Football: Correction — Jim Michalczik retained as offensive line coach; other assistants are out

UPDATE: Tony Franklin has been hired as offensive coordinator and Rob Likens joins the staff as assistant head coach/wide receivers coach. Both following Sonny Dykes from La Tech. Will have more later.

CORRECTION: New Cal football coach Sonny Dykes will retain Jim Michalczik as offensive line coach, but has fired the other four holdover assistant coaches.

Wide receivers coach Wes Chandler told me earlier today that all five assistants were gone. A Cal spokesperson said that is not correct.

“We’re out,” Chandler told me in a phone interview Tuesday morning.

Chandler said he met with Dykes on Monday, but got no answer about his future. Later in the day, he said Solly Fulp, chief operating officer for Cal athletics, called to say he would not be back.
Cal kept five assistants on the payroll after head coach Jeff Tedford was fired Nov. 20.
In addition to Chandler, 16-year veteran running backs coach Ron Gould, defensive backs coach Ashley Ambrose and passing game coordinator/quarterbacks coach Marcus Arroyo were retained for the transition period.
A Cal spokesman indicated a couple of new assistant coaches could be announced on Tuesday.
“I understand it. He wants to have his own guys,” said Chandler, who said he was only unhappy that he didn’t get a direct answer from Dykes. “He could have said, `Hey, I don’t have a place for you.’ “

Jeff Faraudo

  • BlakeStreetBear

    Tough titty Wes, Ron etc. Had they been more active in preventing Tedford from ruining this program they might still have jobs. EVERYONE is responsible for the program’s collapse, not just the head honcho. Gould will popup somewhere, not so sure about the rest of them.

    Dykes is gonna create a monster in Berkeley, we’ve long had the talent – now we have the brains as well.

    Is it August 31st yet????

  • 1brsfan

    What? Gould is out too?? I think that is a huge mistake with the stable of running backs he has assembled over the last decade!

  • Eric

    While I understand that it is common for new HCs to sweep away remaining assistants, I think not retaining Gould is a big mistake. I’m happy about Sonny’s hiring. Not happy with this decision, and hoping that Chandler is wrong.

  • ScottyBear

    Hate to see Gould go but maybe it’s best to have Sonny start fresh with his own guys. Tedford’s patchwork staff of incumbents and hew hires never seemed to mesh together. Maybe Tedford’s fault, maybe too much internal pecking order protection. If we are going to make a bold new start, then Sonny is doing it the right way – his way with his own guys!

  • A-Dubble

    No Gould means= “We don’t plan to run the ball much anymore so who we choose wont matter.”

    I hope I’m wrong, but this is still a FAIL in my book. Hope Ron gets a head coaching/OC job somewhere else. He deserves it.

  • Matt

    “No Gould means= “We don’t plan to run the ball much anymore so who we choose wont matter.”

    I hope I’m wrong, but this is still a FAIL in my book. Hope Ron gets a head coaching/OC job somewhere else. He deserves it.”
    what??? La Tech ran the ball extremely well this year, they were 18th in the nation with 230 yards per game. Dykes probably just wants to bring his own RB coach from LTU. trust me, we are going to run the ball

  • Boaltblue

    Coach Dykes:

    You cannot do any better than running backs coach Ron Gould. Keeping him is a no brainer.

    Coach Wes Chandler’s stable of receivers also performed well last year.

    You should reconsider keeping both.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Wow. Not exactly the most stand up way to do it, meeting with a guy in the morning and having someone else let him know he’s fired over the phone later that afternoon.

    I thought, like most, RG would be kept on in some capacity. Sandy did the shrewed thing having them remain originally to keep the recruiting from stalling out completely, but I can also understand Dykes wanting to cut ties.

    For all we know (cause we don’t. just hypothesizing), Dykes may see one of his best attribute, that which he feels does trickle down through his coaches to players, is a personality trait or work ethic or whatever that if he doesn’t see in a guy, he doesn’t want on his staff. Metaphorically speaking, RG may still have the smell of Tedford’s malaise on him, and Dykes doesn’t want, and shouldn’t need, to take the time and effort to hose him down.

    I may not like the way it went down (if Chandler’s “meeting” with Dykes was and actual meeting, compared to bumping into him and saying hi), but I can respect wanting your own hand picked staff. I can support a guy that pushes all in. [Cross my fingers hoping he knows what he is doing.]

  • The Wisdom Cow

    LMAO, I just saw a blurb on Miller’s lunch links with Justin Wilcox’s name on the short list for SJSU, which would be a great hire for them, and Justin, given the program is already on the upswing offensively. He could keep much of the O in place and incorporate his D.

    He’d probably take Tosh with him. How awesome would them apples taste, Shaq and Sark?

  • daredevilfan

    Interesting to hear that this whole article is only from Chandler. Maybe he got it wrong. Or wouldn’t it be interesting if RG was fired and then later in the day Sonny called him up and said “I want to offer you a job as my RB Coach”. RG would be like, WTF, then Sonny would say, “I wanted you to be here, not as the incumbent, but as my guy because I want you here”. Talk about getting a guy on your side, that would be brilliant! But alas, I’m sure its really just the usual situation of wanting to get the stench out and start fresh. All we can do is remain hopeful. Plus the cousin/uncle hire would make for good comedy.

  • Easy Ed

    Look, If and I mean IF, Ron Gould played any part in the running back rotation last year? Thanks for the memories, vaya con dios, bye bye. To utilize Bigelow like Cal did last season is unforgiveable.

  • Concordbear

    Coach M is a great offensive line coach. The guy has done it in college and the pros. Glad he will be back and sounds like with Franklin coming in as OC he can focus on his specialty. This is good to hear.
    Appears SD has his offensive staff ready to be announced and ST’s coordinator too.
    I really liked Gould and Chandler but these guys are old school pro style offense. I don’t mind us getting RB and WR coaches that are younger and have been brought up with the offensive philosophy we are going to unleash.
    The D staff sounds like it will come after a DC is hired. Maybe Ambrose could still be back.
    Like how we are revamping the program, we need new blood and new energy. this is all good.
    Go Bears!

  • BlakeStreetBear

    Gould allowed JT to NOT use Bigelow this season. Adios amigo! Thanks for the memories…

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Gould had veto power over Tedford?

  • The Wisdom Cow

    It is interesting that Michalczik stays and RG does not. Both have had great success, and it is arguable the OL issues of the last two seasons are in great part due to M’s two years off in Raidaland, hurting the cycle of player development. There are two redshirts that are supposed to be possible impact guys on the OL soon.

  • discdude

    Count me in the group that would like to have seen Michalczik go, sorry. His group had a horrible year this season…unless those rumors about the o-line tanking were true. Injuries or not, it was a bad year. He had some great lines in the early Tedford years, and maybe it was just a matter of personnel, but that was one spot I thought for sure we’d see a change, especially since the blocking schemes will likely change. I thought Dykes might bring in someone with spread experience (that’s why it’s called the spread, you spread the line out…) Coach M, prove me wrong.

  • Juancho

    Lots of ways we could read into this. One way would be to consider how much is changing at each of the positions in play?

    WR – obviously it’s an entirely different style of play and philosophy. So Chandler going makes sense. Not a fan of Dykes not even calling him to tell him the news. Not a good impression.

    RB – traditionally the spread runs the ball less, even though if you look at Sonny’s stats at La Tech they ran it quite a bit. You have to wonder if the change isn’t the amount of running – but the way the position is coached. I.e., if we’re not running an offense with a pro-set style maybe they thought Gould was too old of a dog to learn new tricks? Or maybe those running stats include a lot of bubble screen yards, QB running yards, WR’s on end arounds, etc.

    O Line – I would say not much change philosophically.

    On the defensive side of the ball – have to imagine that the new D Coordinator will have full say so those moves made sense.

    Here’s one that dissapoints me a bit. Marcus Arroyo. He was the guy who took over a lot of the recruiting when our program was in flux this past year. Young, energetic, connects with recruits, and more importantly his loss (and Gould’s) creates more recruiting disruption.

    But these folks get paid a lot of money to make sure they make the right decisions. So let’s hope it all works out.

    — Sonny Dykes Recruiting —

    So I took a look at Sonny’s 2011 and 2012 recruiting classes at Louisiana Tech.

    Some things to note, heavy on the JC players. Which is not surprising for a mid major. Heavy on the south, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, etc. Not many guys out of California. In 2011 he had 3, and in 2012 he had 4 (2 of which appear to be brothers – same last name).

    Not surprisingly lots of 2-3 star guys. Something that caught me off guard is that in 2011 they signed 3 QBs, and 2 in 2012. Maybe that’s just par for the course for mid majors.

    In 2011 they signed 13 guys on offense, 12 on D. In 2012, they signed 11 guys on offense, 6 on D.

    None of the California guys they got were from any of the perrenial HS powers.

  • RT

    With Gould gone, I guess we can say goodbye to Notre Dame-Sherman Oaks standout Khalfani Muhamma.

    Gould landed the 4-star Muhammad, and the kid said as long as Gould would be retained, he’d be a Bear.

    Exactly the kind of RB that would have worked in the spread.

    With this news, Tosh probably has the kid on speed dial


  • Juancho

    Just looked at their rushing stats. It’s definitely Running Back heavy.

    One back at almost 1,200 yards. Another at 740, and another with about 369.

    Their QB ran the ball 61 times on the season. By contrast Mariota ran it 98 times this year. And wouldn’t you know, Zach Maynard ran it 98 times, for a whopping 38 yards.

    I’m excited to find out who the D Coordinator hire is. I’m also hoping to hear something innovative about our recruiting. I emailed Sandy my idea about looking at recruiting holistically, and looking to coordinate across sports when we outreach the local schools and athletic programs. No response. I guess she’s busy. And she’s in my heart.

  • Juancho

    Jeff the Cat – you planning on interviewing the new coaches ? How about a Bear Talk Blog Q & A ?

  • SteveNTexas

    I’ll admit I just don’t have enough information on each person and their style to make an intelligent comment– I’m results oriented anyway.

    Hey Juancho Has Jeff the Cat written any editorials on this or is he pussyfooting around the issue?

  • wehofx

    Sorry to see RG go but 2 things he bears some (I know jt’s ultimately responsible but…) responsibility for make it easier to see him go: 1) Big’s lack of carries/Not learning the O. 2) RB’s NOT getting benched after a fumble.

    From LaTech site on Pierre Ingram Sd’s RB coach:

    >>>In his first season directing Tech’s tailbacks, Ingram guided Lennon Creer’s 1,181 yard campaign during the 2010 season that included a 252-yard performance against San Jose State – the seventh most in a single game in Tech history. Creer also posted a 149-yard rushing day at No. 2 Boise State, more yards than 12 of Boise’s 13 opponents recorded against the Broncos as a team during 2010.

    Ingram joined the Bulldogs after winning a national championship at Villanova, where he coached the tight ends as an offensive assistant. In addition to working with the tight ends, Ingram was responsible for recruiting in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee.

    “Pierre [Ingram] comes from a winning program and he will bring tremendous energy to our program,” said Dykes. “He loves the game and I’m looking forward to him bringing his energy and passion to the program. He will also be a great recruiting asset for us.”>>>

    I especially like the last sentences of 2nd and 3rd para. He’s also under 30.

    #9 wilcox and the ‘ho to sjsu would be too perfect. Instant karma.

    #17 & #19 Thx VP.

    Go Bears!

  • Eric

    @18 – I’m going to tap into my sources at ND to see what the good word is on Khalfani. Was at the ND awards ceremony last night – co-Serra league MVP. He is second alltime at ND in virtually every rushing record (behind only Justin Fargas from the mid-1990s).

  • Will

    I nominate Juancho to conduct the interviews.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    From Miller –

    Said Franklin in the same statement, “I’ve been recruiting California for a long time and this is where my wife and I wanted to live. It’s funny how dreams sometimes do come true. … This is our last stop, this is where we want to finish. I have no desire to be a head coach. I wanted to be here to make this thing work for Sonny and give the Cal alumni something they can be proud of. As much pride as they have in their academics, we want it to be the same for their football program. That’s our goal.”

    Now THAT, I liked reading.

  • Will

    I truly believe that’s where Dykes’ value comes from – Franklin.

  • Juancho

    Did they announce anything on the rope guy ?

  • Will

    All I know is that I haven’t gotten a call yet, I’m afraid.

  • wehofx

    #27 #28 lol

    twitter rumor I like: Ryan Maquiñana ‏@RMaq28

    A source told me earlier this wk that former #Cal RB coach Ron Gould interviewed for the vacant UCDavis HC gig. He deserves it. #GoBears

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Please tell me you guys will go rip Wilner more than I got it. His recent Cal entry is why I stopped posting there. Wrong on facts. Crazy biased on opinion.


    One thing worth noting that Wilner and others have brought up before is the cost of living argument when it comes to salaries for HCs and Assistants.

    Please, ask yourself WHY it costs more to live in the Bay Area. Ask yourself why it is so much cheaper in the Valley. Then reread the Franklin quote I put up on #25.

    Yes, you won’t be able to buy gold leaf toilet paper working for Cal, while you will be able to wipe your rear with gold in your Bodunk, USA McMansion with the same salary.

    But then you are living in Bodunk!

    Trust me. I live in Bodunk. It sucks. They black out Warrior games here so you have to watch the Kings (or not watch the NBA at all, like me, save the rare TNT game). The water is a polluted river, yet every year people that don’t know how to swim manage to drowned in it (the exception to Darwinsim, I suppose). The local news spins everything to make sure it somehow relates to this area, like “Colin Kaepernick, from our own Turlock” or “[Pick a Name], who once stopped in Rocklin to use the bathroom of Arby’s while he was on his way to Tahoe.” There is not enough money to make it worth living here, especially when you can’t deal with the drive to escape, if only for a day.

    Granted, Berkeley is not for everyone. The Bay Area isn’t even for everyone, but it’s one of the greatest places in the country to live for many. People that get it, people that would still make enough money to live far better than 95% of us, would jump at the chance to not get the same bang for their buck but get to live, and live well, here.

    End of rant. Sorry, I’m an angry bovine of late.

  • Steve W

    Wisdom….loved your post. As a guy who once lived in Yuba City and later happily moved to Walnut Creek, I can tell you that I would rather live in a corrugated tin shack over the BART station in Walnut Creek than the biggest mansion in Yuba City.

  • George Watson

    The Wisdom Cow Says:
    December 11th, 2012 at 8:35 pm
    “Yes, you won’t be able to buy gold leaf toilet paper working for Cal, while you will be able to wipe your rear with gold in your Bodunk, USA McMansion with the same salary.”

    Hey, is “Bodunk” West Sac? If that’s it, it’s better described as “Dunk” or maybe “Dump.” Why do you think I left? They say the best thing to come out of Sacto is I-80.

  • BlueNGold

    Bodunk? Isn’t that the location of moron’s basement?