Sunday morning it was like a death in the Family. Only Edward Albee could adequately describe it.
Friday night in
In between came Saturday. The type of day that will try men’s souls and empty their wallets if they followed their hearts and not their heads.
Will we never learn? Are we destined for ever to push that rock up the hill, just about reaching the crest, only to watch it slip away from us and roll back down to the bottom again?
Sisyphus had it easy compared to being a Bears fan.
I guess we are so naive that we set ourselves up for disaster. This was the first time since I was a kid in 1958 that I sat in the stands, secure in the knowledge that, no pollsters, no commissioners, no computers could deny us the Holy Grail. One win. One simple victory and the coveted Golden Fleece would be ours.
Friday night set the tone, and the stars seemed to be in alignment—at least they were all out.
Like two years ago, when we are out with him, it’s like going on safari. One’s head is on a swivel, looking for “sightings.” The hope is to bag one of the big five, Rhino, Lion, Wildebeest, Cheetah, or Leopard. Remember—the big 5 only come out after dark.
(You have to understand that when you live in a town of 6,000 people, it’s exciting to go to
Well, it was dinner at Il Solei, and sure enough Rod Stewart was dining next to us. (One assumes he helped his date with her homework before bringing her out to din din). It’s not that she was young, but we over heard her ordering a scotch and wah-wah.
Next morning, we bagged Harry Connick Jr. and Neil Young. But the sun was up so they don’t count.
After dinner it was off to the Sky Bar in the Mondrian Hotel.
I’m not sure we spotted any of the big 5 there, but there certainly some big things on the deck—and this before the FDA ruled that implants will be legal again.
The 30 somethings wanted to head off to the uber-exclusive “Hide.” We oldsters hit the sack, satiated with our gawking tourist evening.
Alas, had we tagged along, we’d a-bagged-a-biggie. Paris Hilton showed up and partied on with the group. No doubt she was disappointed we were back closing down the Bel Aire Bar. But let’s face it. We were all wearing underwear that evening. So, I’m sure she would have considered us sooooooooo 90’s.
We awoke wide eyed with anticipation. The victory was ripe for the plucking.
starts are not good for one’s heart. Too much time.
We headed to the Beverly Hills Hotel for some tennis, and then fortunately had the OSU/Michigan game to take our minds off our delayed start.
And was that ever a football game. Two teams rising to the occasion.
How do the players pass the time when they have to wait all day to play?
We drove through Crenshaw (had rarely seen it without smoke) and made it to the Alumni Tailgate.
Memo to Tuck: You’re the best. Congrats. We need you as President. Now, please take note. This is not just from me. No more tailgates where you charge $65 and then charge $5 per beer—and then have only two kegs and long, long lines form.
Folks like Krepps came from
We had the coaches. We had the players. We had the physical toughness to emerge victorious.
First: Were this game played three years ago, we win. Two plays which were ruled TD’s on the field, were overturned by TV review. The fix wasn’t in. It’s just that the human error which allowed UCLA’s Dennis Dummit to be called in the end zone--when his knees touched at the three yard line back in the day—has been somewhat eliminated.
I know. It goes both ways. It’s just an interesting sidebar to a dreary day.
So what did happen?
Since you didn’t ask, my guess is that the weather beat us.
One couldn’t tell from TV or even in the stands, but a heavy fog had rolled in. I was on the field in the third quarter (Jeans avers that that is what jinxed ‘em) and it was unbelievably wet, dank and soggy. The fog had turned a fast field into a quasi-quagmire. Both QB’s threw wobbly passes, as they were unable to grip the ball. Lineman couldn’t get off their blocks, nor mount a pass rush—and backs seemed to be treading water.
It was equal for both teams, but a slow field always favors the team with less talent, as it “levels the playing field.”
We had two turnovers in the first half (one leading to a safety against them), and still led 9 to 6. We lead in every statistical category.
Then came the dreaded third quarter.
We’ve scored only 51 points in 11 third quarters—4.6 points per game. In fact, we’ve scored only 114 points in the third and 4th quarter all year—10.3 points per game.
A touch and a field goal vs. 21.3 points in the first half. Three touches vs. one.
Are teams in better shape than we are? Are teams making better adjustments than we do? Do we just relax because (with the exception of
We’ve actually been outscored in the last two quarters 118 to 114 points—against 106 points vs. 235 in the first two.
How do we score over twice as many points as our opponents in the first have, and get outscored in the second?
Note that (statistically) the D has performed consistently for all 4 quarters.
I have no answers, but were I a staff, I’d try to figure that one out.
So what did happened?
Fans bitched (and Tedford remarked) that we couldn’t make less than a yard on two plays in that all important third quarter.
Fans around us wanted razzle dazzle. They questioned whether Tedford had lost his audacity.
Those of us who are old school, like taking it straight to ‘em. It shows confidence in the line and in your team. And if you are the most physical—which we were, we should have made it—either by Lynch or on the QB sneak.
On the other hand, with 4th and one, Carroll threw for an audacious TD.
We weren’t out coached as so many said. Reverse it, and we’d have been screaming for smash mouth football.
Both are proper calls. Why one work and the other did didn’t? My guess is the weather. It was too slippery to make the short yardage, and the slipperiness did not work against the play action pass. Take it for what it’s worth.
The only true breakdown from an armature’s point of view, was the TD to Jarret. We all saw him in single coverage near the goal line. Though the safety put a monstrous hit on him—it came after the catch!
Where was he earlier? Wouldn’t one have been shading that side and doubling on him?
This is not Monday morning quarterbacking. We all remarked on it before the ball was snapped.
Longshore had a tough day. But he was hurried.
An interesting visual: Terrified of
Lynch ran some 60 yards for a score, late in the game, but the review showed that his knee had touched. It appeared to be correct, but pre-replay?
Lynch also dove for a first down when it was all but over. He showed a lot of heart, and as an aside, the paper said he’s got a 3.0 and is awfully proud of that—as are we.
As a further aside, apparently after the game he said “They” when referring to the team next year—a dead give away that he won’t be back.
Thompson has come a long way from the
Well, we (the fans) brought it upon ourselves.
We are not worthy. We let our expectations get too high. It was a down, down day. However. At least, we’ll always have
Jeffrey Earl Warren ’70
Here’s a nice bit from the website regarding academics:
In addition to Storer and Bundy, sophomore center Alex Mack, junior defensive lineman John Allen and junior linebacker Greg Van Hoesen were honored as second team picks. Three Bear offensive linemen collected honorable mention honors: seniors Erik Robertson and Scott Smith and sophomore Noris Malele.
In Tedford's five years at the helm of the
As for the game, we are -- literally and figuratively -- a year away. . . . Then the problem will be how do we deal with the fact that this year USC is loaded with freshmen and sophomores?
USC will be a nail-biter for as long as Tedford is at
From Hal on the Stanfurd band
From John (Is there a theme here?)
From Dave Bush (regarding the out of bounds hit on Bates back in the 50’s)
Mike McKeever......doing the bidding of the SC line coach Al Davis.....
have a blast...db