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Interesting Quotes and Insights from Dickey

Glenn Dickey published an article a few days ago with some GREAT quotes from Tedford regarding our QBs.  Although this article has already been linked in a Daily Bear Dump, it is far too revealing and interesting to not get front page attention. 

You may click here to read the entire Dickey article with some SF Giants news, Warriors news, and A's news, or click the "Continue reading this post..." link below to read only the Cal related part which I have copied in full.

Here is the Cal related information in Dickey's article:

JEFF TEDFORD made an interesting comparison between his quarterbacks, Nate Longshore and Kevin Riley, at the annual Bay Area college football meeting on Monday.

“With Nate,” he said, “he’ll go through the progressions (on pass plays) for No. 1,2,3, 4 and even 5. With Kevin, he’ll go to 1 and 2 and, if nothing’s there, take the ball down and try to make a play himself.

“So, with Nate, we’re trying to maybe get him to hurry it up slightly because if he looks for 5, the pressure might get to him. With Kevin, we’re trying to get him to be a little more patient and look for 3, but we’re not trying to change his game. Sometimes, it’s a good thing to be ready to make a play if the receiver isn’t open.”

Predictably, most of the questions directed at Tedford were about his quarterbacks, but the order remains the same: Longshore is No. 1 right now, but Riley will play more this season.

As anybody who read me in the last year knows, I was eager to see Riley as the starter in the second half of the season. But as the coach, Tedford has to consider other factors that aren’t always obvious to media and fans.

One is that Riley didn’t always work as hard at practice as he should have – a shortcoming he’s rectified; in the spring, he worked very hard and looked good, too.

Another is that some of Longshore’s interceptions and incompletions came because receivers didn’t run the right patterns. Tedford never says this, of course, but there was some hint of this in the tumble DeSean Jackson took in the NFL draft. When he reported to the Philadelphia Eagles camp, there were reports that one of his adjustments would be to run precise routes.

There was also the personal factor: To bench Longshore would have effectively ruined any chance he had of playing in the NFL. Before the second half of last season, he had been highly ranked by those evaluating pro prospects among college players. Tedford is obviously fond of Longshore, which is understandable. Longshore is a standup guy, always willing to take the blame if something goes wrong. He’s never pointed a finger at a teammate, especially with receivers who ran the wrong routes.

On and off-the-record, I’ve talked frequently to Tedford about this situation, and I believe that he really thought Longshore gave the Bears the best chance to win last year. I also believe that he has much more confidence in Riley this year and won’t be reluctant to make a change this season if he thinks it will help the team win.

As a former quarterback himself, Tedford is very much aware that quarterbacks get too much credit when the teams wins and too much blame when they lose, and that was certainly the case last season.

Tedford thinks that the players had trouble dealing with the free fall from the 5-0 start because they’d never been in that situation before. There was clearly a lack of leadership among the players, with nobody stepping up to take the roles that Marshawn Lynch (offense) and Desmond Bishop (defense) had assumed the year before. The defense absolutely fell apart against Washington, probably the worst effort I’ve seen from a Tedford-coached team, allowing a staggering 360 yards rushing. Probably saved Tyrone Willingham’s job, too.

Tedford did a lot of soul-searching in the offseason and has changed his overall approach, handing over the playcalling to Frank Cignetti and trying to be more involved with the whole team. I believe he’ll be more flexible in dealing with the quarterback decisions, too.

But we all need to take a deep breath and realize that there were many more problems than the quarterback play last season.

And Tedford remains the best Cal coach I have seen in more than half a century of watching the Bears.