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Golden Nuggets: Boosters are pleased—cautiously—with Dykes's early progress

Prominent Cal figures and boosters seem happy with Coach Sonny Dykes's ability to improve a dying program, but aren't yet ready to declare him as the Chosen One.

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

With the offseason upon us, the conversation will invariably turn to evaluating the progress—or lack of—of Coach Sonny Dykes and his staff. When it comes to his job security, the opinions of the fans matter a little bit through ticket sales. The opinions of bloggers matter extensively because we're all so smart and handsome. The opinions that matter the most are those of the boostersthe fancy moneybags who help the program pay for everything. Like, the kind of people who get the Lisa and Douglas Goldman plaza named after them.

[O]ne can say Cal's 5-7 record represented a step in the right direction for Dykes, whose team was 1-11 in 2013. Those preseason thoughts from major boosters may have shifted when the Bears jumped out to a surprising 4-1 start, but losing six of their final seven games was a disappointment. The positive effect created by Cal's high-powered offense was often erased by a defense that allowed the most passing yards in FBS history.

"Getting over the hump in college football is a hard thing to do," Dykes said. "We had an opportunity to do it this year; just didn't get it done."

So, how do these bigwigs feel about Dykes? Is he the guy to get us over that hump?

Goldman is one of Dykes' supporters, for now. He wants Cal fans to be patient and thinks Dykes should have two more seasons before he's judged.

"Regretfully, the program had deteriorated so much in the last three years under Jeff [Tedford,]" Goldman said. "You're talking about the proverbial turning the huge ship around. It takes a long time."

Quarterback J. Torchio and Gary Slavit (President of the Cal Grid Club of Sacramento) believe we should be "very, very proud" of where the team is and that "Sonny is doing a lot of the right things" in spite of inheriting a flawed program. However, all of these VIPs recognize that they're still not completely certain about Dykes as it's just too early to predict his future.

So, what does Dykes intend to do in the future to continue this team's improvement?

"We certainly have to get better on the back end of our defense," Dykes said. "We just didn't have the depth we needed. We have to get bigger back there."

On his radio show after the season, Dykes said he hopes to recruit two defensive tackles, three defensive ends and eight players in the secondary.

Needless to say, our notorious financial problems mean Dykes must turn Cal into a money-making program (by making it a successful program) or our boosters may pressure the university for a new coach...

Cal Spirit

  • If you follow us on Twitter, then you've probably heard that Oski was competing in an obviously important Mascot GIF Competition through the Pac-12 Networks. We campaigned hard and Oski didn't just win, but we got him to #drop50 and garner 50% of all votes! And if you already followed us on Twitter, then we're so sorry for spamming you with #VoteOski. (Sorry we're actually not sorry.)

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