The Daily Cal has a great story on Ron Gould today. More than a fantastic running backs coach, he's a developer of young men who excel both on and off the field.
Gould's objective is to develop the running backs not just as players, but also as men. He mentions the "mistakes" that he has made in his life, the "ups and downs" that he's faced, and his goal of ensuring that each young man who passes through his tutelage goes on to avoid pitfalls on his own path.
That's why he wants them to come to him with problems or concerns. That's why for the last 10 years, on the pre-game test that he gives to the running backs, the last question has asked them to write something about themselves that Gould doesn't already know.
That's why, when Igber returns to Memorial Stadium to visit, he'll tell Gould, "The things that I learned from you are the things that I take not only on the football field, but that carry over in life."
"That is so gratifying because I know that I'm reaching these kids," says Gould. "And that's what I want to do. I want to make a difference in these kids' lives."
He reached one in Forsett.
"He always kept me grounded," says Forsett. "He always said, 'Don't let your highs be too high and don't let your lows be too low,' and that's something I carry today, no matter what it is.
After the jump I have stories about Minnesota's weaknesses which need to be overcome this weekend, trouble preparing for the Gopher defense, a Q+A between CaliforniaGoldenBlogs and Daily Gopher, press conference quotes from Cal defense players, a look at what Cal needs to do to win, a weather report for the game, and more.
It looks like it's going to be about 70° at 50% humidity at kickoff and warm up to about 75° at 40% humidity during Saturday's game. The weather and time change should not be an issue whatsoever.
- CGB answers some questions from our SBN brethren over at Daily Gopher, Minnesota's sports blog. Try to figure out which CGBer wrote which paragraphs!
- The Minnesota offense has to overcome its bouts of stagnancy if it hopes to keep up with Cal this Saturday. The Bears can take advantage of Minnesota's poor kickoff coverage (30 yards per return against Air Force). Minnesota recognizes that trying to stop Best has to be a team effort. Gophers' linebackers coach John Butler: "But if one guy gets out of his gap, if one guy does what he's not supposed to do, he'll find it — then he's gone."
- This weekend Cal faces another new defensive coordinator and doesn't have much tape to study.
- Press conference quotes from DJ Holt, Eddie Young, and Derrick Hill on topics such as Eric Decker, playing on the road, and mental toughness.
- SFExaminer has an article on Minnesota's linebacker Nate Triplett.
- CBS Sports previews the Cal-Minnesota matchup; all five of CBS's experts predict a Cal victory.
- Team leaders like Kevin Riley and DJ Holt emphasize the need for the Bears to be mentally tough on the road.
- The Daily Cal's midweek notebook has some interesting tidbits: Tavecchio will retain his kickoff duties, Brian Holley sustained a concussion Saturday but should be cleared to play against Minnesota.