Do your duty!We know it may seem like we here at the Clog aren’t really that up on the Cal sports (besides Quidditch now that we have it, obvies) but … OK, that’s basically true. But this should only magnify the gravity of the situation. Apparently, the Cal men’s basketball team is real close to being the Pac-10 conference champion for the first time in 50 years. That’s literally half a century. Literally.

So you can see why coach Mike Montgomery is asking for all the help he can get. We have it on good authority that while playing this so-called “basketball,” having many fans present making copious amounts of noise is can actually help the team whose home court upon which said game is being played emerge victorious. That, Cal fans, is where you come in. read more »


ZOMG! It’s Gerald Nicdao on TV! Nicdao, one of the first Cloggers, appeared on ESPN’s coverage of the Cal vs. Oregon football game last Saturday. Currently, “GerJazz Hands” works as the assistant sports editor for the Daily Cal.

As a Clogger, Nicdao was the longest-running writer as well as the most productive, certainly having written the most posts out of any Clogger to date. Yeah, it’s true–we miss Gerald.

At least we’ll always have Gerald, Jr.

Student Showdown: Cal vs. Oregon [ESPN Video Beta]


We were appalled with ESPN six months ago. Six months ago, ESPN had the moxie to give us bowl predictions for this upcoming season—which begins next Saturday.

Sure, ESPN gave Cal the nod at going to the Rose Bowl this year (after losing to USC, again, no less), but that was six months ago. What did anyone know about the upcoming season?

Almost nothing.

So, we’re a week away from the start of college football, and yes, those predictions are coming out again. We still think they’re too early, but hey, we like to give you our thoughts about them.

We guess that SI.com has become the resident Cal-hater among “respectable” publications (or Web sites). We think they’ve taken Stewart Mandel’s cautionary advice too far and that they must have a UCLA grad on the staff somewhere—even if he or she is just a janitor.

SI.com is predicting that the Bears will travel to El Paso for the Sun Bowl (the hell of college bowl games). USC plays for the national title while the Bruins head two hours (five hours if there’s traffic) south to play in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego.

Does SI.com really think that the Holiday Bowl will pick UCLA over Cal if both teams finish with identical records? Well, we probably would. The Bruins still have a little bit more marketability over the Bears. And as we know, these bowl games are all about the money.

Speaking of having identical records with UCLA, to whom does Cal lose in the conference? And if all three loses for the Bears are in conference, then does that mean Tedford’s boys shut up all those SEC fans and beat Tennessee in seven days?

Over at SportsLine.com (or CBS Sports? We think they changed their name), Dennis Dodd thinks Cal heads to Pasadena for the Rose Bowl.

He also rants about a lot of other things. Like how new Stanfurd coach Jim Harbaugh hired his defensive coordinator—by searching the Internet.

Image Source: Deng-Kai Chen, Daily Cal
Sports Illustrated’s Bowl Projections [SI.com]
Twenty-five things to watch this season [CBS Sports]

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If you haven’t already seen the ESPN the Magazine cover with DeSean Jackson on it, well, we just got to say it’s the best of the three regional covers.

While Arkansas’s Darren McFadden and Brian Brohm of Louisville are just standing there, looking like they’re hot stuff, D-Jax took to the air, flying to catch a football.

Haven’t seen it yet? Click on that video up there, which was taken during the photo shoot for ESPN the Mag. At the very end, you see the Golden Blur’s cover, alongside the other two really boring ones.

It’s really interesting to see that ESPN went away from the whole USC bias and went with D-Jax for the west coast cover. We guess John David Booty(call) wasn’t flashy enough. And maybe that was a good thing, because then we’d have three covers that look exactly the same.

And it’s interesting how D-Jax keeps referencing Tupac’s “All Eyez On Me” album, especially in the video and in SI.com’s most recent feature on the speedy wide-out.

But hey, if Cal beats Tennessee on Sept. 1 and D-Jax has one of those amazing punt returns or makes an amazing grab, then all eyes better be on him (and the Bears).

Cal’s DeSean Jackson Featured on Cover of ESPN The Magazine [Calbears.com]
Star DeSean Jackson is used to being in the spotlight [SI.com]

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No surprise here.

For the fifth consecutive year, the Pac-10 media have picked the boys from Troy to finish atop the conference.

And for the fourth consecutive year, Cal was picked to finish second behind Pete Carroll’s USC team.

There really isn’t too much to read into this. Every year, every conference has these preseason rankings, and every year, they’re pretty much wrong in some sense. But we all like our preseason rankings.

If you’d like to know, UCLA was picked to finish at No. 3, and our good friends at Stanfurd were picked to finish last. Wow, that’s a gutsy call, especially since the Card won only one game last year.

But speaking of rankings, ESPN has been ranking all 119 Division I-A football teams in terms of their performance in the last decade.

The Bears land in at No. 35, which is a pretty fair assessment.

You have to remember that Cal was pretty much the doormat of the Pac-10 for most of the late 1990s. Also note that the Bears had won only one game in 2001, the year before Jeff Tedford became Cal’s head coach.

Also note that of the 55 games won in the last 10 years, 43 have come under Tedford.

We don’t know which number is more impressive—the 12 games the Bears won in the five years before Tedford or the 43 in the Tedford era.

Image Source: Ben Gallup, Daily Cal
Pac-10 football: Cal picked No. 2, Stanford last in poll [Mercury-News]
Middling major conference teams, top mid-majors among Nos. 25-50 [ESPN]
Teams just outside top 25 include big names, underachieving programs [ESPN]

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SI.com went college football crazy a few weeks ago. So, how does ESPN.com do it? Well, when you’re the World Wide Leader in Sports, you outsource, of course.

ESPN uses Blue Ribbon College Football Yearbook’s analysis and breaks down all 119 Division 1-A football teams.

While Blue Ribbon gives Cal passing marks on its report, we’d like to remind you to take it with a grain of salt. Yes, hype is everything, but get too hyped too early and lose badly in the first game of the year (like last year). Then you risk of falling so hard that you won’t be able to get back up.

But without further ado:

Blue Ribbon’s report card consists of four categories—offense, special teams, defense and intangibles. The Bears received an ‘A’ for offense, an ‘A+’ for special teams (thanks to the Golden Blur, DeSean Jackson), an ‘A-’ for intangible (no doubt thanks to God himself, Jeff Tedford) and a ‘B’ for defense.

Couple this with the fact that Athlon Sports ranked Cal just outside the top 10 in its preseason rankings, the hype machine must be working real hard for the Bears.

Blue Ribbon also thinks that Cal can win 11 games, play in a BCS bowl but not beat USC. They say that Bears fans (and maybe the entire college football community) will look back at last season’s 10-3 record, the loss to Arizona, in another-trip-to-the-Holiday-Bowl season, as the one that got away.

bq. When Tedford’s run at Cal ends, whether it’s in 2008 or 2028, there’s a real chance that last season will be looked upon — not only him but Cal fans — as their Moby Dick, the one that got away.

Also interesting is that they think that Tedford is one of the top two offensive geniuses in all of college football. They can’t make up their mind about whether or not Florida coach Urban Meyer is better, but at least Tedford is No. 2.

But Blue Ribbon thinks Cal is second-best in the Pac-10 only to the Trojans because of defense.

We’ll give you another reason—history and coaching. We’re going to say it, 2003 was a fluke. Sure the win over USC put the Bears on the map. But since then, they’ve faltered.

When so much is on the line, Cal has come up short. That’s what happened in Tucson last year. That’s what happened at the Coliseum last year and in 2004.

And what does this come down to? Coaching. Tedford plays not to lose. It’s cliché, but you’ve got to play to win, like our old buddy Herman Edwards said.

Daymeion Hughes put it best last year after the Bears’ loss to the Trojans.

bq. “Their coaches are some of the gutsiest ever,” said Cal cornerback Daymeion Hughes. “They think no matter what the situation is, they’re going to win.”

That’s something Cal doesn’t have yet.

Image Source: Ben Gallup, Daily Cal
Earlier: SI.com Goes College Football Preview Crazy, So We Do Too Team preview: California [ESPN.com]


Now, how could anything like that RANK NO. 2 on any list concerning college football, unless it’s in a list of the worst plays in college football history?

Well, that’s what ESPN’s Ivan Maisel thinks The Play should be in his list of the best 100 moments in college football history.

Before we get all up in arms about this travesty, let’s get a little bit of context. First, the No. 1 play of all time, according to Maisel, is Doug Flutie’s Hail Mary to give Miami a 47-45 defeat at the hands of Boston College, essentially giving Flutie the Heisman Trophy.

We kind of get that. The Eagles finished that year 10-2 and the Canes finished 8-5, and that is probably the most memorable pass in the history of football.

The Play, on the other hand, was between two schools that were at .500 or barely over .500, not exactly the same pressures when you have a Heisman candidate and a school trying to get into a major bowl for the first time in decades.

But nonetheless, it turns out that Maisel is a Stanfurd alum. So maybe Maisel was looking out for the old alma mater. And as the guys at The Band Is Out on the Field points out, the Indians/Cardinal get a few more mentions in his list than the Bears.

Stanfurd is mentioned five times on his list, which includes The Play, while Cal is only mentioned twice. And as TBIOOTF points out, the Bears have won a few more conference titles than the boys down on the Farm.

Are we saying that Maisel was a little biased? Look to the fact that UCLA was only mentioned twice on his list (while having EPIC battles with ‘SC and having a guy named Aikman lead their team) and Washington once (and remember U-Dub used to be good), and we’ll just let the numbers speak for itself.

What was the other mention of the Bears in Maisel’s list you ask?

It was Wrong Way Riegels’ blunder in the 1929 Rose Bowl against Georgia Tech. Riegels recovered a Tech fumble and ran the wrong way, giving the Yellow Jackets an easy two points. What was the final score of the game? 8-7 Georgia Tech.

Yeah. Infamous.

Stanford is the Bestest Footballers Evar! [TBIOOTF]
Iconic moments for college football’s time capsule [ESPN]

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Well it looks like Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Lee Corso won’t be in Berkeley on Sept. 1.

No, there will be no Corso donning an Oski head or Herbstreit spilling his arrogance into T.V. screens from the Cal campus.

Hokiesports.com, the PR machine for Virginia Tech, just announced that ESPN picked the Virginia Tech/East Carolina matchup to be the host site for College GameDay on college football’s opening weekend.

Now, as much as we would like to bitch and moan about how horrible and how slighted we feel that ESPN chose to take GameDay away from arguably the best matchup on Sept. 1, if we had to choose any other site for GameDay, it would have to be Blacksburg, Va.

After all, everything we know about the Hokies and Virginia Tech is due to what Frank Beamer has done with that football program. If it weren’t for that football team, we wouldn’t even know that a Virginia Tech existed (prior to the Virginia Tech shooting).

And after what happened last April, we say that the Hokies deserve to have GameDay. If it will help them heal, help them get over that horrible day, then let them have it.

Apparently, that’s what ESPN was going for when it picked Virginia Tech.

bq. “Virginia Tech is a special place and the community is one of the most respectful and passionate we have visited,” said Norby Williamson, ESPN’s executive vice president of production. “Our coverage will be considerate of the emotional day facing the students, faculty, and people of Blacksburg and the country.”

So GameDay’s not coming to Cal, but we couldn’t have picked a better place for it to go than Blacksburg.

But we say this: GameDay better be on the steps of Sproul Hall on Nov. 10 for the Bears/USC matchup.

Earlier: Cal Not Picked by GameDay Crew—At Least Not Yet
College GameDay to open season in Blacksburg [Hokie Sports]


Yesterday, the sports world saw one of the most boring and dumbest ideas in the history of sports take place: the NBA held its Draft Lottery yesterday, and yes, the Portland Trail Blazers are now on the clock.

Why does this matter? Because now all the major sports news sites are giving us their NBA mock drafts.

There was no doubt that a former Cal athlete was going to be a high-profile pick in the NFL draft last month, but to our surprise, a soon-to-be-maybe former Cal basketball player may also become a high-profile pick. Okay, maybe not too high-profile, but at least he may not waste away in the draft the way Leon Powe did last year.

ESPN.com’s Chad Ford thinks that DeVon Hardin can get picked up in the first round. Really? Why is this so?

bq. The Pistons could really shore up their backcourt here with a young, athletic shooter who got limited opportunity at Ohio State this season. (Ohio State’s Daequan) Cook still needs to work on his handle and his defense, but he’d be an excellent fit coming off the bench in Detroit. A big man like DeVon Hardin is also a possibility here.

Really? DeVon Hardin goes to the Detroit Pistons with pick No. 27 in the first round? Though Ford doesn’t give a reason why he used Hardin’s name instead of so-and-so-big-basketball-player’s-name-here, we’ll offer our reasons.

Well, he does make sense, since he’d be replacing the void Ben Wallace created when he left for Chicago this season. Hardin can be the shot-blocking-menace-with-no-offensive-ability the Pistons desperately need. Wallace never scored points and Hardin won’t have to either. Plus, Hardin fits in with that bland Detroit Pistons style. Plus, Detroit’s a great town! Maybe.

However, SI.com doesn’t even mention Hardin’s name anywhere in their mock. Draftexpress.com also doesn’t name him —and they have a mock for both rounds of the draft.

Earlier: A Few More Reason Why Hardin Should Stay in School Chad Ford’s Mock Draft, Version 1.1: Picks 1-30 [ESPN Insider] (subscription needed)
Chad Ford’s Mock Draft, Version 1.1: Picks 1-30 [7 Online (via ESPN Insider)] (no subscription needed)


The Daily Cal is reporting that ESPN has not yet chosen the Cal-Tennessee game as the site for their first show of the 2007 season of ESPN College GameDay, a highly popular college football pregame show.

TheBearInsider.com had reported that ESPN had chosen that game for the first College GameDay show of the year, but neither Cal nor ESPN could confirm that Chris Fowler, Lee Corso and Kirk Herbstreit will be in Berkeley on Sept. 1.

This is what John Sudsbury, a Cal spokesperson, told the Daily Cal:

The only thing we know right now is that we’re in consideration for it. Nothing has been decided yet and nothing has been confirmed, even though it was on that one website (BearInsider.com). They just said that we’re definitely in the consideration.

ESPN media guys have also denounced the rumor that Corso and Herbstreit will be checking out all the hot Tree-wok ladies on Sept. 1.

ESPN Senior Media Relations Director Rob Tobias said:

It’s unlikely that we’ve determined what sites we are going to visit in the fall just yet. I don’t think we’re even close to finalizing our schedule.

There are two possible scenarios for this fiasco: One, The Bear Insider jumped the gun. Or two, ESPN’s just being douchey and doesn’t want to announce that it’s coming to Berkeley just yet. You decide.

Earlier: ESPN College Gameday is Coming to Berkeley
ESPN Gameday Shoot At Cal Not a Certainty [Daily Cal]


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