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During the East Coast leg of the Pac-12 media tour, ESPN had the chance to sit down with Jeff Tedford. ESPN did not ask much about the upcoming season, but instead asked about several details that Tedford does not ordinarily have the chance to talk about.
If you could take a mulligan on any coaching decision you've ever made, what would it be?
The shovel pass we called against SC in 2004. The tackle didn't [block] deep enough. The [defender] got up underneath the pitch, and Aaron [Rodgers] had to pull it down and we had to take a sack. (Cal subsequently threw two incompletions with just over a minute left from the USC 14-yard line before turning the ball over on downs in a 23-17 loss.)
How much did your first coaching job pay?
Fifty thousand a year with Calgary in the Canadian Football League, but I was [previously] a volunteer assistant at Fresno State for zero. It was $50,000 Canadian, though. [Laughs.] Back in those days, it was about 25 percent less [than U.S. dollars].
Did the wide-open style of play in the CFL help shape your coaching philosophy?
Different formations. Being able to flood sides. That was my first introduction to empty backfield packages, and because the field is so big there's a lot of pocket movement by the quarterbacks. Those are generally the kinds of quarterbacks they have -- athletic quarterbacks who move. Different protections schemes to exchange and move the pocket.
Which opposing player are you most glad you no longer have to face and why?
Jacquizz Rodgers, because he's such a talented guy. He can hurt you in so many ways. He's very difficult to tackle, tough and durable. He made a lot of big plays, so I'm glad to see him gone.
Not counting yourself, who's the best dressed coach in the conference?
Cap or visor?
Cap. Because I don't wanna burn my bald head.
After the jump we have more from ESPN's Pac-12 interviews, SFGate and Comcast preview the 2011 football season, and Fresno State fans plan to outnumber Cal fans at Candlestick Park.
- ESPN also interviewed the other 11 Pac-12 coaches: Parts 1, 2, and 3. Mike Stoops had the best comment of the entire article. ESPN asked about coaches' surprising recreational hobbies; here's what Stoops said about his shopping hobby:
"I'm good at it. I know what fruit to pick out. ... I'm a regular. If they don't see me for a while, they ask me where I've been."
- Despite a near-identical pricing plan, Fresno State's ticket office has sold 12,000 tickets to next weekend's game compared to a paltry 7,500 from the Cal ticket office.
- Mitchell Schwartz and Keenan Allen missed the cut on Ted Miller's top-25 player rankings.
- CalBears.com checks in with a pair of senior specialists: Bryan Anger and Giorgio Tavecchio.
- Did you miss Comcast Sports Net's 2011 Cal football preview? The ever-reliable PRD74 uploaded the entire episode.
- SFGate previews the 2011 Pac-12 season. The Bears are predicted to finish fourth in the division, though a higher finish is possible if Zach Maynard is any better than average.
- Cal's fortunes this season rely heavily on how well QB Zach Maynard performs. Tedford and Maynard talk about the upcoming season in this SFGate piece.
- Wilner looks at the Pac-12's options for expansion, particularly filling that fourth spot that Texas would have taken.
- Former Bear Lewy Boulet was named USA Track and Field's Athlete of the Week. On August 14th she won the seven-mile New Balance Falmouth Road Race with an impressive time of 36:58.
- Junior Donothan Bailey and senior Glen Ishino earned places on the US Senior National Team. They will represent the US at the Pan-American games in Mexico this October.
- CalBears.com interviews pitcher Arianna Erceg, who talks about her freshman season last year.
- Ben An, Max Homa, Nick Thomas, and Michael Weaver participated in the US Amateur Championship but were cut after not making the top-64.
- Eight Bears (seven players, one assistant coach) are on the US National Team, which will begin play at the Rugby World Cup on September 11th.