This is a quick look at Friday and Saturday's events. Sadly, there is nothing really free that's happening (I'll drop some links after the jump), so I'm going to spend this time giving kudos to Cal Athletics for finally catching up to the rest of the Pac-12 social-media wise.
Previous fall practice stories: Kodiak's camp preview | Practice #6 | #5 | #4 | #3 | #2 | #1
After years of toiling behind the rest of the conference in terms of promotion, public relations, and especially the Internet, the new staff are on point. You can tell Cal's video staff has been significantly upgraded, and these vids definitely give Cal a much stronger promotional arm for the new age of college athletics.
Take this for example (which is worth sharing again, in case you missed it the first time).
It's not exactly Bernard Pollard getting down with his bad self, but damn. Could you imagine something this professional three years ago? This was considered the standard of excellence a decade ago.
Obvious joke is obvious.
The new facilities might not just end up attracting better players, but also might have finally attracted the staff we need that brings Cal Athletics the organization out of the dark ages. The Gold Standard package for the ESP people seems to also have raised the standard of customer service, particularly since there's now great incentive for the Cal Athletic Department to get people to buy as many tickets as possible. There seems to be a more proactive attempt by the staff to communicate with the fans. The Cal Athletics Twitter account has been run excellently the past year or so, thanks largely in part to our new social media manager Sundeep Dhillon (who helped organize the Blog in the Fog event last year). I'm impressed.
If anything stands out, it's the video. The YouTube productions Cal Athletics has been putting out are of the highest caliber. The four part Hard Knock series on Cal football is looking really strong. The practice videos provided out of camp give you a taste without revealing too much about what's happening on the field.
And this promo video is lights ahead of anything we ever did during the times when Cal was at the top of the league (hell, even I kind of now believe last season was better than it was watching this!)
Not everything is fixed. Whoever's in charge of press releases could use an adrenaline rush (the original headline after Dana Vollmer won the 100 meter butterfly in world record time was "Vollmer Nets Medal In Day Two", which would be like saying "Aaron Rodgers Throws Completions In Super Bowl"), and there are still times where it looks like the bureaucracy overwhelms the new staff.
But I'm liking what I'm seeing. Which is better than previous years, when we were seeing close to nothing.
Almost everything worth reporting on is behind the paywall sadly. I'm not sure what they're telling Crumpacker and Faraudo to do at their newspapers, but clearly Cal football is not a priority at either outlet. (Counting down the days until the Pac-12 Network. Three to go.)
- Bear Insider ($): Day 7 and Day 8 reviews, plus Brennan Scarlett interview
- Bear Territory ($): Positional highlight videos.
Tedford had the sunglasses on yesterday. You know he can't be happy if the sunglasses are on.
Looks like the defense is still managing to get a bit of an upper hand, although it's nice to hear the offense recovering at the end and regaining their second wind. The defensive line is apparently getting banged up a little bit too much though for Tedford's comfort.
"They're all back, but that's an area where we're dinged a little bit, so we have to be careful," Tedford said. "We have to monitor certain things to make sure that we don't put them in a position where we can injure someone. We have to monitor that."
Here's the Friday presser, which appears to be a one-on-one genuine Q&A with the Bear Insider intern (everyone else was on vacation or something).
Want your dose of new guys? Meet Bryce Treggs and Chris Harper.
Meet your new left tackle in Tyler Rigsbee, who has big shoes to fill.
There isn't much else to report, so hope this satisfies your Sunday football cravings.