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Golden Nuggets: Tom Holmoe rejoices as he is no longer responsible for Cal's worst season

Tom Holmoe discusses his connection to Cal and how he uses those struggles to succeed in his new life.

Raise your hand if you've no longer coached the worst season in Cal history!
Raise your hand if you've no longer coached the worst season in Cal history!
George Frey

Looking for some shelter from that lovely family time around the holidays? Where better than CGB and the Golden Nuggets?!

Perhaps one of the worst memories lingering in the mind of any Old Blue is the Holmoecaust--the years of fabulous football failures under the leadership of Coach Tom Holmoe, which "peaked" in the 2001 season with one lone win against an equally hapless Rutgers squad. Well, now that Sonny Dykes's Bear Raid debut was arguably worse, Holmoe reflected on his relationship with Cal.

"I had a great experience there," Holmoe said. "I know some people might think that's strange. But I loved the people there. It's a great, great place. The affinity for the school was so strong. I wanted to have success. But as time passes, I'm way more well-aware of the mistakes and errors I made at Cal. ... Sonny's got a good temperament for that job. I think he can get it done."

However, Holmoe was able to recover and find success as an administrator at BYU, learning from his past experience.

The Bears community's general verdict about Holmoe was this: great guy, hard worker, sincere as the day is long -- but far better suited to be an administrator than a coach.

"I think that's pretty accurate," Holmoe said with a chuckle . "It's easier for me to say that, more than 10 years after I left . . . I was probably a little over my head. ... In hindsight, I wasn't prepared for the job."


"The mistakes I made at Cal, they've helped me a lot in my job now," Holmoe said. "When I'm meeting with a BYU coach, in any sport, we might be in a discussion about an issue or a player and I can say: 'I've gone down that road before and we're not going to do it that way.' And the coaches know I'm not saying that because I think I'm more important than them, but because I've been there. It's more like, 'I screwed up on this kind of thing once and I don't want it to happen to you.' "

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