Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Emerald Bowl Events

First, Great news from Grealish:

To everyone,
Good news from Steve Finau. We're hoping to see him next football season in Berkeley. He says he doesn't want to come until he can walk off the plane.
Distribute this to all who know him.
Thanks for all your help.
Steve Grealish



(From Country Cole)
Guys,

Please send this out to all of your CAL Football Friends and Party Animals.

The CAL Football Coaches have rented the Warfield in San Francisco for post game party/ dance and concert.
The cost is $20 per person, Tickets are available at Ticket master.

It won't be too often we actually get a bowl game in SF. We should all plan on going.

Thanks for getting the word out.

Country

Cal Bowl Big Show Feat Tightwad Hill Band,Jeff Tedford & Golden Bears
The Warfield
San Francisco, CA
Sat, Dec 27, 2008 09:00 PM

Party with Coach Jeff Tedford, Athletic Director Sandy Barbour,
Cal football players and their parents after the game with great music, drinks, and fun.
"Tightwad Hill" is a rock 'n' roll cover band featuring members of the Cal Football staff and Cal Marching Band.
Come listen to Jeff sing like Barry Manilow.
Don't miss this event. All ages welcome.


(from Larry Shikuma)
Going to the emerald Bowl? Need a tailgate?


Subject: Cal events at the Emerald Bowl in San Francisco


Official Emerald Bowl
Pre-Game Cal Tailgate
The California Golden Bears take on the Miami Hurricanes

Don't miss the event of the weekend—the official Cal tailgate! Register online before Wednesday, Dec 24 at midnight for a discounted price. A limited number of walk-ups will be available at the tailgate entrance at a higher price.

Date of Game: Saturday, December 27, 2008
Game Time: 5 p.m. PST
Tailgate Time: 2:30 p.m. PST
Tailgate Location: Pier 48 at AT&T Park, San Francisco

Enjoy the entire Cal Marching Band, Dance Team, Oski, a pep-talk from Athletic Director Sandy Barbour and more. Register for either beverages only or beverages with food. Special pricing is available for young alumni, students, families and youths.

Details and RSVP

Saturday, Dec 27
Post-game event

Cal Bowl Big Show featuring "Tightwad Hill"
9 p.m. - 2 a.m. | RSVP

Congratulations to Alex Mack
California Alumni Association would like to congratulate Alex Mack on winning the Draddy Trophy as football's top scholar-athlete. More

GO BEARS!
For a full list of Cal Emerald Bowl events, visit alumni.berkeley.edu/athletics .
Friday, Dec 26

Emerald Bowl Pep Rally
11 - 11:30 a.m. | No cost
Yerba Buena Gardens

Emerald Bowl Kick-Off Luncheon
12 - 2 p.m. | RSVP
Westin St. Francis Hotel on Union Square

Cal Spirit Rally
7 p.m. | No cost
San Francisco Marriott Hotel (Cal Team Hotel), Yerba Buena Ballroom

Bears, Billiards & Brews
8 p.m. - 12 a.m. | No cost
Jillian's @ Metreon

Visit calbears.com for more information on the Emerald Bowl or to find official Emerald Bowl merchandise .

A program of the California Alumni Association
1 Alumni House, Berkeley CA 94720-7520 | Phone: (888) CAL.ALUM | Fax: (510) 642.6252
View in web browser | forward to a friend

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"GIVE 'EM THE AXE"

"Give 'em the axe where? Right in the neck, the neck, the neck. Right in the neck. Right in the neck, Who?"

We all kno w who. The Stanford Indians--that's who! This famous college football yell is not politically correct, today. No doubt it's a bit too violent for today's tender-eared youth.

We know the name Indians is frowned upon by the PC crowd--which makes us want to use it even more—but that’s another column.

Saturday is the Big Game. And each year a column with this title appears. Like the Game, itself, it's tradition.

Outsiders think we are so arrogant. No one in the country understands how two unranked schools can refer to their contest as “The Big Game.”
Folks assume that for a game to be “Big” something has to be on the line-- the Conference Championship; the Rose Bowl; or the holiest of holies--The BCS (whatever that means) Championship.

That, of course, is to miss20the essence of college football. Despite the bad press, scandals and under the table activities we read about, first and foremost, college football is about student-athletes competing against one another.

Sure, there are some thugs. And, yes some kids are just passing through on the way to the pros. But for the vast majority of seniors, this is the last football game they will ever play.

So the combination of adrenaline, coupled with the "Ya ain't got nothing to lose" mentality inherent in one's final game, make for some extraordinary moments in sport.

We're not talking about a rivalry where each year Heisman Trophy Candidates rise up to accomplish Herculean feats.

No, from Hart and Patton stopping Skip Face short of the goal line on the last play, and sending the Bears to the Rose Bowl fifty years ago, to Kevin Moen knocking over the Stanford trombone player to win the '82 Big Game with no time left on the clock--the rivalry is rife with "Ordinary Joes" accomplishing extraordinary feats.

It's what makes it great. Is there any finer expression of athleticism than what was once referred to as "The Old College Try?” The Big Game is nothing, if not a show case for "TOCT."

The Beauty of "The Old College Try" is that it is not dependent upon physical prowess alone. Heart, determination, courage, guts and grit are the ingredients of "TOCT.” It does not rely upon superior genes or talent. It is a state of mind--dependent solely upon the depth of one's character and the size of one's heart.
"The Old College Try" is not delivered in a vacuum. It is witnessed by family. One of the finest "families" one could ever be associated with--Old Blues.

As you read these words, I will have disappeared from the earth as you know it. Thursday, I leave the Valley to join the "family" and will not re-surface until Sunday. My days and nights will be filled with other rummies like myself.

There are dozens of reunions throughout the City. Wherever one gathers, it is the best one of the week. For us, The Mother of them all is the Friday Men's lunch. It was started over 30 years ago at the now defunct New Pizza. It was mostly ruggers, and former footballers--boys, Coach Joe Marvin once called "The fellows who fought the Battle of Berkeley back in the 60's". We know what he meant.

That's when our school yell went from "Roll on you Bears" to "Ashes to ashes/Dust to dust/We hate to go on strike/But we must, we must!"

No parents wanted their kids to come to Cal back then. We were considered a bunch of Commie, Pinko, Weirdoes. It’s a wonder football survived.

My friend defined the lunch with this classic line: "No invitations. That means no jerks. Just good=2 0guys inviting good guys".
We gather to re-tell the same old, stories--laugh way too loud--and return to the halcyon days of yore when everything was possible, and no one could best us--neither footballer nor female.

(In truth, we lost way more times than we won--in both areas--but who's counting). At least we gave it "The Old College Try."

Ours is a friendship held together over the years--not through our triumphs, but through our failures. For that's where the laughs are. In the screw ups. In the errors in judgment. In the vain attempts to be more than we were.

Had we been suave. Had we been cool. Had we succeeded each time--in class--on the field--with the co-eds-- we'd have little to talk about. And nothing to laugh about.

When the sentence begins with "How 'bout the time......." you can be assured it has nothing to do with a triumph.

Mostly it has to do with some humiliating failure which the PCer's would consider a lowering of self-esteem--and which we consider too funny for words.

It is good that we are off by ourselves. The world would never approve of our past shenanigans. It certainly wouldn't approve of the way we laugh about them now. We’d never pass Obama’s background checks.

We were not nice boys. On the other hand, we were just that--boys. Doing things that boys do, and grown men can look back upon and laugh at. Maybe it's a guy thing. My kids don't believe me, but no truer words were ever spoken than when we tell them at their moments of failure, "Don't worry. We'll laugh about this later." If only they knew that it's not succeeding that matters. Giving it the "Old College Try" does. GO BEARS. GIVE' EM THE AXE1




Much sadness during this week of joy. For a great article on Pete Newell and his passing on Monday read Bruce Jenkins, A Man Who Was A Legend Even to Other Legends

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/18/SPGM1468HJ.DTL




Alas, we lost another Giant with the passing of John Erby. Here's a note "Jeans" sent me on Coach Erby. He was a true American hero and a great man.

John Erby, veterans advocate, dies
He won honors in Vietnam War
By Rebecca Goodman • rgoodman@enquirer.com • November 14, 2008




WEST CHESTER TWP - John W. Erby lost part of his right leg in Vietnam. He came home with a prosthesis and a new outlook on life.


"I realized then that no matter how bad you think you have it, there's someone not far away who has it so much worse," Mr. Erby told The Enquirer in 2005. "So I figured, 'Stop feeling sorry for yourself. Get up and go help someone. That'll make you feel better.' That's been my philosophy."

Mr. Erby spent the rest of his life advocating for veterans and teaching schoolchildren to be good citizens.

He was adjutant of Chapter 156 of the Military Order of the Purple Heart and president of Chapter 10 of the Vietnam Veterans of America. He served on the governor's Office of Veterans Affairs Advisory Committee and was active with JROTC and ROTC programs. In 2005 he was inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame.

Mr. Erby, 68, died unexpectedly in his sleep Sunday at his home in West Chester Township.

He was a 27-year-old first lieutenant and a platoon leader with the 25th Army Infantry Division in Vietnam in 1968 when he came under mortar fire in the Battle for Fire Support Base Burt. He received two Purple Hearts and the Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with palm, awarded by the South Vietnamese government for heroic deeds while fighting the enemy.

After the war, Mr. Erby was hired to be the assistant line coach at the University of California, Berkeley, where he had played football and received a bachelor's degree in criminology. He became the first African-American football coach in the PAC-8 conference. He left the job in 1972 and went to work for Levi Strauss, retiring in 1997.

Mr. Erby enjoyed taking students to see the traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. He also wrote a program called "Veterans in the Classroom" that told the story of sacrifices made by veterans of the Vietnam War. He presented it at schools in Greater Cincinnati. He also taught flag folding and etiquette.

A native of Rosston, Ark., he was born on May 7, 1940, to Mary T. Harvey and John Erby. He was raised in Fresno, Calif., by his grandparents Willie and Ida Harvey.

Mr. Erby enjoyed listening to jazz, reading mystery novels, rooting for the Chicago Bears, golfing and cooking.

Survivors include his wife of 39 years, Delores Erby; two daughters, Kimberly G. and Shannon N. Erby, both of California; five brothers, Terrell and Bruce Thomas, Bill Self and Dolphus Trotter and Bill Gray; and four sisters, Wilma Francis, Gwen Williams, Bennie Lee and Chrystal Headlam.

Visitation is 10 a.m. today followed by the funeral at noon at Hodapp Funeral Home, 8815 Cincinnati-Columbus Road (U.S. 42) in West Chester Township. Mr. Erby's remains were cremated.

Memorial gifts are suggested to Joseph House Home for Homeless Vets, 1522 Republic St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 10, 8418 Reading Road, Cincinnati, OH 45215; or the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Department of Ohio, 35 E. Chestnut St., Suite 408, Columbus, OH 43215.



And don't forget to Vote for Alex Mack. You can do it once a day at this link:

http://football.seniorclassaward.com/10755/playercard.aspx

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Good Time on the Way to A Good Time

So many tailgates, so little time. Actually, the line is Bobby Tuck's. So apropos. He said it at the UCLA game a couple weeks back.

What a day that was. The glorious weather defined it to a tee. Before the game, The brotherhood gathered (no, they can only be identified on pain of death, or having a blind date with a girl from Stanford) passed around the correct inside info. It would be Riley.


What a ways we've come. For many of us, Cal vs. UCLA means having to face Mecca in hopes of an upset. That Saturday it was reversed. We were the 17 point favorites and deserving of the honor.


How Tedford has changed things.


The 59 Rose Bowl team was honored for the 50th anniversary of that '58 season. As a 10 year old, I saw every home game that year and watched the Rose Bowl, live, on black and white TV. After Hart and Patton Stopped Skip Face's two point conversion attempt in the Big Game to put us in the Rose Bowl, Joe Kapp signed my program and gave me his Chin Strap. At Ten, that was about as good as it got. (After Saturday that may be the best it's been in 50 years).


Today, the fumble at the goal line in Pasadena would have been reversed as Hart clearly crossed the plain, but Iowa, behind Randy Duncan probably would have won anyway. Funny how Cal Fans fixate on "What-could-have-beens.

What a fun team that was. The late Ron Wheatcroft was my hero. I would wear #81 for the rest of my life, until I arrived at Cal some 8 years later. Freshman coach Truck Cullom said "No exceptions." Numbers were handed out by positions (alphabetically). Being a "W", I was saddled with #89 that Freshman season, and being a Green Weeney (Sout team red-shirt), #47 the following year. Had I only had #81 (Karma) I would have won the Heisman for sure. I tried to tell them.


Last week, it was a monsoon and the opportunistic Bear defense flexed its muscle and led us to a fine win in weather which many feared would give the Ducks an advantage.

Tried to avoid the rain by standing under the trees, until I realized there weren't any.

Now we were back in the top 25 and playing for a Rose Bowl spot in November. Little did we know as we prepared for the Road Trip to SC that the "What-could-have-beens" would raise their ugly heads again. But I'm ahead of myself.
We were 22 point underdogs to SC. How did that happen?

Rooting for the Bears against SC was like pulling for MCain against Obama. In order to win, each and every battle ground state was going to have to go our way.

Despite our thoughts, the grown ups in Vegas thought the odds were long. Troubling.

Our den mother, Linda, had arranged for a group of us to stay at the Fairmontin Newport. A bus would drive us to SC.

We met with other Bear fans for drinks at The Beach Comber, an isolated bar on the beach in Chrystal Bay State Park. We were ordered not to miss the 4:30 sunset. Not wanting to arouse Linda's ire by being late, Stoney and Carlisle managed to get there by 1:30. Whew. What to do for three hours until the sun sets? Hmmmmmmmmmm.

We caught up with them and other fans around 4. We hashed and rehashed and hashed again all the possibilities--who would play, whether we should pass or run--what had to happen for us to get to the Rose Bowl, and lastly, why in the premiere soccer State in the Union, and belonging to a University dedicated to attracting "under-represented minorities", we can't recruit a Latino (or foreign born) soccer player who can kick off into the end zone.

It's hard for those of us raised in Northern California to believe that real people actually live, swim, run and dine on a beach as a part of their everyday lives. To us it's Fantasy Land.

Once the sun set ,dinner was ordered and we once again repeated everything we'd said over margaritas before dinner.

Eight am Saturday morning found us jogging (ok waddling) from the Newport Pier to the Balboa Pier. The air was fresh, the setting un-real. During the run we talked a little Cal football.

Now it was time for Brunch at Mutt Lynch's and a (Larry Blake's Ratskeller sized) schooner of beer. I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen after 10 o'clock.

Flat screened TV's on every wall played the nation's games. The omelets were outstanding, and the waitresses dressed as though Hooters was for sissies. "Having a good time on the way to a good time," opined Stoney. I'm not sure what the Jesuits concept of Heaven is, but this was pretty close.

The excitement building up to kick off was electric.

Twenty-four of us piled into a van (once it would have been a Volkswagon--now we are old and so tres chic, that we get individual seats) and headed to a Macdonald's just outside the stadium--not for the happy meal-but to park.

Before arriving at our designated tailgate, we walked around and noted that every SUV had a flat screen TV in the back. In fact the only thing "flat" in L.A. appeared to be the screened TV's.

Cal folk in L.A. Once again, the heirs of Eldridge Cleaver meet the heirs of Elder Cleavage.

The Game? First, who saw it in the seats SC gives us? Not only are they deep behind the endzone, they are off in the corner facing east, so one has to turn at an angle just to watch the game, where the nearest part of the endzone is 60 yards away. It is so bush league.

One would think the Chancellor's could get together and solve that one. It's way too disrespectful (The year with Rogers on the 9 yard line with 1:32 to go, we were all down there in that end zone where visiting teams usually sit). Perhaps they thought that was way to fair.

(We cheated and traded a couple Franklins to sit on the 50). We hadn't come all this way to only estimate what was going on between the lines.

Our D played its heart out. Probably, the better team won. That being said, their first touch was a drop in the endzone. Are we whiners or do a disproportionate amount of calls go against us? Yes, they were flagged more, but the crucial ones?

Here's a $50 tip for free. When a play is anywhere close in the endzone for a Touch (a foot in bounds, crossing the plain, juggled ball etc.) and the coach doesn't want to waste a time out on a challenge, designate someone (right defensive end, for example) to jump off sides as they line up for the hurried up PAT. The penalty is only half the distance, and they're gonna kick it anyway. That would give a coach (and the boys upstairs) time to look at replays which might make a challenge wise. Of course, one wouldn't do that late in the game where a two point conversion would make a difference.

Secondly, the lineman downfield on our TD pass. Of course, we couldn't see it from the stands, but on my TIVO, the stadium announcers did a good job. NOT ONE interior lineman was beyond the line of scrimmage. The best the refs could come up with was to say that Ross, the inside receiver, was on the line of scrimmage (making him ineligible), however, the ball is on the 27 and he has his foot behind the 28-Boetang (the outside guy) is on the 27. BOGUS, BUSH LEAGUE CALL.

10 to 10 is an entirely different ball game-but we always think that.

We were going with Alex Mack as our only first string O lineman. Their defensive speed was just too much for us. The O line, usually so dominant just couldn't open any holes, and we couldn't get to the outside. Maualuga can play.

(Speaking of Mack, my daughter says we should go to this link and vote once a day to help him win a senior class football award).

http://football.seniorclassaward.com/10755/playercard.aspx

Secondly, their DB's make statements when they hit. Mays is all world. All too often, our DB's dive for the runner's legs and (no sense naming names) some guys missed some big time tackles. Maybe we're just not big enough to be that physical. But they took us to school in that area.

Jahvid Best appears to be hampered somewhat. That explosive burst as he pulls away from guys (even on short gains) doesn't quite seem to be there-at least when viewed from the stands.

At game's end SC had the ball deep in our territory (as we had rightly eschewed a punt and gone for it on 4th down). Pete Carrol didn't try to pass for a score-but he didn't take a knee either.

It was a grey area, but for those of us who were in the stands in New York when Joe Pisarchcek, handed off with just seconds left, and the Eagles scooped up the fumble for a winning score, one has to wonder why he was running it rather than playing it safe. BCS, anyone?

Anyway, it was a quiet ride back to Newport Beach where we hit the hotel bar and saw the horrid replay's we hadn't seen in the stands. We hashed and rehashed and hashed again all the possibilities.

Then we hit the sack and reconnoitered the following morning for 8am Mass (ok, for brunch at Mutt Lynch's) down at the beach. Somehow the music didn't seem as good. The women didn't look as pretty. And the food wasn't like the morning before when "we were having a good time on the way to a good time."

We hashed and rehashed and hashed again all the possibilities. Then drove to the airport to come home and watch the replays and hash and rehash all the possibilities.

The only thing good about all those margin calls and the economic meltdown is that it leaves time for important stuff-like hashing, rehashing and hashing all over again what might have been. If you have a spare one, please fed ex it to me. I need to get a life

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren '70

Friday, October 24, 2008

From Detox to Botox

Whoever said, “Never go to bed angry,” never pulled for the Bears. It is irrational but inevitable.

As I collect my thoughts here at “Duffy’s” (a famous detox center in Calistoga), I’m trying to master the 13 Step Program. Bill Wilson’s original 12 step program had to be expanded to 13 —just for Bear fans.

You know step #1. “We admit we are powerless over Cal—that our lives have become unmanageable.

The second step, we are all familiar with. “We believed that a Power greater than ourselves (beer at tailgates) could restore us to sanity.”

I could recite the next 11 steps, but any Cal Fan knows them by heart. As for #8, “Making a list of all persons we have harmed, and become willing to make amends to them all….” I publically apologize to my wife (and driving her upstairs to do her crossword puzzle in peace), for shouting more than once “Just catch the damn ball!”

Take it from an old slow white guy—of all the ingredients that go into making a play a success, blocking, timing, throwing, deception—the easiest of them all is catching the rock. That receivers or db’s stretch one hand up and tip a ball (thinking they can bring it down and catch it—is one of the plagues of the modern game.

Those of us who grew up on Raymond Berry, Lance Allworth, Fred Belitnikoff, even the sainted Jerry Rice, cringe every time we watch an otherwise outstanding athlete, reach one paw out thinking they will make a circus catch. Bucky Pope, the Cawtaba Claw, could do it and perhaps a few others in today’s modern game (Moss and Owens unfortunately come to mind), but for most it can’t be done.

The consequences, as we saw Saturday night in the desert, are catastrophic. Tipping the ball into the air resulted in what (by all laws of physics) it is intended to do—keeping the ball afloat, longer, before it hits the ground. Alas, that means others have a chance to catch it as well.

And when a loan receiver is in a defensive secondary—guess what? There are more of them than of you. It’s why it turned into another interception. (Alas, in one of life’s great ironies, we missed our one opportunity to return the favor in the first half, and it could have put the game away).

When we were kids the law was simple: If you can’t catch it with two hands—don’t touch it. The tipped pass, interception was a killer. Our dropped tip pass interception opportunity, a back breaker.

Saturday night I counted a legitimate 11 dropped passes. Oh sure, some would have been great catches, but not one of the 11 could not have been caught.

So before one goes after Riley or Longshore, he ought to take that into consideration. Yes, the passes could have been a bit better, but at this level catches have to be made.

Remember Swan and Bradshaw in the Miami Super Bowl against Dallas? It turned into a route, but two super catches in the End zone by Swan made all the difference. No one noticed what a different game it might have been had he not leapt, twisted, and cradled the ball—with two hands, of course.

Give Arizona its due. Their secondary is made up of grown ups. They could hit and they could defend.

It makes one wonder why we refuse to run the ball a second time if we don’t make a minimum of five yards on first. Look at the numbers. We rarely have third and short. If we run on first down, and don’t make five yards we always (yes always--with one exception Sat night) pass on second down. If it’s complete we get the first. If not, it’s third and long. If we gain 7or 8 on first, yes we will run on 2nd.

This has been a trend over the years, and clearly opposing defensive coaches are on to it.

One could count on one hand the times we have run three times in a row in any one game, ever—unless we were attempting to use up time.

So much for the arm chair quarterbacking.

Best did not play in the 4th so one assumes he reinjured that arm. That must be awfully painful. Speaking of injuries, because of injuries to defensive linemen Rulon Davis and Kendrick Payne and a limited Tyson Alualu, the Bears were forced to burn the redshirt year of freshman Trevor Guyton on Saturday. He looks like he’s going to be a player, but there is no doubt that depth is affecting us—as it is all teams—look at UCLA this season.

Tomorrow is UCLA. We’re favored by 17. They beat Stanford, who beat Arizona. Go figure.

By any measurement, we are almost sure to have a successful season—one we would have died for back in the 90’s before Tedford got here. The Rose Bowl is still conceivable—BCS unlikely.

Anyway, if we can’t iron out the wrinkles, there’s always Botox—-we’ve already got Detox.

Like the addicts that we are, we just have to try to handle this one Saturday at a time. Fear of the D.T.’s keeps us addicted and we set ourselves up for punishment week after week. We can’t give it up. We should probably all avoid Fridays, for their nearness to Saturday’s intoxicates us with the temptation to head on down to Strawberry Canyon on Saturdays where hope beats eternal—-but disappointment hides behind every tree.

Hey! Come to think of it, there are no trees. Maybe tomorrow will be different! Here’s hoping.

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren ‘70

Thursday, October 09, 2008

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS

Just received my first phone call of the week that wasn’t a margin call. And this is Thursday.

Looks like the same task force which was assigned to bail out the Bears after the tragic loss to Oregon St. last year is in charge of bailing out the Government this year.

Stocks are a bit like the Bears. If we get to 7 should we sell?

After Saturday’s defeat of a game ASU team, one has to like the Bears chances for this year. We have a lot of speed and a lot of talent—especially on defense. (I seem to remember Tedford saying we had less talent but more chemistry—but it appears some talent is there).

Are we an elite top ten team? Only time will tell. But we are good—at least we have been better, by a lot, than anyone we’ve played ( I know we lost to Maryland, but if you were choosing up sides, you’d chose us). In time, I think the shutting down of that Michigan offense will look really huge—of course I thought Maryland must be a good team because they beat us, then they went and lost another (after rising to 27 in the rankings) to some Podunk team, so who knows.

Saturday was a day any Cal fan could relate to. I woke up early, full of eager anticipation. The light was like the Bears—golden. It was sunny in St. Helena—cloudy at game time down in Berkeley.

There’s nothing like football in the fall, especially when the sun is out and the game is at 12:30.

That is our natural rhythm. For an entire century, Cal fans could wake up on a Saturday morning in the fall and know that at 12:30 or one o’clock, they could be in Strawberry Canyon and view college football in perhaps the most picturesque venue in the country.

There was a time when Saturday morning’s meant gin fizz parties and then walks to the Stadium, up through the Blind School, past the fraternities and sororities—dodging footballs tossed in the streets and enduring the hoots and hollers of drunken fraternity boys as they pea cocked around in front of the co-eds.

The hustle and bustle of game day generated an excitement all its own. You could count on it. Fall Saturdays were like Levis, comfortable—always there—always dependable.

Alas, we got our wish. Gladstone messed with our heads and hired Tedford. Sandy insured we'd keep him--and that changed everything. Suddenly, we got good.

Except we soon learned, that in order to compete with the Big Boys we had to act like the Big Boys (that’s code for spend money the way the SC’s, Nebraska’s, Tennessee’s and Miami’s do). And there’s only one place to get that kind of money: The dreaded one-eyed Moloch, TV.

Once one sells her soul to the device which started when that English bloke, Edwin Belin first patented the transmission of photographs via wires, one is on Madison Ave. time, not his own or his school’s. Men in grey flannel suits call the shots—and Universities across the land dance to their tune. The dollars are too big to do otherwise.

Ergo: we all receive tickets in the mail with the ubiquitous TBA stamped where 12:30pm once went. Kick off times are as erratic as a politicians promises. They can change four or five times before they are put into play. Sometimes, even game day changes—and we take it. We have no choice.

That’s how we end up having one season with Big Game after Thanksgiving, and another with three games on, a bye, two games on, another bye—six games on—a break for thanksgiving—and finally the end of the season against Stan……no Washington. Go Figure!

Madison Ave. owns us. But as Dr. Laura says, “You chose him honey. Now ya gotta stay with him for the sake of the kiddoes.”

Bye’s have their advantages—maybe Best (due we dare refer to this week as “Best’s Bye”--will be able to play on two weeks rest (having once dislocated my knee on a golf course—don’t ask—I would tend to doubt it, but we can be hopeful).

Anyway, the kick off time for ASU was “Old School.” I called Stoney to see what time the tailgate would begin. “Hey, 9:30 at the latest. This is an important Game!”

He was right of course. We wouldn’t be upholding our end if we waited until 10am to drink beer. Everyone’s got to sacrifice for the sake of the team.

The drive down to Cal was “Old School” as well. Fall in the Napa Valley is post card perfect.

Stopped by “The Boys” tailgate in Bowles hall parking lot (everyone is dislocated thanks to Ayr, Burlap, Dumpster Muffin and the grandstanding Mayor of Berkely (an ex-bear, to boot).

One of the brotherhood (I could tell you his name but then I’d have to kill you) said the decision had been made—Longshore. We tossed it back and forth (for some unknown reason coach Tedford never calls us to ask our advice), and the consensus was that Riley can make plays—is a winner, a gamer and perhaps has the brighter future, but his past performances had been inconsistent, so Longshore deserves a shot. He does throw a pretty ball. However, it’s like making a pass at a costumed gal at a Halloween party in San Francisco. You many connect—-just not necessarily with whom you intended.

When I walked on the field with the Sons of California (low turnout due to the weather I guess), to let the team run out between us, I mentioned that I’d heard Nate was going to start. They all told me that the announcer had already announced Riley—and that as usual I didn’t know diddley-squat.

When #6 took the field after the kick off, I held my tongue. (Little did they know that the “Brotherhood” still operates even after the purge of the 60’s. In every massacre there’s always at least one survivor).

This was a game which demonstrated that Tedford is building a program, not just an occasional good football team.

Longshore played well. The second half was hum drum, but the defense bailed us out. Actually, Bryan Anger bailed us out with an unbelievable 71 yard punt down to the four yard line with four minutes to go. The dreaded TD followed by an on-side kick, seemed a bit more distant. When he punts, the ball appears to go above the rim of the stadium.

Vareen filled in admirablely for Best getting almost 100 yards. Looks like injuries on the O line are preventing us from breaking out the way we will towards the end of the year, should Tepper and others return.

The D was superlative. (We can’t forget that the Wildcats were picked 15th in the pre-season. As an aside, the coaches’ poll had Michigan St. at 24 when we beat them).

The DB’s are playing some ball. #26 Hagan looks like a future star. #17 Conte comes in and shuts ‘em down (even got a pick on a beautiful break to the ball) #11 Catthouse (like the old Indian joke, “Why do you ask, two dogs barking,” was he named…..oh never mind)---played a tough safety and got a pick, The ubiquitous #5 Syd’quan Thompson will play on Sundays.

The LB’s are living up to their pre season billing. Follet is always around the ball. The only thing we lack are some Ronnie Lott type sticks. They could come.
Cameron Jordan had two sacks, forced a fumble and three tackles for losses. He was Pac 10 Defensive player of the week. Anger was special teams player (7 punts—47.4 yd/punt).

Said it before—will say it again—-my guess is that we have more good football players than ever before. (Last year a scout for the Eagles took notes on 17 players. I don’t know how many are still here, and maybe we have fewer pro prospects, but we have what appears to be more good college players than ever before. Again, time will tell.

But for a team with untested receivers, an unresolved qb situation, and injuries to our best back (Best) top tackle (Tepper) and top defensive end (Roulon Davis) we ain’t too bad. Some folks are stepping up, and that kind of depth has not been seen in our lifetime—maybe.

On the other hand, as the Sty said, "Arizona has "trap" written all over it."k Hopefully, he was talking about his golf game.




Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren ‘70
www.jeffwarren.com/

Monday, September 29, 2008

A CAL FAN'T NOTES/COLORADO STATE

Why we go to Cal games:

1). At Stoney’s tailgate John Siamas(Si) pulls me aside to inform me that Oregon St Freshman, Jacquizz Rodgers, who led the upset of USC on Thursday night, should get a trophy for most Scrabble points in a first name. “It’s the Double Z that clinched it,” Si whispers. What? Syd’Quan Thomson’s chopped liver?

2.) Each time Roulon Jones makes a stop, Kingwell Tuck leads a cheer up in CC, Ruuuuu Lonnnnn…..you Bears….. Ruuuuuuuu Lonnnnnnnnnn, you Bears.” (In another “Bears only” tragedy, time runs out in the half, players run off the field, officials review the last play and decide to put one second on the clock, Cal defense comes back on the field and stuffs the Rams for a loss, but Davis gets hurt and is out for 2 months). He will be missed—as he was last year.

3.) A lost, distinguished looking gentleman (that’s code for even older than I am) struggles up the hill at Bowles Hall to Buddy and the group’s tailgate and says, “Is that you Jeff? I’m looking for (former tackle) Ernie Voight.” Turns out to be Coach Ray Willsey. He’s out for a Pappy’s Boys (soon to be Pappy’s Boy) function.

Ray was amazing. He was our coach in the 60’s when the Cal school yell went from “Rollllllllllllllllllll on you Bears….” To “Ashes to Ashes/Dust to Dust/ We hate to shut it down/But we must we must.”

Imagine what it was like trying to recruit a kid to Cal in the late 60’s. Parents just wouldn’t let their kids come--Too many commie, pinko, wierdos. Today’s posers, Zachery Running Wolf (no doubt on a Ward Churchill scholarship), and Dumpster Muffin, despite her flirtations with Mayor Tom, couldn’t hold a Garf Wilson candle, to the crazies we dealt with daily, back in the day. As Ackie boy said years ago, “There’d be no football at the University of California if it weren’t for Ray Wilsey.”

We reminisced how there was a time when second string qb’s (My memory’s hazy, but I recall #2 QB’s-- Gabe Arriaga, Gus Gianulias, Larry Balliet, Jim, Hunt, and Jerry Walters,all getting a chance to start on defense while also being the second best QB on the team.

In irony of ironies, Ray (who was the first coach to truly integrate the Cal football team in 1967) kept with the tradition and started Bernie Keels (a qb from South Carolina) as a defensive safety. With 1:32 left in the SC game, he fumbled a punt, and SC kicked the winning field goal.
Hey. It happens.

But what was worse was a kid took the mic from the cheer leaders after the game and ranted and raved that it was racism which prevented Bernie from being the starting qb, and we’d have won were he #1. A nice young kid, Bernie was actually #3 or #4 in ability that year, and was given every opportunity to start. How Ray was able to take the abuse back then, is beyond me. He had his critics, but he did so much and got such little credit.

Of course an actual football game broke out in the middle of all these reminisces over beers in the various parking lots (does anyone in the country have worse tailgating facilities than we do these days?) and, as Art Arlett used to opine over the loud speaker, “It was a great day for California.”

Special teams dominated (which is so often the case when you just have more athletes than the other squad). Tedford has really increased the numbers of excellent athletes now wearing the blue and gold.

Speaking of which our unis were blue on blue this week after wearing Gold tops and Blue pants in the opener, against MSU. It was white on White on the Road against WSU, and White on Yellow back east against Maryland. Who’s our fashion consultant? Gold swooshes are all the rage. Always a hint of color. With changes each week can the bumble bee stripes be far behind?

Speaking of which, nice to see Curley named to the Bay Area Hall of Fame. (If you thought the train trip to Maryland was an ugly story, don’t ask about the 43 hr bus ride I took from NY to Dallas for Morton’s wedding back in the ‘70’s). Now that was an adventure. I think I still have the can of “Billy Beer.”

Syd’quan Thomson (another competitor for the all Scrabble squad), is dominating. His punt return for a TD showed how well he sees the field. With three pics so far, he’ll be playing on Sunday’s next year.

Riley’s a gamer and can scramble, but something’s just a hair off. Longshore came in and showed well, though with a 28-0 lead there was no pressure.

We’ve got ASU at home on Saturday and are 121/2 point favorites. How scary is that?
Maryland and Michegan St. are knocking on the door of the top 25. Cal is a good team. How good, is tough to tell.

Jahvid’s dislocated elbow is not likely to heal as fast as they’d like. He’s quite a kid.

In a touching gesture the Bears wore BB on the backs of their helmets for Bob Briggs (Cal Band's legendary director). There was a moment of silence as we all said good bye to one of the greats.

On the issue of travel and cement legs (not criticizing—just think some grad student ought to really look into it), Bob sent me this:


Jeffrey,

I just did some checking and and found out from an L.A. Times article, dated August 28, 2008, that the Trojan's charter arrived Thursday evening in Charlottesville. There's no doubt in my mind that if what the Bears did was truly the way to go, then SC would have done it too.
I enjoyed your trip description.
Go Bears!!!

Bob



Great people. Great stories. Great wit. Great weather. Great Stadium. Great Day. Topped off by great football.

We’ve got more than we ever deserved.

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren ‘70
www.jeffwarren.com


Sons of California Reunion Bar-b-que is Saturday before the ASU game at 10am.

Matt's Golf Tourney is Friday at Tilden. RSVP if you haven't already.

Here's an article on the game from a real writer

http://www.contracostatimes.com/colleges/ci_10585956

Thursday, September 18, 2008

TRAIN LAND TO TERP LAND

It's such a "Boola Boola" thing. Taking the train to an away game. I could see myself--raccoon coat, Cal pennant on a stick, Freshman beanie on my pate, and a hip flask filled with scotch.

Wanting to appear mature, I decided I didn't need the coat, pennant or Beanie. Three out of four ain't bad.

As an eighth grader I'd been bitten by Steinbeck's Travels with Charlie. Like Simon and Garfunkel I wanted to look for America, and Am Trak--from beautiful downtown Emeryville (would I have time for a couple of hands at the Key Club?) to Union Station in D.C. was just the ticket. Besides isn't "Let's take the train," man code for "Bloodies for breakfast--no questions asked?"

Little did I realize that most train riders were more trans-fat than trans-continental.

The Goobs would fly to New York join our two daughters for a girlie, girlie girl week, while Dadeo counted corn stalks in Iowa.

It would be 69 hours of bliss, starting at 8:55 am Tuesday and ending at 1pm on Friday--almost in time to catch Lefty Stern and Sandy Barbour's V.I.P tour of Annapolis. Each leg of the trip, I could put down my book and fantasize about the glorious Bear victory, and how many places we would move up in the rankings.

Would Best be on the Heisman Watch after Saturday? Would Riley have a breakout game? Would Alex Mack add a few pancakes to his collection? None of that foolish family or business stuff could take my mind off the Bears for four straight days. Ah….Heaven!

"Not so fast Kowalski!"

As the Goobs said to eldest daughter Casey upon arriving in the Big Apple, "Guess what happened to Dad?"

The Casers would reply without batting an eye, "He forgot his phone."

"How did you know that?"

"Because it is the single most important thing he needed to take with him."

Damn kids.

As we pulled out of Emeryville, I patted my pocket for my phone. Oh, I found the Altoids in the metal box-about the same shape-but no phone. After ripping everything apart, I sank to my knees and cried dried tears which wouldn't come. With dumb luck, the phone was in my car. With my luck, it was on the bench in the station.

I had to keep in touch with the office, confirm hotels and car rentals--to say nothing of tracking down Linda, Mary, Buz, Ras and the bunch at errant tailgates in an unknown land.

Little did I know that the same Gods who were watching over me would have "Bear Duty" come Saturday--but I'm ahead of myself.

I was on a big time Bucket List Adventure. Nothing could wreck this trip, even though I deserved to be shot. The Zephyr to Chicago and Capitol Limited to D.C. was an opportunity I couldn't afford to pass up.

Well, not exactly. With a return flight at $139, and a deluxe sleeper (one with a shower and private toilet) at just over two grand, one could definitely afford to pass it up.

Judging by the size of our sleeper, that came to about $500 per square foot, but who's counting? My grammar school pal, Johnny Drews joined me, so splitting the cost made it fairly reasonable. Plus they threw in what they called "meals."

I report. You decide.

Of course they didn't tell us that the shower and the toilet were in the same water-proof stall. This may be the age of multi-tasking, but I'm not sure this is what we had in mind.

Oh well. At least we could start out as two happy guys and arrive in D.C. as one happy couple.

I won't bore you with the details (if you have no life, go to www.jeffwarren.com/ and go to Weekly St. Helena Star Column "ALLL ABOARD!!! for the gory details of the first half of the trip)

Despite all the glories of this fabulous trip, whatever your politics; whatever your opinion of Government sponsored Health Care, ride the government subsidized Amtrak before you cast your vote. But I digress.

Met up with the Cal group around midnight, Friday in the Hotel Bar. We were only 13 hours late. Not sure they waited for me before having a drink.


Don't ask why we were that late. Suffice it to say, Accurate information on Amtrak is an oxymoron. Amtrak is a lot like China. What they tell you, and what is true don't necessarily jive. The words "customer" and "service" are never to be found in the same sentence. As Churchill said, "Civil Servants are neither."

(My favorite was when the elderly lady in front of me asked where she should sit in the dining car. The porter pointed to a place and yelled, right here. She said "Are you pointing?" He interrupted and yelled back, "Yes, I am. Are you deaf?" She replied, politely, "No I'm blind." She had the red tipped cane, but apparently was making it difficult on the union workers).

Come Saturday morning the adrenalin was flowing. We met the Stretch family for a tailgate before the game.

The Stadium was withing walking distance. The weather oppressively hot.

The Stadium was packed. Unlike at SC, our seats were actually in the Stadium-down around the 10.

We (the team) were flat. For three quarters they pushed us around on offense and defense. Receivers had difficulty getting separation. Riley was not on (though I have to be nice as he told my daughter, a senior at Cal, her father was "Kick ass" or was it "Bad ass") for taking the train. I didn't like the language, but liked the compliment.

Holes were not opened up. Their QB threw well, and we couldn't get pressure.

Seeing Sandy in the Hotel afterwards, I asked what the NCAA rule was regarding when a team can leave town before a home game. She said 48 hours and said they did everything right and the kids had been working on an Eastern "Schedule" all weak--that they had an 8pm curfew the night before.

I'm no expert. Let's face it. SC came in and slaughtered Virginia a couple of weeks ago. Clearly teams have flown east and won.

But some grad student ought to look it up and do some analysis.

It appeared our kids had no legs. Someone should ask the kids--or ask the pros--or ask anyone who has made these trips (Tennessee vs. UCLA comes to mind this year), to see how travel affects play.

I have no idea what the reality is. I didnt' travel. I do remember Hawley talking about "cement legs" on the road. Was that due to travel-jet lag?

Also, and I know this is above my pay scale, the traveling squad lifted weights Friday morning.

My kid,JJ, a walk on at Notre Dame under Willingham, said walk ons and redshirts lifted on Friday--actually it was their toughest day, but the travel squad did not. Doesn't mean they're right. Just means there are different approaches.

Is it fair to look into whether lifing on Friday is a good idea or not?

We all know about adrenalin. We know about the hypothalamus and the fight or flight response. We know about serotonin, dopamine, and epinephron.

From Wikipedia: Epinephrine is a "fight or flight" hormone, and plays a central role in the short-term stress reaction. It is released from the adrenal glands when danger threatens or in an emergency. Such triggers may be threatening, exciting, or environmental stressor conditions such as high noise levels, or bright light.

Point is, as a kid I can recall barely clearing the uprights when kicking extra points in practice. On Friday nights, the ball not only went over the uprights, it went across the street and into the house on the other side of the street.

Epinephrine is what allows old ladies to lift cars off kids--you've all read about it.

Alas, it doesn't last. It's about quick bursts. The question (and I assume they've studied this and I've got my head up my…..) is does lifting on Friday use up that stored nervous energy, a bi-product of epinephrine, dopamine, serotonin, etc which begins to form some 48 hours before actual game time?

It's important that kids stay in class, but for one game a year, on the east coast, should we go back 48 hours early, instead of arriving at 4pm for a 12 o'clock game the next day?

My question was not well received.

Perhaps it has nothing to do with it. I'm surely no expert. But why not research it closely and make a decision based on those facts? If we want to be big time, shouldn't we be experts in this area?

Maybe they had just been reading the press clippings from the week before. But they are much more athletic than Maryland.

They fought back hard--Riley eventually had over 400 yards, and the receivers made some great catches. However, it was against a pre-vent defense, so that has to be taken into consideration.

My guess, is that this is a good team. One that can beat SC-certainly one that can play with them.

`Lastly, I'm a Riley guy. I think he's a gamer, I know he's a winner, and he should be the starter. But Saturday was not his day (despite his 4th quarter stats). No prob. Were I running the world, I'd have put in the next guy and give him a shot. (On the other hand, I can't even remember a cell phone, so consider the source).

I come from a time when Football was considered a daily competition--with no job secure, no matter what. Building confidence is important. But there are lots of ways to do that.

We are supposed to be preparing these kids for life after college. In the job world, it's simple: Don't make your sales quotas, and your territory goes to someone else. Don't get enough new business, they hire someone who will.

Tedford is the man. He knows what he's doing. He brought us to where we are. We shouldn't second guess. He has earned a lot of latitude. We should let him know we're backing him whomever he plays--or if he plays both.

He should know that he has our support no matter who he plays or what he decides. Dumpster Muffin may differ with this opinion. Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates (a former Bear) doesn't care what the bears do as long as they go left.

This is a good team. We are going to have a fun season. No doubt we will win some games we should lose and verse visa (which is vice versa, vice versa).

Anyway, it's great to be a Bear and be back in my own bed. And my bad luck, my phone was in the car--so I have to continue working--making and returning calls.

Go bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren '70

Friday, September 12, 2008

A Nation of Laws, not Men

Turn on any sports show this week and all the chatter will be about young the Univeristy of Washington Quarterback tossing the ball in jubilation after scoring a last second touchdown. With two seconds to go, Jake Locker crossed the goal line and brought the score to 27, 28. A simple extra point ties it and sends this game into overtime.

Let the record reflect: Young Locker was not taunting the opposition. He was not showing off. He did not throw or kick the ball into the stands. He simply threw it down over his back shoulder in a show of unadulterated joy.

By all accounts this boy is the poster child for "Student Athlete." His reputation is that he's modest, kind, studious and a leader of men. Not your typical flashy show off which stains so much of sports, today.

Apparently, the refs didn't read his resume. He was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.

After the penalty, the ensuing extra point attempt was blocked. BYU won.

The loss is being pinned on the officials for their interpretation of a rule, instituted this year, to curb unsportsmanlike displays of exuberance.

In all the media, the mantra is the same: The officials over reacted-the NCAA instituted another stupid, unenforceable rule. "Let the kids have fun", is the chant over the airways.

These words from ESPN writer Jim Caple are typical of the Media's attitude:

"Doesn't a 15-yard penalty seem a trifle excessive? You're telling me that celebration demands the most onerous penalty you can give a team? That reacting to a successful play with pure joy is as bad as maliciously hitting a player out of bounds or clipping him below the knees or doing anything that might result in a severe injury? Please.

It was one of the absolute worst calls I've ever seen in football.

Mr. Caple, of course, misses the point. This young man is a college student. By all accounts an exemplary kid--one we would all like to have representing our families, town, or state.

His transgression was minor compared to other transgressions by players both on and off the field. (Rapes, muggings, theft, and shootings are almost common place among college football players, these days).

Yet, its consequences were huge. It could (eventually) cost Coach Willingham his job, and the University millions of dollars in TV revenues if they get ranked lower than they might have, had they won (unranked UCLA beat 18th ranked Tennessee and found themselves in the top 25). BYU was ranked 15th. Where would a win have put the Huskies?

So, the refs and the NCAA rules committee become the fall boys for this "over-reaction" to a minor transgression.

Of course, there's a group of Athletes who played in St. Helena from 1960 to 1965 who might have another opinion. If they do, it's because they played for a Coach, George Davis, who was emphatic that referees were like ordinary people--they want to be noticed. Ergo: We not were to give them a reason to drop a flag on us.

Coach Davis was emphatic. We were in the midst of a record setting win streak. He knew that, being human, what ref wouldn't' want to be able to tell the story about how he reffed the game where St. Helena lost? "That's just human nature," Coach Davis would tell us.

So our orders were clear. No one was to say, "Hey Ref." It was always to be "Mr. Referee, Sir." If you were being held by an opposing player, you were not to complain. You were to say, "Mr. Referee, Sir, could you please watch number 85. He's holding me."

I know. I once told a ref that I didn't' catch a ball he called complete. (He got mad, and told me to let him make the calls). Coach Davis refused a 15 yard penalty in our favor, because the ref had made a mistake. We were not like other teams.

Jake Locker is a college student. Universities are supposed to teach character above anything else. Good or bad, the rule is there.

In his famous address at the Lyceum, in Springfield, Abe Lincoln spoke of, "the increasing disregard for law which pervades the country: the growing disposition to substitute the wild and furious passions, in lieu of the sober judgment of Courts;"
He exorted his listeners, "never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others."

Though there were, indeed bad laws, (which should be repealed as soon as possible, until then, he said "let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the character of his own, and his children's liberty. Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap--let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges… in short, let it become the political religion of the nation"

All coaches ought to tell that to their kids. "Hey, the rule has changed this year, if you score, leave the ball on the ground--no celebrating of any kind anywhere."

An don't tell me it can't be done. For the first hundred years of football, until the me generation erupted in the 60's, no one ever, ever celebrated a Touchdown. It was considered bush league.

As a parent, my heart goes out to the young man. But as a footballer who learned at the knee of the Master, there's only one reason to play--otherwise, it's just a game of football.






Jeffrey Earl Warren
James Warren & Son
1414 Main St.
St. Helena, Ca.
94574
707-963-2748

Monday, September 08, 2008

COUGARS EXPOSED

"Cougar". My kids tell me a cougar is an aged chick who goes into a bar to pick up young boys in their 20's. Alas, when we were that age, Cougars didn't exist--or if they did, they failed to come out at night at Cal. My guess is had they prowled the Rat Skellar after a rugby game, they might have had an opportunity to bag some desperate, if inexperienced, prey. And like all Cougars, they never would have liked us for our minds.

WSU ought to think about a name change. For the Bears did to WSU, what the bar fly Cougars want those 20 something's to do to them. And as with Cougars everywhere, it wasn't pretty. Certain games need to be played with the lights out.

This abomination was done in plain day light. Not a good idea.

Someone asked if they are that bad, or we are that good? My guess is that it is more the former than the latter--at this stage--though hopefully, as the season goes on, this question will be obvious to all concerned. To reverse it, like all Cougars, parts of us are terrific. It's still too early to tell whether the whole package is the real deal--or will stand up to the light of day.

Jahvid Best is now being touted as a Heisman Trophy Candidate. When you take a ball on the first play and go 80 yards and then a bit later knock off an 86 yard td, there is some reason to believe that you might be in that elite category. (14 carries, 200 yards). Coaches and we old guys have always held out hopes that the chosen one will find his way to our campus. But let's not anoint anyone too soon--though Jahvid is worthy of our finest thoughts.

When you love a school situated in a community where the Mayor of the Town thinks the chosen one is named Ayr, Dumpster Muffin, or Burlap it's hard to "keep the faith." No one in Knoxville, Miami, or South Bend has to split loyalties like we do.

Now we have some areas that need improvement. Riley is a gamer and is the proper starter. But he was 6 for 14. Some of his misses, especially on the deep routes taught all armchair qb's why Tedford was not in a hurry to run away from Longshore. The right kid is starting, but no one should sell Longshore short. He has an incredibly accurate arm.

To whom he throws it, is worth arguing about.

"They kicked my butt on every aspect of the game. They came out and they hit me and hit me and hit me. Every play of the game, they hit me. I got shut out in the sack department, but like I said, they hit me in the mouth every single play."

Actually, that was a quote from the game two years ago in Pullman. But was it applicable to Saturday? We did look physical. A huge imporvement from last year.

I couldn't get local quotes, as due to the fact that I am taking the train on Tuesday back to D.C. for the Cal Maryland Game, that "working thing" kept me from going to the WSU game this weekend. (Both my wife and I made the same mistake. Neither of us married rich, so someone has to pay for those three tuitions).

So I didn't make the trip and like most of you I saw the game on TV. Not exactly right. Unlike most of you, I saw the game on my neighbor's TV, because here in St. Helena our antenna doesn't get all these funny stations. My neighbor has cable. Better than that, he has a winery. So if one has to suffer, watching a game on someone else's TV, it's not a bad idea to do it at a famous winemaker's house. One doesn't have to watch the game alone. There is always a glass nearby with something "red" (sorry Bears) to keep you company.

The game speaks for itself. There is nothing a couch potato can add. Interestingly, the kicking had a slight drop off, but the boys up front did their work and made lots of big plays. On the other hand, the game was mistake filled-especially in the kicking game.

Still, we almost hit for the cycle. No, we didn't get a safety, but we scored almost every other way possible, via defense, a blocked field goal, a field goal, through the air, on the ground. It's true we didn't score via the fumble-rooskie, or the hidden ball trick, but to mix metaphors, most of the bases were covered.

Four Picks (and Sid Q'uan Thompson dropped one-despite getting two)-by the D means a lot. The D line shut them down again. We got some sacks, It looked like we had a few hits worthy of the highlight reel.

No one criticizes one of the biggest wins in Cal History.

Well, Tomorrow I head down to within a nine iron of the Key Club in Emmeryville to catch a train headed for Chicago and then D.C. It's 69 hours of bliss until I get back there (theoretically) in time for the Cal Maryland Game. (As one friend said, you'll get there on Friday-you just don't know which one).

It's a bucket list thing. I've never taken a train across the U.S. I've always wanted to cross the U.S. on the ground. (That's code for being able to have a bloody Mary on Wednesday's with breakfast, and not hearing a word of complaint).

The books? Johnny Coleman gave me the best, NOTHING LIKE IT IN THE WORLD, Steve Ambrose's book about the men who built the railroad. And of course, since it is an Odyssey, why not read about the ultimate one, Odysseus' Odyssey as told by Homer. The only difference between Odysseus and me, if Circe and those others Sirens care to tempt me, unlike Odysseus, (with those Cougars in mind) chances are I will not tie myself to the mast in order to avoid all temptations.

I've always wanted to be hustled by a novogenarian.

Jahvid Best is being talked about in Heisman circles-not neat (though he deserves it). We remember what happened last year when one of our athletes was touted in the Heisman race.

Me thinks with Jahvid it will be different.

The O line is coming into its own. The D line with those 4 backers may be making a name for themselves.

It's way too early. There are lots of questions. But like all foolish Bear fans, despite any rational reason why, I'm boarding that train for the Rose Bowl Express. All Aboard!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren '70
www.jeffwarren.com

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

A CAL FAN'S NOTES/APRES MICHIGAN STATE

"Shane! Shane! Come Back."

That was the plaintive cry at the end of one of the great Westerns of all time. We could hear those voices again, on Saturday, as 11 Michigan State Spartans shouted it in vain as Mr. Vereen scooted 81 yards for a touchdown to thwart their comeback.

His run solidified that we'd have two 100 yard backs on the afternoon-but didn't guarantee that we'd get a W. Hey it's the Bears. We were nervous until the final gun.

Opening day is always electric. Though the 5pm start time can never feel right. We want to get up early, have a big breakfast, load up the car, drive down the valley through the vines, and get to the tailgate by 11 for a 1pm kick off. That's Cal football-Pappy Waldorf Style. Alas, it's not the 50's.

The times they are a changin' and we have to change,too-tv revenue, you know.
Stoney's and so many other tailgates were moved to Boalt Hall parking lot. Where did they move the folks who were used to parking there?

Kleeburger parking lot was now the North Entrance to the stadium-there are no Western Gates as the fences around the 4, (that's right) four tree sitters cut out all use of the Western gates.

We went through a season with lots of tree sitters and no inconvenience to us, the fans. They were just there-and odd curiosity.

Then someone in the Chancellor's office decided to eliminate some---but not all of the trespassers: The result a disaster for any civilized peoples.

It was Socrates who first said that the only thing worse than the crime committed by a criminal is the State which won't punish that crime. Lucky for him he drank the hemlock before he lived to see how wimpy the University has become in the face of a crime against property and people.

We can't do anything about Judge Miller's incompetence and her inability to apply the 8th Amendment (Speedy trials) to the University. But we could easily clear out the tree sitters and open up the gates so that 62,000 lives are not put in jeopardy in case there were a disaster like a fire or quake. Forcing everyone to enter and exit only the North and South Gates (that 4 snot nosed kids can sit in trees), is an embarrassment-worse-it is incredibly unsafe in case of a disaster. This has not been the Chancellor's finest moment.

Still, nothing could dampen out enthusiasm as we kibitzed over beer and chips as to the status of our team and the outlook for this year.

Once inside (security was backed up like trying to get into the Olympics in Beijing), the beauty of the lights in the fading sunlight, the cool weather, and the emerald green of the artificial turf made it all worthwhile.

Riley started. Where was Best? Shane Vereen was the deep back. Tedford, (ever the riverboat gambler) had Riley throw a backwards lateral pass to Vereen. What was this? Oh my God! A double pass, not unlike the one Tedford called in his very first game against Baylor. The Audacity was back.

Vereen was a little slow getting his throw off (nice arm though) and the deep back caught up to the receiver, who almost made the grab. It didn't work, but showed that at least someone at the University has some guts.

We didn't move on that first drive and Anger came in to punt. Now we sit in the very top row of section D-by choice. I swear the punt was higher than we were. The crowd let out an audible ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. When the ball came down 56 yards later all we could think was that the redshirt punter will be playing on Sundays next year. What a leg.

Speaking of punting, our first score came on a perfectly blocked punt by Nnabuife. Pure poetry.

We seemed in control and led 17 zip when with 6 minutes to go in the half, Longshore came in. His first pass was a 55 yard beauty. He threw complete again. We were down in scoring territory. He looked masterful.

Then he threw in the dreaded middle, and at the goal line a Sparten picked it off and would have gone 100 yards for a touch had not Best dragged him down around mid-field.

The D held and Longshore came back in. He threw over the middle again and was picked and the kid ran it in for a score. 17 to 7. Suddenly………

Would Tedford stick with Longshore? Riley returned and all our hearts went out to Longshore. Did he make bad judgments, or were the pass plays across the middle poor choices? It won't matter. Fate has chosen to caste a palor over a fine young athlete, who may yet play on Sundays-somewhere.

(From the Cal Web page) After struggling on offense for three quarters, Michigan State converted three third downs and got a roughing-the-punter penalty during a 97-yard drive that ended with Ringer's 10-yard TD run with 10:45 to play, pulling within 24-21.

Cal replied with its own lengthy drive ending in Ta'ufo'ou's (he of the incredible vowel movement) scoring catch with 5:45 left. Michigan State trimmed the lead to seven points, but Vereen then broke his impressive scoring run on an innocuous first-down play.

Then real tragedy almost struck. A freshman cornerback apparently made an interception which would have sealed the win for Cal. Jubilantly he ran down the field holding the ball high above his head before tossing it victoriously away.
However, a replay showed the child "trapped" the ball and never did catch it. That act of hot dogging and obfuscating the truth almost robbed all of his teammates of a well deserved victory. Imagine thinking one had won fair and square, only to go into the film room and see that fooling the officials, not honest play had won the game.

The whole team and coaching staff would have been let down. Hagen is young, and one can perhaps forgive his exuberance-once. But just because certain University officials are showing al lack of character in dealing with the law and the Tree sitters, doesn't mean our students need follow their bad example.

We wouldn't tolerate and English Major faking it on a test and I'm sure Tedford isn't about to tolerate a student athlete pretending to do something he didn't. Remember Andy Smith's words on back of that bench in Memorial Stadium:

We don't want men who will lie down bravely to die
But men who will fight valiantly to live.
Winning is not everything,
And it is far better to Play the game squarely and lose
Than to win at the sacrifice of an ideal

Is That not the Cal Football that we love?!


The weather turned chilly as the sky turned black. The Bears played well and stuffed a major running game. We should break into the top 25 and have much to be proud of. The talent level is unknowable at this point. Receivers didn't seem to get open-though balls were dropped. Riley is clearly a gamer-the 25 yard pass in the 4th when he was being tackled was just a "play"-the way great ones make plays which aren't always so pretty.
Next week, it's the Palouse, which this cowboy will have to watch on TV as he's headed back to Maryland on the train the following Tuesday, and has to make some pretense of earning a living.

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren '70

Friday, August 29, 2008

Cal vs. Michigan St.

Most men dream of lucre and power. But when you’re a Bear fan, one has different fantasies. You know it’s that time of year when your dreams turn from red corvettes to secret liaisons with Dumpster Muffin and Burlap. It’s not the amore which excites one. It’s the sheer thrill of removing the splinters afterwards that counts.

Dendrophilia (look it up) should be legalized between consenting adults.

In my dream, just at that crucial moment, Mayor Tom Bates arrives and whisks sweet Dumpster Muffin away. They exchange pants suits. Alas, the So-Sue-Me tribe’s, Zachery Running Wolf, appears on the scene and proposes marriage—to Mayor Bates. It’s then that I wake up in a sweat and realize that the season is about to begin.

To love Cal is to awake often in the middle of the night replaying horrors of games past. Mac Brown is often featured, as is SC losing to UCLA (despite UCLA losing 7 fumbles) and DENYING the Bears the Rose Bowl in ’75. Speaking of SC, dare we mention someone’s fumbled punt in ’69 with 1:32 seconds left? Sometimes it’s Grieb tackling Dummit on the five and watching the ref (on his back) signaling Touch Down! It can be Brad Williams getting out of bounds to stop the clock so the Indians can kick a game winning field goal, or DeShean stepping on the line at Arizona State (Why bring up the P.I. penalty?)—we can go on, but it is why we don’t have dreams—we have nightmares.

Still, Pollyanna’s that we are, we start each season filled with hope and grinning ear to ear. (I’ll never forget esteemed professor, Ken Jowett, appearing at Stoney’s tailgate on opening day in Blue Blazer and Cal Tie to make a statement that this was the year we were headed to Pasadena. Ken’s a brilliant political scientist—but prognosticator he’s not. That year we barely beat Rutgers in the last game for our one win of the season.

Of course, Tedford was the result, so maybe Ken was on to something.
Alas, the game is at 5pm (we need the TV revenues) so our body clocks will be a little out of whack, but at this age, most things aren’t working the way they once were, so what’s a little bad timing?

I get all my knowledge through rumor, but by every account of anyone who knew anything, Tedford was sticking with Longshore up until about 10 days ago. Either Riley has had a wonderful camp, or Tedford has handled the situation masterfully. Either way, we are on our way and it is in the hands of the gods.

Those who know much more than I have repeated that Tedford has abandoned the 5 star recruits and all the baggage (agents, possee’s, ESPN, parents etc.) for good players who can fit the system, and team concept needed to win at this level. A total stranger told me on Maui last Christmas (in an unsolicited conversation) that Tom Osborne A.D. at Nebraska was doing just that.

Word is Tedford has loaded up on lineman and is letting them duke it out like gladiators to find the furstest with the mostest.

Remembering the O line we had with Rogers and Aarington? If the above is true, that may not be a bad way to go.

One of my spies says that Running back Coach Ron Gould had two offers (one for a perennial BCS contender) and turned them down because he has the best two backs in the country. Time will tell.

Greg points out last time we played Michigan St. was back there. It was Tedford’s first year. They were ranked 15th and we walked in and whomped ‘em 46 to 22.

The Big 10. So much better than Sac State or William & Mary. Real Football, on a real Saturday , a real opponent, with real tailgates, real fans, real expectations, and real appeals still going on about fake issues. Ah Cal—Emily Dickensen said Hope is a thing with Feathers. Woody Allen corrected her saying the thing with feathers was his nephew and he’s in an institution in Zurich—but I digress.

For 48 hours at least—hope is ours--and no one—not even Ayr-- can take it away.

Go Bears,
Jeffrey Earl Warren ‘70


http://www.ibabuzz.com/beartalk/2008/08/28/a-twist-as-the-season-nears/

http://www.dailycal.org/article/102392/plaintiffs_resubmit_appeal_in_athleti
c_center_laws

Thursday, August 21, 2008

We've Got A QB

Bears,
This will be the shortest CAl Fan's notes of the Year. I just recieved this. I'ts 9:45pm on Thursday. Probably all of you know this already. But in case you missed it here's the Haps on Riley and Longshore. As I am unqualified to judge, I have no comment, but I know it will give us much to talk about at the new tailgate site: (If you have been in Afhanistan for the past year, trust me--no more Tail Gates at Kleeburger).

All I know is that the butterflies are coming. We're inside of 10 days. On the 8th, I'm on the train to cross America to watch the Maryland game.
Next Saturday, we will watch the harvest progress as we drive down to see the Bears against Duffy Dougherety's Michigan State Spartans. Is he still coach? Did Magaffy catch Randy Humprhire's pass against Michegan or Michegant St. I thin Michegan. Any.......

I've got the jitters. Are we just stupid--typical Cal fans who have high hopes with nothing to hope for?

Maybe.

On the other hand (and I get all my knowledge through rumor) it may be that we have a LOT of offensive linemen. If that is accurate--good things may happen--no matter what else happens on the field.

We are fortunate to be under the radar.

Be patient. Don't look for BIG PLAYS (though with Best we may be pleasantly surprised). If we've got a line--and the cancers have gone--it may be a fun year. On the other hand, maybe we'll be like the Sainted John Erby the year after we beat San Jose State, and he took the balcony (remember that in the north endzone) and yelled, "I smell Roses". Probably I'm wrong, but that may have been the only game Hall of Famer Marv Levy Won that year.

Go Bears, and stop by for a beer,

Jeffrey Earl Warren '70

____________________________________________________-
This is from Steve:

Just so you can see the announcements for yourself...

Oakland Trib

Big news

By Jonathan Okanes
Thursday, August 21st, 2008 at 7:26 pm in Training
camp
8 Comments »

Jeff Tedford has just named Kevin Riley the starting
quarterback. He said Nate Longshore will also play
against Michigan State. Much more to come….


SF Comical

Riley wins starting QB job at Cal

Thursday, August 21, 2008

(08-21) 20:26 PDT Berkeley, Calif. (AP) --

Kevin Riley will start the season opener at
quarterback for California against Michigan State with
former starter Nate Longshore expected to play as a
reserve.

Kevin Riley will start for Cal in the season opener
vs. M...Kevin Riley has won the nod as the starting QB
at Cal.

Coach Jeff Tedford made the announcement about his
quarterbacks after practice on Thursday. The Golden
Bears open the season Aug. 30 at home against the
Spartans.

"We feel like both of them have had great camps, but
Kevin's going to take the first snaps and we'll see
how it goes from there," Tedford said. "Nate will play
in the game. I don't know exactly when, but Kevin will
start."

Riley saw action in four games last year as a redshirt
freshman, throwing for 563 yards and five touchdowns.

In Riley's first career start last season, he tried to
run with the ball in the final seconds instead of
throwing it away, costing the Bears the chance at a
game-tying field goal in a 31-28 loss to Oregon State.
Cal would have been in position to move up to No. 1 in
the poll with a win, but instead lost six of its final
regular season games.

Riley did excel in the Armed Forces Bowl for Cal,
entering with a 21-0 deficit in the second quarter and
leading the Bears to a 42-36 victory over Air Force.
Riley was 16-for-19 for 269 yards and three touchdowns
to earn MVP honors in the game.

"I'm just getting ready for Michigan State," Riley
said. "It's an honor to be named the starter,
especially after what Nate's done at Cal. We're in
good hands having two good quarterbacks here. I just
have to prepare, watch film and get ready for this
game."

Longshore ranks fourth all-time at Cal in passing
efficiency (133.1), sixth in passing touchdowns (62)
and seventh in passing yardage (5,732). He is also
second all-time at Cal with 18 victories as a starting
quarterback.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A Cal Fan's Notes/Judge Lifts Injunction--Injures Back

Bear Fans,

Finally something to write home about.

After 19 months and more than 40,000 pages of documentation, (at an estimated cost of $50,000 per day) the Judge has lifted the injunction. I had forgotten that the judiciary in Berkeley is exempt from the 6th Amendment and that silly speedy trial stuff. This is the problem with slow white judges. We need some wheels in our judiciary.

Alas, Poor Tom Bates (Mayor of Berkeley and former Cal Footballer) has thoroughly disgraced himself by using Cal for political traction. He’s up for the Scott McClellan loyalty badge.

Despite all that, I think the rumors about his alleged affair with Dumpster Muffin are mostly exaggerations. We’ve all had one beer too many and shouldn’t make judgments.

That he woke up after a three day bender and said, “I sued who?” is pure gossip.

What I love about Berkeley’s claim to radicalism and being of the people:

Who got hurt most by this delay? Athletes of Color and women athletes. So much for advancing the cause of minorities and dedication to diversity.

Zachery Runningwolf (he of the So-sue-me Tribe) is going to have to find other 18 year old aimless and homeless kids from Vermont to hang out with. At least with those children he had much to talk about and was considered in the top 50% in critical thinking and intellectual prowess. Way to go, Dude! Maybe this will free you up to join some junior high kids in a protest against school dress codes.

Just cut and paste

http://www.dailycal.org/article/102128/judge_lifts_injunction_on_athletic_ce nter_construc
____________________________________________________________________________________
Larry Shikuma passed along the following. It’s an interview with new
offensive coordinator, Frank Cignetti:

http://myespn.go.com/blogs/pac10/0-1-37/Q-amp-A-with-new-Cal-offensive-coordinator-Frank-Cignetti-Jr-.html



You will note that Dilfer introduced Tedford to Cignetti. Dilfer’s dad is former Aptos football coach and Cal Fullback, Frank Lynch.

Lynch was also a fullback at Cal. I was on the Freshman team when he was a senior. We lost the Big Game that year. My college roommate razzed Lynch about the loss in the hall way, late that night. As I was a freshman pledge in the Psi U house, it was my job to clean up the blood on the wall. Repairing the cartilage in his nose was beyond my pay scale.

http://myespn.go.com/blogs/pac10/0-1-37/Q-amp-A-with-new-Cal-offensive-coordinator-Frank-Cignetti-Jr-.html

Go Bears,
Jeffrey
www.jeffwarren.com/

P.S. Yes, I am taking Amtrak back to Washington D.C. I leave Emeryville (time for a few hands at the Key Club) on Tuesday and arrive in D.C. on Friday. It’s expensive. If anyone else is interested and has no life, go on the web and check it out. I have a sleeper with two bunks. Unfortunately, I have a nose with two nostrils.

PPSS On my Radio show today at 5pm(it goes out to 6 people). I'll be interviewing Jesse Choper former dean of Boalt Hall. We'll be talking about the Supreme Court. It's a local station 1440am, but you can stream it live at KVON.com







President
James Warren & Son
1414 Main St.
St. Helena, Ca.
94574
707-963-2748
www.jeffwarren.com/
e-mail: Jeff@jeffwarren.com

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Minor Victory for Sanity re: Tree Sitters

A Cal Fan's Notes/A minor Victory For Sanity

Bear Fans,
It's 8pm. Just received this from Cantlon. Democracy is slow and clumsy, but I guess it's the best we've got.


Judge's Ruling on Student-Athlete Center Is 'A Major Victory for Our Students'

June 18, 2008

BERKELEY - University of California officials said tonight that the campus has prevailed on virtually every legal challenge brought to halt construction of the proposed Student Athlete High Performance Center.

"We are thrilled that the judge concluded that state seismic law will allow the Student-Athlete High Performance Center to be built on the site. This is a major victory for our students," said Vice Chancellor Nathan Brostrom.

On preliminary review, Alameda Superior Court Judge Barbara Miller's 120-page ruling, released Wednesday evening, gives the campus victory on nearly every aspect of challenges to its its environmental impact report and seismic review. More details and reaction will be available here following a press conference later this evening.

Judge Miller's full ruling is available on the Alameda Superior Court's website (Java required). A plain image version is also available.
For those who have asked, I haven't been writing for a while, because I didn't want to add to the "chatter"--which was not particularly positive last year.
Suffice it to say, that Tedford is the best we are going to get, and he apparently now understands how difficult it is to build a winner at this level, with today's "modern" athletes.
Many things that were said about some athletes were true. Some things were manifestly false. I didn't want to get in the middle of it.
Besides, I'm inaccurate. I get all my knowledge through rumor. My kid told me it was 80/20 that Ryan Anderson was going to stay.
My guess is that's the same kid who said she was studying for finals each night--no--not at Doe Library--at Kipp's.
What I do know is that we'll be there in CC (if they open it up) or DD watching the Bears as we have for the past 270 years.
It will be good to see all of you, and to "Share our Wisdon" each time we see Coach Tedford and the staff. How luck are they to have fans like us who know so much more than they do.
Hope your summer is as grand as ours. FYI: I'm looking into taking the train back to Maryland if anyone is interested--and has no life like I do.

Go Bears,
Jeffrey

Click below for more details:




http://calbears.cstv.com/genrel/061808aaa.html

http://apps.alameda.courts.ca.gov/fortecgi/fortecgi.exe?ServiceName=DomainWebService&TemplateName=html/imgviewer.html&rofadt=06/18/08&Action=21544273

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

THEY CALLED HIM "HAROLD"

He also answered to Harry, Hay Seed, Seed, or
Loren (among the printable names). H. Loren Hawley was a legend in his own mind and time.

Like a literary mythical figure out of a Chip Hilton sports story, he blew into Cal from the back waters of Trowbridge in the early 60’s.

Craig Morton (soon to be the number three pick in the NFL draft) was on Campus. He and “Harry” were to become inseparable friends, inconsolable antagonists, and then best friends again over a 40 year span.

Harry was an unlikely hero. Tall and gawkey, he looked like Ichabod Crane. His forehead was faux Cro-Magnaon. His eyes deep set, dark and piercing. His proboscis, Aquiline.

He was too "unselfconscious" to understand what comical figure he cut. His sleeves barely covered his elbows—his pant legs were at flood depth.

But like Giancarlo Gianinni in Lina Wertmuller's “Sette Belleze”, he had the gift of “the Seven Beauties”—the Italian version of the “unlikely” man who was irresistible to women.

Gals literally “fought” over Harry. But I’m ahead of myself.

He excelled at everything he tried—-except paying taxes.

He was not for everybody. Like all originals, he had his share of detractors.

But he could play. He could hit. He could party. And he could laugh.

He came for football and found himself, perhaps the greatest Rugger ever to play the game at Cal.

That’s a big boast—-one Harold wouldn't approve of--but understatement was not Harry’s forte.

In ’65 “Harold” went down under with guys called Brownie, Rookie, Botch, Threebes, Ruggles, Igor, Stanly and Blockhead.

They were rough guys. Hard drinking, hard playing, Cal Ruggers. Aussies of a certain age, still speak of them reverentially.

No matter how many people Harry fooled—-no matter how many hundreds he peeled off while wearing that 10 gallon Stetson and those $1,000 snake skin cowboy boots—-his teammates remained non-plussed. They’d known him when—-and loved him anyway.

He loved boats, pro athletes and Hollywood starlet’s. Naturally, at Cal, he had to date Miss California.

He liked action. He was with Spider Sabich the night before Andy Williams ex, Claudine Longet “accidently” shot him.

He was tough. I’m not sure former Notre Dame All American and 49er tight end Monty Stickles took many mandatory eight counts.

He called women “Gladys—much to the chagrin (one night in Mr. Laughs in New York) of boxer Joey Archer’s wife, whose name was—you guessed it—Gladys.

He could sell.

If you had an Eskimo in need of ice, or a Saudi in search of sand, Harold was your guy.

St. Helena’s Tom Blanchfield was his roomie. They played football for hall of Famer Marv Levy when his Cal “Wonder Team” won three games.

Harry would come up to the Valley and Sybil would cook for him, Nutzie, Walt and the boys. They’d deer hunt before double days. We RLS’ers were in awe.

In eighth grade we’d take the Greyhound bus down to Oakland, switch to a local bus--transfer and then walk to Memorial Stadium to see them play for the Bears.

Hawley was ever present.

One summer (after telling Al Davis to stick it) he arrived at the Lair with Morton, who’d just signed with the Cowboys. They took some staffers to Diamond Jim’s where their stash of Tequila was drained and the stone fire place was littered with "post toast" broken glass. Mi-Wuk old timers speak of it still.

We got to know each other as adults. I was working in N.Y. when Morton got traded to the Giants. Hawley arrived, with a scheme to build oil rigs--each one with our name on it.

What did we care? It meant nights at Studio 54, DP at McMullen’s and dinner at 21. Maybe a “Gladys” or two would join us.

We went to six straight Super Bowls. We arrived on Wednesday's (the games were secondary).

The stories are legend—if unrepeatable. From watching the sun come up over Bourbon St. with Jerry Jeff Walker, to Bungalow 10 at the Beverly Hills (which we hear still holds the record for the most complaints in one night. Burning the dresser in the fireplace seemed like such a good idea at the time—ask Tanya Tucker). TJ’s entrance through the skylight was original.

Then it was off to “Hef’s” to see the sun rise again. But I digress.

Suddenly, Loren had kids and so did we. Overnight, life was different.

One day, the unthinkable occurred. Loren, the world's toughest guy, had the Big “C”—not the one we wore on our sweaters.

Back in the 90’s a party was held in Trowbridge for “all the guys who’d been kicked in the head by Harry.” All the bad boys turned out. It was a last good bye.

Only Harold wouldn’t play by the rules--something new! Though they cut out his tongue and most of the muscles around his neck and shoulder, he wouldn’t check out,

The most powerful man we’d ever known was now talking like Donald Duck and writing words on a pad.

Still he played golf regularly with the Wankers and Shankers (don’t ask).

And he beat the disease. He had kids to raise. Soon, Garret was playing Rugby in San Diego and Collin at Cal. He was the MVP in last year’s NCAA Championship game.

A man who couldn’t speak was crying in the stands.

Cal finally inducted Dad into the Hall of fame. His boys gave a speech as he looked on—-stooped, but unbowed.

He had no tongue, no muscles in one shoulder, and a hole in his throat. But he still eyed the ladies—and they giggled back—as they always did.

We dared not show him any pity. Silently, we admired his courage. We were in awe of his dignity. He never complained.

Harold was a happy guy. He loved his kids. He loved friends. He loved Cal. He was the definition of a true "Character." Say what you will, the world just got duller. He will be sorely missed.













































Jeffrey Earl Warren
James Warren & Son
1414 Main St.
St. Helena, Ca.
94574
707-963-2748