Update: Coach Sonny Dykes took to Twitter to share his thoughts about the rule change.
New rule slowing down college football at its height of popularity isn't about player safety, it's about a who runs college football.— Sonny Dykes (@CALCoachDykes) February 14, 2014
The NCAA is considering a rule that will force offenses to wait at least ten seconds to play, citing the need to allow for defensive substitutions. One key motivating factor for this change is the rise of up-tempo offenses and the claim that tired defensive players are more susceptible to injury. As masters of the up-tempo offense, I can only imagine Head Coach Sonny Dykes and Offensive Coordinator Tony Franklin will have some opinions on the matter.
[Franklin] thinks its a reactionary move by coaches who prefer traditional, defense-oriented football and he isn't worried it will slow down his offense.
He's also not buying the committee's rationale that safety is the reason for the change.
"If it was truly a safety issue, what they should do is not let defenses hide their blitzes until the last second or send someone off the edge to hit a quarterback in the back. That's the advantage the defense has, to do all those things at the last second."
Franklin said he's unaware of any data showing that uptempo football is resulting in more injuries. "I've never seen anything ever, except the opinions of defensive coaches," he said.
While Franklin is critical of the claims that safety is the primary force behind these changes, he does not predict the changes would have a considerable slow-down on the Bear Raid.
The Bears averaged 88 offensive snaps per game last season, and Franklin guessed that perhaps four or five of those each game came before the play clock reached 29 seconds. So he's not worried this will change what the Bears are trying to do.
"I don't see it playing a huge role," he said. "It's just a pacifying thing of some nature. I don't think it will have much impact."
For thoughts from other coaches, including WSU's Mike Leach and Arizona's Rich Rodriguez, check out this ESPN article.
Also, the Cal family got together on Wednesday night for a vigil to honor the life of Ted Agu.
💙💛 At @CalMemorialStad for memorial service for @CalFootball's Ted Agu. #Ted35 pic.twitter.com/U0ObQmmvOS— Linda Cogozzo (@calballgirl) February 13, 2014
Well over 1,000 here at California Memorial Stadium to pay tribute to #TedAgu. Incredibly touching.— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) February 13, 2014
Ted's teammates and frat brothers all spoke lovingly of the pre-med student.
"Ted is the inspiration for life," said one of his Omega Psi Phi fraternity members. "Let it hurt so bad that you have to smile. You can't think of a sad moment with Ted, because it doesn't exist."
Cal teammate Nick Forbes said Agu's "embrace of life" will guide him forever, and athletic director Sandy Barbour said one of the things she heard repeatedly in recent days "was not that 'Ted was' but 'Ted is,' that Ted will always influence us."
[Stefan] McClure described the past five days as "rough," adding, "Everyone grieves in their separate ways. Nobody handles that on their own, but we have 100 brothers on our team."
The team also has a locker-room memorial up for their fallen brother.
I know u were lookin down on us tonight&smiling like always.Ima think of that every time I walk past this. RIP, fam pic.twitter.com/mkiiq5863a— Cameron Walker (@CameronBW3) February 13, 2014
The Cal Scout site has some more details from the event, including more quotes and more of the tributes to honor Ted.
Dykes said, "You don't summarize a man like Ted with words. The only way you can do it, is with deeds."
For well over two hours, those in attendance were lifted up by fond memories of Agu. Pre-Med Ted, as he was known by his teammates, was a renaissance man. Not only a public health major, not only a football player, Agu was also a piano player and the Keeper of Finance for Omega Psi Phi. The first thing mentioned in nearly every speech was his infectious smile.
CalBears.com has some more quotes from the event, including Sandy Barbour and Ted's family.
Gatherers to the plaza were shown a slideshow of Ted that showcased the many different and admiral sides to his life and personality. Soccer player Emi Lawson announced a banner of Agu will be hung outside Memorial Stadium. At the end of the service, everyone holding a candle placed it on the glass railing that borders the plaza.
The final guests of the podium were Agu's three sisters. Ted's older sister, Cindy, was sincerely awed and grateful by the turnout and heartfelt stories about her brother. But she also had a message for everyone that Ted touched.
"No more crying," she said. "Ted would never want any of you to cry."
Because, as another speaker put it Wednesday night: "Teddy Agu brought joy."
These excerpts don't come close to properly honoring Ted, so I strongly recommend you read the full stories linked above.
- Tim Elmore spoke to our student-athletes, including Nick Forbes, Vice President of the GBAC, this spring
- Zsofi Susanyi is the Pac-12 Player of the Week after Cal made it to the semifinals of the ITA Team Indoor National Championships
- Sitting down with Devon Rodriguez, who went from being a hero during Cal's magical 2011 season to enduring a pair of "nightmarish" and injury-ridden seasons
- Brittany Boyd is on the Naismith Trophy Women's Midseason 30 list, making her one of only four players in the country to be on five such award watchlists
- The Golden Bears (16–8, 7–4 Pac-12) escaped from Pullman with an overtime win over the Cougars (9–15, 2–10 Pac-12)
- Jabari Bird is trying to return to his pre-injury form, but fear of not living up to expectations may be getting in the way; a quantitative breakdown of the numbers before and after injury
- Pierre Ingram is one of the Pac-12's top-ten recruiters!
- Cal has four of the Pac-12's top-20 running backs of the BCS era: Marshawn Lynch, J.J. Arrington, Jahvid Best, and Justin Forsett
- Cousin Kev uses the Mailbag to continue the discussion on coaching hot seats and issues related to turning around a program--with some mention of Cal and Coach Sonny Dykes in particular
- A candid and--frankly--somewhat sad look at the final season of TE Tony Gonzalez, which was a disappointing and lackluster finish to a Hall of Fame career