(6) Steve Bartkowski
Not much Cal footage (by not much I mean none) of Bartkowski on the internet, so we'll relive his most famous NFL play.
As for his time at Cal, Tightwad Hill recapped his storybook season.
There's no harder player to rate than #17 on our 50 Greatest countdown. Steve Bartkowski is, of course, the only Golden Bear to be picked #1 in the NFL draft. No quarterback in the school's history possessed the arm strength of #10, who was reported by assistant coach Paul Hackett to have thrown a football 100 yards in the air at practices. Few if any players matched his overall athletic ability; Bartkowski was also a magnificent baseball player who made All-America as a 1st baseman in 1973.
In his senior year of 1974, Bartkowski put it all together once he got to work with Hackett, a punchline of a head coach who was nevertheless a gifted tutor of quarterbacks. He convinced Bartkowski to trade velocity for accuracy, and the results were spectacular. Despite playing through the pain of a separated shoulder, Bart led the nation with 2,580 yards passing and earned consensus All-America honors for the 7-3-1 Bears. He topped the 300 yard mark four times (Washington, WSU, UCLA, Stanford); each of those efforts came after the shoulder injury, suffered in a 31-14 upset win over #14 Illinois in Champaign. Bartkowski finished 10th in voting for the Heisman that year, and would almost surely have ranked higher had he received even a modest amount of pre-season hype.
(2) 2010 Men's Basketball Seniors
When Monty retired earlier this year we looked back at our fondest memories of the Mike Montgomery era. A common thread in our responses was the 2009-10 season, anchored by an unforgettable group of seniors.
What is your favorite memory of the Monty Era?
atomsareenough: Definitely, it was beating James Harden and Arizona State at Haas to win Cal's first Pac-10 championship in 50 years. I was there for that one too, and it was a great celebration. That year was also the lovable Randle/Christopher/Robertson/Boykin/Jorge team, which provided another top Monty era moment, the epic comeback at Haas against Stanford. Other honorable mentions: This year's Arizona game, the 3OT Washington game, last year's games against Oregon, beating Louisville in the Tourney.
Ruey Yen: Winning the Pac-10 conference and have all those seniors cutting down the net will always have a special place in my heart. It is a moment that I dream about when I was a student, and Monty played a huge part in making that a reality (even if the rest of the Pac was weak).
Berkelium97: Easy: winning our first conference title in 50 years.
1. Winning the first Pac-12 championship in 50 years against ASU at home
LeonPowe: The entire season of the Randle/Robertson/P.Chris/Boykin senior team. Watching Jerome drop 3s from deep, P. Chris with his smooth game, Theo fill in exactly in the place he was needed. Jorge defending 7 different guys in 5 minutes. Boykin with his jump hooks. If only Kamp was healthy that year - I think we could've gone a few more rounds in the tournament.
Relive the magic: