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Golden Nuggets: Dykes Impressed with Cal's Resources, Says "You Can Win a National Championship at Cal"

Bruce Feldman pens an excellent article on Sonny Dykes' road to Berkeley and his football philosophy. Coach Dykes was drawn by the university's resources and commitment to excellence; he believes Cal is one of a handful of institutions in the nation with the resources to win a national championship.


CBS' Bruce Feldman has an excellent, lengthy article on Dykes' values and beliefs, on and off the field. First and foremost, he's a man of his word. It took the Texas native a while to break into the coaching ranks. Shortly after joining Hal Mumme's staff at Kentucky, he received his dream offer: one from the Texas Longhorns.

Dykes got hired as a GA by Kentucky in January, but in March, while he was back in Lubbock, the Texas Longhorns called.

"I asked my dad and he said, 'You made a commitment to those guys and you need to stick with it.' Best advice I've ever gotten. I went to Kentucky and was fortunate enough to be around some guys that were on the cutting edge of college football."

Dykes eventually was hired by Mumme's top assistant at Kentucky, Mike Leach, when Leach replaced Spike Dykes at Texas Tech. The younger Dykes worked with Leach in Lubbock six seasons. He later spent three years as Arizona's offensive coordinator before he landed the head coaching job at Louisiana Tech, where he transformed a listless program into one that went 17-8 the past two seasons. Last fall, his team led the nation in total offense and was impressive enough that Dykes became one of the hottest commodities in coaching. He ended up taking the Cal job.

Dykes commented on how impressed he was with the university's commitment to excellence.

"The big thing was the resources here," Dykes said of why he opted for Cal. "It is the flagship university for the sixth-largest economy in the world. I liked it from the outside, and usually when you find out more things about a place, the warts starts to show up, but the more I found out about Cal, the better it was.

"You can win a national championship at Cal, and I don't think there are many places out there like that."

Later on the article transitions into football, specifically what Dykes has done in the past and what he plans to do at Cal. As he's said many times since being hired by the Bears, his offensive philosophy is actually very simple.

"Football's really changed," he said. "There's about three different ways to create deception, and that's what you have to do offensively. You have the old wing-T or single wing or wishbone teams where you create deception within the play. You can do it before the snap with motion and shifts, like what Jim Harbaugh did and what Stanford's doing. Or you can go fast and play with fast tempo. We've gone from that shift, motion move and playing with tempo.

"We didn't do it with smoke and mirrors (at Louisiana Tech). We did it by recruiting players that fit our program and we developed players and by playing good fundamental football. That's the thing that gets lost. People watch you and see that you're going fast and they think somehow you're doing it with this magic scheme, it's not. It's technique and fundamental football and being able to execute. Those are the same reasons why Alabama wins."

Dykes has said all the right things since being hired by Cal...although if we must pick nits, he has emphasized a national championship much more than he has emphasized winning a Rose Bowl.



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