Tedford has had Stanford's number in Big Game

The other guy is getting the attention. A huge article on Jim Harbaugh in Sports Illustrated. Why not? Stanford has lost only one game. Stanford is ranked No. 7 in the nation.
“I have a lot of respect for coach Harbaugh,” said Jeff Tedford.
And two wins in three tries over Harbaugh.
Fans get bored. Alumni get impatient. A few years ago, Tedford was the miracle worker, the man who took a Cal team that had been 1-11 and turned it around immediately to 7-5.
It was 2002, and Tedford was Coach of the Year.
Now, he’s the nearly man. Now, he’s the one who hasn’t found a way to get Cal to the Rose Bowl. Who last weekend couldn’t quite provide the magic to knock off No. 1 Oregon.
So this 112th Big Game, this meeting of history and rivalry between Stanford and Cal on Saturday at Berkeley, is particularly important for Tedford and the Golden Bears.
It’s their reason. It’s their season. It’s their retribution.
Tedford turned 49 two weeks ago. “I love Cal,” he says. And Cal loves him. Or does it?
He’s beaten Stanford seven of his eight seasons. (Before Tedford’s arrival, Stanford had won seven straight). He’s coached Cal to a bowl game the previous seven years.
Yet, the conversations too frequently are about what Tedford hasn’t accomplished rather than what he has, which is a great deal.
“I’m probably my harshest critic,” Tedford said a few days back. “I know everybody’s expectation level. Everybody wants to win a championship, and nobody wants it more than I do, and so you get disappointed at times. You keep plugging away.
“Yeah, you get worn down. It’s the ups and downs of football. The difference in feelings between a win and loss, it’s just unbelievable. You have to learn to deal with it the best you can and get over it and move on to the next game. It takes a toll on you emotionally, but that’s what the profession is.”
The profession is losing your running back, Jahvid Best, to the pros after his junior year. The profession is losing your quarterback, Kevin Riley, to an injury in the middle of the season and facing Stanford with Brock Mansion, who’s got arm but really doesn’t have a clue.
He will in time when his coach is Tedford, who helped develop Aaron Rodgers and Kyle Boller at Cal, Trent Dilfer and David Carr at Fresno State, Joey Harrington and Akili Smith at Oregon.
Tedford is the quintessential workaholic. He sleeps in his office early in a week. The World Series? Never watched a pitch, although he did get a score now and then.
“Coaching?” he asks rhetorically. “There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing. I love the kids. They motivate me every single day. That’s who I feel the worst for when we’re not a success. You love how they work, and you want the best for them.”
He’s done very well by them. And by Cal.
“I’ve coached more than 100 games,” Tedford said. “A lot of experiences. You live and die with every one of them.”
With a 7-1 record against Stanford, it’s been much more living than dying.

Art Spander has been covering Bay Area sports since 1965 and also writes on www.artspander.com and www.realclearsports.com. E-mail him at typoes@aol.com.

collegeJim HarbaughOther Sportssports

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

School board members Gabriela Lopez (left) and Alison Collins (right) say they have been the subject of frequent hateful, racist and sexist attacks during their time on the school board. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F Examiner)
Angered by Lowell decision, SFUSD grad targets school board members with violent imagery

Facebook page depicts two women of color on board with swastikas and x-marks on their faces

Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, a former school board member, said it was ‘ridiculous’ that the school district did not yet have a plan to reopen. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Supervisors demand SFUSD set a timeline for reopening

Pressure grows on district to resume in-person learning as The City’s COVID-19 case count goes down

“Tenet,” the new Christopher Nolan film starring John David Washington, is showing at the drive-in in Concord. (Courtesy Warner Bros.)
Drive-ins are popping up all over the Bay Area

There are pandemic-era options for movie lovers who want to watch outdoors

The San Francisco International Arts Festival will present performances this weekend outdoors at Fort Mason, including on the Parade Ground, Eucalyptus Grove and Black Point Battery. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF International Arts Festival wins health department approval for weekend performances

Rules allow no more than 50 people at outdoor Fort Mason performances

In this handout image provided by the California Department of Corrections, convicted murderer Scott Peterson poses for a mug shot March 17, 2005 in San Quentin, California. Judge Alfred A. Delucchi sentenced Peterson to death March 16 for murdering his wife, Laci Peterson, and their unborn child. (California Department of Corrections via Getty Images/TNS)
Prosecutors to retry penalty phase of Scott Peterson trial

2003 discovery of Laci Peterson’s body led to sensational high-profile murder trial of husband

Most Read