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Golden Nuggets: The Sights and Traditions of Bay Area Football

No one picked Cal to beat USC, but is anyone surprised by that?

The Campanile


  • Monday Morning QB/Sports Illustrated has begun a series where they look at the sights and traditions of the football teams (All levels) of various cities in America. Their first stop? The Bay Area. Memorial Stadium (more specifically, Tightwad Hill) is mentioned. It is very well done.

The football weekend began with two cityscapes of football as life raft. Now, a couple of hours before Mississippi-Cal, on a walk to a 200-person tailgate in the center of campus, I witness three college football scenes:

• Two male drummers, in full Cal band uniforms with spatted shoes, are stopped by an Ole Miss fan, 65ish, dressed in a bright red polo with Ole Miss logo over the heart. The Rebel fan says: “Y’all know Dixie?” One of the kids says, “No. We’re from California.”

• On the way to the stadium, eight cheerleaders dressed in their blue-and-gold garb, with blue-and-gold pompoms, get stopped by a Cal fan, maybe 40. “Honey,” he says to his wife (presumably), “would you take our picture?” Four cheerleaders form on his left, four on his right. “Go Bears!” a couple of them say as the photo is snapped. “We’ve got our Christmas card photo, honey,” the guy says.

• At the Tap Haus, a German-style beer hall, a table of four pregamers identify themselves as recent Cal alums. The game is at 7:30; they look pretty well hammered. I ask how long they’ve been here. “Since 1,” one says. “It’s our tradition when we play Saturday nights—come here for a few hours, watch all the games from around the country, then go to our game.”

  • Picks: Who has Cal? Not surprisingly, no one I saw. Jon Wilner has Cal covering the 15 point spread but losing outright. Both ESPN writers have Cal losing close as well.
  • But wait... the Fansided USC blog thinks this could be a trap game for the Trojans.
  • The opposing team isn’t going to look past Cal though.
  • This negative (but not exactly wrong) Daily Cal article warns us that while the 3-0 start was fun, it’ll likely be a much less fun next few months for Cal fans.
  • Kanawai Noa has become a rising star for Cal, but he remains humble.
  • Jake Curhan surprised to get the Offensive game ball last Saturday, and other game notes from the SF Chronicle.
  • Trace Travers breaks down the numbers for USC.
  • Nam Le tells us Five Things to know about the USC game.


  • All videos courtesy of Golden Bear Report. For Transcripts, click the links provided but you will need a subscription. I will put in parentheses some of the subjects discussed.
Justin Wilcox (What changes between the first and second halves for the defense?)
Tim DeRuyter (Defensive improvements, especially in the LB position)
Ross Bowers (the hard hit he took against Ole Miss, and preparing against USC)
Devante Downs (Preparing for USC)
Gerald Alexander (Preparing for USC)


  • Emma Westin took Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week for her performance last weekend. The Cal women’s soccer team swept a homestand against good Oklahoma and Oklahoma State teams.
  • Cal men and women’s golf have joined into a partnership with Parsons Xtreme Golf (or PXG) and their University Program. PXG will provide their groundbreaking equipment to the teams.
  • Damon Treadwell, who recently recovered from Tommy John surgery, has committed to Cal baseball and will play this season.
  • Antzela Dempi, from the great city of Thessaloniki, Greece, has become a huge part of Cal Volleyball’s hot start. Check out this feature on the senior as she hopes to lead Cal back to the NCAA Tournament in her final season. It was posted before Cal lost to Stanford yesterday.

Gå Björnar!