’s caught, 2 points Aztecs win. By the way, whether it worked or not, again if you watched the game, it was ABSOLUTELY the right decision.

    After the excitement subsided a bit from such an incredible finish, I think of Cal and Tedford. I think NEVER would Tedford make that decision. 100 times out 100 times he would kick for the tie. That to me says it all.

    I heard Long interviewed after the game. He said common logic would be to kick the PAT, but he wanted to think it over. Thought about the situation, on the road, his exhausted defense, game at altitude… The OC, Andy Ludwig by the way said he had a play, the players all wanted to go all in, so he decided let’s give our best shot to win it right now. It was awesome.

    I’m not saying Long is a great coach based on this one situation, in fact I’m not sure he will be able to take the Aztecs where they want to be, but I respect the heck out his decision there. Tedford hasn’t made a ballsy, aggressive decision that shows confidence in his team in 6-7 years. He plays not to lose – ALWAYS – instead of playing to win. Huge props to Rocky Long for playing to win. And guess what? They won! And it was AWESOME!!

  • Easy Ed

    Dan I remember when Cal had a young coach who would make a call like the Aztecs did Saturday night.

  • daredevilfan

    Juancho, great decision, step away, gain pespective, come back like the Phoenix.

    Beast, great point. We just need to persevere, then keep hope for 2013.

    Dan, you couldn’t be more right. We need a spark of energy like a new coach of that sort would bring. We are stagnant and smelly right now.

    BTW, Wilcox stock is dropping fast.

  • Eric

    @Juancho – never let the Kool Aid Drinkers get you down. At this stage, that is all they have left – ad hominem attacks to defend their Emperor, who even before their eyes has been exposed to wear no clothes.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    Here is an interesting tidbit about Saturday’s game posted by someone on CGB blog.

    “Did you see that?

    I was right down on the boards in front of the student section as the third quarter started. After our first possession Tedford looked annoyed and was trying to get info from Coach M, sort of getting in his face and Coach M, and I quote, shouted “Get the fuck away from me!”

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    #2 Juancho

    I never doubted you would return. Is that the way you get your point across. “Please be nice to me or else I will leave for good”.

    You must have majored in Hebrew, the only language in which “leave for good” means “until people plead for me to return.”

  • 707 Bear

    Holmoe was fired 11 years ago; before the full-blown social media of today.

    Watching this train wreck is–if nothing else–very interesting.

    I guess we Bear fans must wait for the one percenters to decide what to do about JT’s contract.

    Go Bears!

  • BlueNGold

    how would moron know anything about people pleading for it to return? moron threatens to leave this blog about once every 6 months or so, then never follows through on the threat. Is that because so many people pleaded with you not to leave? HAHAHAHAHA!! Fat chance of THAT happening, parasite.

    No, tne reason is that moron never intended to leave in the first place. Moron can’t leave because this is the only life it has and it can’t stand the thought of having to return to reality and a normal existence.

  • rollonubears

    I like going for two on the road to try for the W in OT, but I’d prefer you do it like Oregon, where you’ve already got the play in the back pocket, and you just set up and do it without the timeout, totally catching the defense off guard. Or better yet, a fake XP! Tedford left his cojones somewhere on the old memorial stadium turf, sometime in 2003. I will be up late watching the Utah game. I really hope if we drop our next 2, JT tenders his resignation so we can begin our search early and not totally destroy what little we have coming in the form of a 2013 recruiting class.

  • Juancho

    Beast you werent one of the culprits.

    You know. I get a feeling theyll give the job to gould. Less expensive and you keep some recruiting continuity. Then possibly clancy and some of the d coaches stick around.

    The issues with this team have been mostly on offense and special teams. The biggest issue is the refusal to sit the quarterback when hes terrible.

  • rollonubears

    Gould might be great as a HC. He’d continue to solidify our running back pull, plus, he’d probably emphasize the o-line more, to protect those guys. Our defense is in the upper half of the league right now. They’ve been generally solid all year. We wouldn’t need more than a serviceable qb if we had a serviceable oline. Unfortunately, we have neither. At least, not on the field.

  • daredevilfan

    I was very critical of the Oline this weekend, moreso than the coaching, but after reflection, I need to take that back. It was all coaching. When you’ve got a defense like Furd’s, that comes out at the beginning of the game and basically says, “I’m gonna control the line of scrimmage and go after the QB who has been being sacked all year”, what do you do? Run up the middle? Throw little passes down the sideline? Try to drop back for a deep ball? Our braintrust was trying those ideas. Like usual, they didn’t see this coming, and couldn’t react once it came. Where were the quick hits over the middle, slant routes, screen passes, QB rollout? The Oline was set up for defeat because the coaches ignored the move the other team made and stuck to their gameplan even though it played into the other team’s hand. What a bummer for the fans who were there…

  • rollonubears

    I think the Bear brain trust might have been thinking “Ok, we tried the short pass thing agains UCLA and it worked phenomenally well, so Stanfurd will be expecting it. Let’s totally catch them off guard by going to what we’ve done in every game before UCLA, and run up the gut into their massive D-line. They’ll never know what hit em.” Then at halftime…”Ok, they’re expecting us to make adjustments and switch to a short passing game. We’ll show them! Let’s go out there and do EXACTLY what we did in the first half. We’ll totally throw them for a loop. No question.”

  • Oldcalfan

    Start of game: Cal recovers a fumble on Stanford’s first possession. Momentum Cal. Sofele stopped for no gain on first down. Why not playfake and throw downfield? Next play stanford penalized 15 yards. Momentum Cal. ist down: pass to Wr for loss of 5 yards. Where’s the draw or screen or deep pass? Momentum Stanford. 2 crucial Cal fumbles: game over.

  • daredevilfan

    Rollon…awesome analysis. So funny, but the scary thing is, I think what you write in jest might be exactly true for this group. Such a stark contrast to some of innovation out there for other teams.

    OCF…You are right, the table was set for a quick start…but we shat in our bed like usual and wasted it.

    Sad that its ultimately a good thing because we need it to be very obvious what a bad group of coaches this is, and boy are they making it obvious.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    Jon Wilner just gave your team a D- for its performance last Saturday. I think all of you should get over to his blog and thank him.

    How it was a D- and not a straight F is about as close to being accurate as BlueNGold making correct predictions.

    Here:
    http://blogs.mercurynews.com/collegesports/2012/10/22/cal-football-grading-the-week-37/

  • Nor-Cal Scott

    It’s taken me this long to even think about reading some of the blogs after that horrible game on Saturday. IDK what is worse, the teams play physically, or the coaching. I know it all goes hand in hand, but if something doesnt work then you make adjustments and alter your game plan. I did NOT see that vs Furd at all.

    This was the biggest loss of the season so far. At least we have been every other game going into the 4th Qtr.

    Where were the quick drops by Maynard? Where was Bigelow. He is by far the fastest RB so get him in space and let him use his speed. I think he had 8 touches?

    As for Coach Tedford, I had been his biggest supporter in the past but this season has really made me change my opinion. I think it is far too late for him to save his job. Cal’s tailspin started when he delegated things off to others. He used to install the game plan, coach the QBs, and call plays. What happened?

    I agree with others, Cal needs a new coach who can bring a new energy and attitude to Strawberry Canyon. Yes, I’d prefer a younger guy, but one who has had success, hopefully as a HC, or at least a Coordinator.

  • rollonubears

    It’s kind of an exciting time. There’s a very high probability of a new coach within the year now. Usually, when we get clown stomped on the field, I just feel miserable. Now, I know we’re one step closer to a a major change.

  • Juancho

    Rollon. Lets test your theory.

    Amigos how do each of you rate the probability tedford is fired this year or offseason?

    I think theres a 25% chance hes gone. I just dont think theyll fire him yet. I fully expect tedford to be our coach game 1 of next season.

    I wouldnt be surprised if hes using my spiritual leader zach kline as his “give me one more shot” card.

  • Eric

    @Juancho

    As sad as it makes me, I think you are right. Sandy is perhaps the biggest kool aid drinker.

  • jabes

    80%

  • 1brsfan

    @Juancho- at this point 51% chance he’s gone. lose at Utah and vs. UW and i’ll bump that to 90%.

  • rollonubears

    Sticking with JT after yet another losing season is nothing shy of masochism. I suppose there are wealthy people who pay to have folks come over dressed in leather and beat them senseless, so it wouldn’t shock me that there are bear backers willing to put up with this for a few more years.

  • Juancho

    My updated top 3 replacement options:

    1 bobby “hey girl” petrino
    2 chris peterson
    3 ron gould

  • daredevilfan

    I’d say 80% too. Money is everything right now. Guru status buys nothing. Sandy will be under immense pressure. I think they’ll find a way to spin it really well though.

  • ThisisCal

    In my opinion, both Tedford and Barbour should be canned. To answer Juancho’s question, I think Tedford will be our coach next year. I place the probability at 100%. Boy, do I hope I’m wrong.

  • covinared

    my guess is that he’s gone by Dec. 1.

  • Juancho

    Thisiscal i one hundred percent agree.

    I think tedford should be fired. But i dont see i happening. Barbour gave him that ridiculous extension. So her firing him is her weakening her position in the administration. And if she fires him thats step 1 to her losing her job. Which i want.

    At the baseball alumni game yesterday you couldnt pay someone to say something positive about sandy.

    Sandy knows shes not in a strong position. Shell refuse firing tedford bc she knows that brings her end near. I know some people think shes done a good job. I dont. And montgomery will be tedford in a few years. This recruiting class could have helped him.

  • Dan

    ThisisCal @ #31- I hope you are right. They both deserve to be gone. Do I think either will be, I don’t know. If Cal loses the rest of it’s games, then I start to think Cal can’t bring Tedford back at 3-9. At 4-8, maybe he gets another season- though he certainly doesn’t deserve it and it would bury Cal deeper in the muck.

    The bottom line is Cal is never going to be good, consistently good, let alone great under Tedford. That is obvious. So with that being the case, the decision should clear and swift. And if Cal has to eat MIILIONS of dollars of Tedford’s ridiculous contract, the person who put it together and offered that contract to him has to go to. It’s inexcusable and unforgivable.

    Should be very interesting.

  • Dan

    Juancho- for me, Chris Peterson is 1-10. Then Petrino. If they can’t land any targets, then Gould with lower salary, big incentives if earned, reasonable buyout. If he proves himself, he can perform his way into a bigger contract. CP and BP are proven big time coaches.

  • Steve W.

    I think there are two reasons why Chris Peterson isn’t going to leave Boise. They are Dirk Koetter and Dan Hawkins. Those are the two previous and equally successful head coaches at Boise who bombed out in coaching at other big schools in the West. Maybe Peterson understands there is something in the water in Boise that makes him a rock star there and a potential flameout somewhere else.

  • calgrizzlybear

    each tedford loss add 3-4!!!!! losses down the road ill include loss to nevada at home and az st at home and of course now the big game …

    longer he stays deeper the hole to dig out of …
    money is not going to be the only concern

  • Rollonubears

    All this talk about sandy and the contract, yet it’s the donors footing the bill. So they just pony up millions and don’t demand to see the contract terms before they do? I find it hard to believe they, at least the big donors, had no idea about the terms of the deal. They all likely went along with it. Which is why I think they all will pony up to buy him out. 4-8, tedfords gone for sure. I think the Washington game is his last chance to save his job, barring an Oregon/Oregon state miracle.

  • wehofx

    Juancho, Dude, welcome back$$$

    If jt finishes 5-7 I’d say it’s 50%/50% because that means beating utes and u dub, or, utes and a osu/pku ie, top ten team. An iffy proposition at best. But like a like of you said, even with zk, treggs, harper, rodgers and bigs, recruiting for the coming year promises to be dismal.

    If we go 4-8, then sb has no choice but to fire jt – because of the cms tix gun to her head – the day after the season ends. Just like d guerrero(sp) did with slick rick. It gives her a coupla weeks to hire new hc who can then put together a staff and get to recruiting through bowl season like mora did.

    A coupla regulars mentioned how jt started going down hill when he hired dunbar in ’07 to oc, install some parts of the spread and call the plays. In retrospect that seems like the correct analysis/post mortem.

    jt’s greatest successes were when he called the plays out of a pro set like $c, udub and furd now. Pro set was the base and out of it he threw in the unexpected wrinkle that fooled the D and delighted us Old Blues.

    With dunbar and every oc after that the O became kinda pro set, kinda spread, kinda this’n that, kinda sh*t. It was neither fish nor fowl.

    In hindsight, if I were jt’s agent, after 5-7 in’10, I would of told him to junk the “elements of the spread option” and start calling the plays again out of the pro set.

    SteveW, sadly I agree with you. Also Palo Alto, Westwood and Berkeley are all the polar opposite of Boise in terms of life style and, especially, traffic.

  • Easy Ed

    Interesting point Wehofx. If you are accurate then I guess regardless of record JT gets another year with Zach Kline and the promise to go back to a pro style offense. Will it matter though? Any thoughts fellow Golden Bears?

  • daredevilfan

    I think JT has established that he can only accomplish mediocrity, even with a pretty decent amount of NFL level talent. Now that the recruiting is way down (and there must be at least some sense that the Tosh debacle was because JT was not passing down enough cash or accolades), that is only gonna get worse. The only way you turn around a program that is on the downswing is by getting lucky and getting some really top notch guys to come into your program for apparently no reason(we got that with Keenan and McCain and Forbes and didn’t work), or find a way to motivate less than NFL-level guys to play way over their heads (you need a Mike Riley for that), or you make a change at the top and build it up in the media like CAL is ready to take the next step, now that it has state of the art stadium and facilities, to get young, energetic recruiters and coaches who will take the program to the top and keep feeding players into the NFL. I don’t see how Sandy can ultimately do anything but the last option given our fact pattern. But I always assume common sense which is where I go wrong.

  • Juancho

    I know i mentioned this on another thread. But if im zach kline i meet with tedford and my dad behind closed doors. And i need an honest answer on my future and tedfords. If he thinks hes getting fired i need to know. If hes staying i need that assurance that im starting next year.

    I think kline runs the risk of being the biggest collateral damage in this flux. If tedford gets canned and we hire someone who wants to run a spread option like oregon then he doesnt fit.

    And if tedford is playing the kline card with sandy and donors then kline needs to play and not burn another year on the bench.