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Golden Nuggets: Interview with Jeff Tedford

Reminder: if you have not already, head over here to predict the winner of each of the Pac-12's 54 conference games this season.  We're nearing 1,000 responses but we could always use more!

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.

On September 18th Cal is organizing a walk for lung cancer while honoring the memory of Jill Costello and Frank Renda.


  • ESPN also interviewed the other 11 Pac-12 coaches: Parts 12, 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."

Track and Field