Saturday, September 22, 2007

Arizona Daily Star: Success at dank stadium staves off hibernation

By “Mr. Football” Greg Hansen


Dear Mr. Football: How does Cal's Memorial Stadium rank in college football's places or lore?

A: In the 30 years I've traveled the Pac-10 football road, I would rank the league's bottom three this way: 10-Stanford, 9-Cal, 8-Wazzu. Memorial Stadium is chilly, dark and so antiquated you expect to see helmets sans facemasks.

Arizona's 13 appearances in Berkeley have drawn an average of 37,018, but that is probably a generous over-estimate by about 5,000 per game. Cal drew as few as 26,222 against Arizona in 2001 and 28,808 there a year later.

That has all changed. Big winners now, the Bears averaged 64,318 at home last year and now routinely draw capacity crowds (72,516). How else would they be able to pay Jeff Tedford's $1.8 million (including incentives) salary?

Dear Mr. Football: Who gets the credit for hiring Tedford? Was he available when Arizona hired John Mackovic?

A: When Jim Livengood hired Mackovic in December 2000, Tedford was Oregon's offensive coordinator, earning about $125,000 annually. Not that he was an unknown: The Ducks were coming off 10-2 and 9-3 seasons.

If only, right?   Tedford was discovered a year later by Cal's first-year AD, Steve Gladstone, who did not know much about football (he had been Cal's crew coach, of all things), but he did have a good instinct about coaches. Cal's hierarchy was so indebted to Gladstone it essentially demoted him three years later.


Anonymous said...

Stanford has a nice, modern stadium. Would any California fan trade our #6 for it?

The stadium will come...

How about:

1. USC
2. LSU
3. OK
4. WVU
5. Cal
6. Florida

I'm just sayin'...

Florida 30 (4-0)
Mississippi 24 (1-3)

Anonymous said...

I'm all for positive thinking (I'm a Cal Psych grad, too) but I don't think we should read too much into that one game. We've both gone against Tenessee and, well, damn. The hopeful within me gives our Bears credit for breaking the will of Tenessee, which made it easier for them to give up against Florida. But, damn.

The current 1 to 5s have all put togther complete games most weeks. I'm curious to see what we can do if we can pull together some complete games. This week will be one key time to do it.

meymey said...

How dare Mr. Football bad-mouth our beautiful Memorial? What's that you say? Fault line? Horrible death? Nevermind.