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Back for another season

Fear not Cal fans… the longest running Cal Football blog is back for another season. (Can you believe this is my 16th season blogging about Cal football as a whole and my 13th season here on EMFMV?) Here’s the posts you can expect before the season starts:

  • Reasons for optimism post
  • Reasons to be concerned post
  • Game by game score prediction
  • Detailed UC Davis game prediction

Then throughout the season, expect to see the following for each game:

  • Game prediction post
  • On The Road Home podcast for all games I attend
  • Post game thoughts post
  • Mid-week updates and thoughts as they come to me

Are you excited? Who’s ready for another season of Cal football?

Content coming…

I had a *VERY* enjoyable weekend at the game and at Disneyland, but I’ve got good news and bad news:

The good news is I’ve got a bunch of content to post about the USC game.

The bad news is I’m very much in “recovery mode” right now.

Hopefully I’ll get one or two things posted today and the rest before the weekend/big game.

Back for another year…

It’s been radio silence here at EMFMV since the season ended.  Last year was one of the busiest of my life.  It was my final year of formation to become a Catholic deacon.  Formation weekends/retreats prevented me from going to 4 of the home games.  In addition, the academic courses took up lots of my free time.  If that wasn’t enough, it was the first year of me starting a new business.

The result was it wasn’t the best year for EMFMV.

I was ordained at the end of June, so my schedule this year will be very different and I’m hopeful that I’ll make all but one of the Cal games.  Heck, I might even get lucky and if we get a 7:30 PM start for the UCLA game and I can rush down to Berkeley after an all-day Church commitment.  Plus, without all of the academic classes, I should be able to spend more time blogging.  So, here’s what I hope do to:

  • Game by game predictions next week
  • Game preview every week
  • On The Road Again podcasts after every home game
  • Post-game thoughts every week
  • Game re-watch every week
  • Commentary on news as it happens

So, welcome back to another exciting season of Cal Football and Go Bears!

Back for 2017

I’m sure my *huge* readership has been on the edge of its seat wondering if I’m going to keep blogging.  It’s been a particularly quiet off season.

But as the longest continuous Cal football blogger, I can’t just give up my title!

Here’s what you can expect from me this year:

  • Previews for each game
  • Recap of each game
  • Various thoughts as they come up
  • Pre-season prediction post (coming soon!)
  • Oregon eclipse recap (gotta share my awesome experience)

So stick around for another great season of blogging (notice I didn’t say great season of football)

Update on tickets for sale

As I mentioned about a while back, I’m trying to find someone to split my season tickets (2 adults, 5 kids seats) with.  I haven’t yet found anyone, but I still decided to go ahead and renew before the mid-February deadline to renew.

Which means I’m still looking and also open to more flexible arrangements.  Want just specific games?  Want the whole year?  Heck, even want to propose something that you don’t want to move on until later… make me an offer (or proposal), even one significantly below face value.  As long as it isn’t a joke of an offer, there’s a good chance I will accept.

So, if you want to take your family to a Bears game and you want to do it on the cheap but with pretty good seats, particularly from a logistics stand point, I’m your man.  Leave a comment and I’ll get back to you.



(Update: This post was originally titled “Anyone interested in an EMFMV liveblog tomorrow night?”.  But seeing as how no one said they were interested, I won’t be doing one.  No biggie.  I’ll be enjoying the game anyway!)

It’s been a long time since we’ve done a live-blog during a game… anyone interested in participating on one tomorrow night for the OSU game?  Post a comment if you are and if there’s at least a few who are, I’ll have one.

Sorry for the radio silence

I didn’t get to watch the game over the weekend and this week has been crazy so far.  I watched the good part of the game last night and saved the soul crushing part for tonight after I get home from a Church commitment.  Expect a post up tomorrow with summary thoughts (not a detailed bulleted list).

Back for another year

Fall practice started yesterday.  From the off-season news and the reports from yesterday, it’s looking a lot like 2015: Offense should be productive with an experienced QB (David Webb) and young WR’s but defense may struggle mightily unless they can fill the holes among their young talent.  There’s reason to hope the Bears could be much better than 2015 (better O-Line, reasons to believe defense will not be as susceptible to the big momentum-deflating plays), but there’s also reason to fear it will be a season with lots of promise, yet too much of a  frustrating inability to put all the pieces together consistently, game after game.

In any case, I’ll be doing my usual thing: Game predictions, post-game posts, podcasts for games I go to, and random musings.  Any particular requests for content this year?

Go Bears!

I’m done

(Clarity update: this was written just before halftime during the Oregon game)

I’ve got better things to do with my life than watch this garbage.  How can the team that got those stops in the 1st quarter and looked mostly unstoppable turn into completely incompetent on both sides of the ball?

The only answer is effort.  This team doesn’t have it.  Goff couldn’t care less and the rest of the team with him.  Defense too.  Over 400 yards in basically 1 quarter.  Are you FREAKING kidding me!?!

To hell with them all.  Dykes, Goff, Franklin, Kaufman.

Don’t be surprised if you don’t see any posting from me for a while.

Happy BTTF Day

Happy Back to the Future Day.  For those not in the know, today is the day Marty McFly and Doc Brown arrived in the future in their time machine: From October 21st, 1985 to October 21st, 2015.

The Cubs almost made the movie’s otherwise completely horrific futuristic predictions interesting (they were predicted to win the world series over “Miami” in the 2015 World Series), but seeing as how they’re down 0-3 in the NLCS, it doesn’t look likely.

In any case, enjoy your hoverboards and flying cars.

Interest in the Pick’Em league again?

I got an e-mail request to get the Pick’Em league back up and running.  It wouldn’t be too much work to get the software working again, but I’d sure like to make sure I get at least a handful of people signed up to put in the effort.

Who’s in?  (Add a comment in the comment section if you are)

Are you ready for some football?

Fall practice is upon us so it is time to bring the blog out of hibernation!

It looks like expectations in Berkeley are pretty high.  I was surprised to see the Pac-12 media poll put Cal in 3rd, ahead of Washington (surprising), Washington State and Oregon State (not so surprising).  That would suggest they’re anticipating about a 5-4 conference record and one would expect that they would see us going 2-1 in non-conference play (losing to Texas).  So a 7-5 season.

I guess that jives with what my expectations are, although I have hopes that Cal can beat Texas.  I’d be surprised to see the team go 6-3 or better in conference.  There’s an outside chance Cal finally gets the Ax back, but loses to Oregon and USC seem likely and ASU/Utah is the harder of the two cross-division options we have (the other being Colorado/Arizona).  When you add in UCLA and even Washington (in Seattle), hard to imagine there’s only 3 losses there.

But, maybe the team takes another big step forward this year.

Speaking of which, so far at fall practice the general feel is that the defense is significantly improved.  That would be great news if true.  The defensive line is providing good pressure and the secondary has found a nose for the ball, with Evan Rambo alone picking off the ball 4 times in 3 days.  Of course, there’s plenty of reason to wonder about all of that.  Is the offense regressing?  Or perhaps the offense just isn’t in rhythm yet?  Or is it all talk and “significantly improved” means they’re not unbelievably horrible (125th in nation), but just really, really bad (100th in nation)?  Frankly, I don’t think we’ll really know until they line up against Texas in the 3rd week.

As for the blog, here’s what you can expect this year:

  • OTRH podcasts for home games
  • OTRH podcast for the Texas game (yes, I’m going!)
  • Weekly game preview posts with predictions
  • Weekly post-game celebratory posts (or wailing and gnashing of teeth when necessary)
  • Occasional mid-week posts as interesting topics come up
  • A handful of fall practice posts, including one after the 8/16 practice which I will see in person

So kinda the same as the last couple years.

Here’s hoping for a great season in Berkeley!

Changing servers

I’ve finally had it with my web hosting company, so I’m switching to a new one. It’s a spectacularly painful process to do in a way that has the minimum impact to my users/viewers.

Today is the big day for moving ExcuseMeForMyVoice to the new server. It should be mostly invisible minus just one thing:

If you’re pointed to the old server, comments will be disabled. I’ve already imported all the content to the new server, so I don’t want any additional content on the old server. Your local DNS server should get the address for the new server in about a day.

If you’re still being pointed at the old server as of Friday 10/31, please e-mail me at blog AT excusemeformyvoice DOT com. If you are seeing problems on the new server, leave a comment in this post.

UCLA tickets for sale

Unfortunately I can’t go to the UCLA game, so my tickets are for sale.

I have two regular reserved ($33) and 5 Youth (under 18 y.o. – $16) tickets. I’m in section C, in the 1st 2 rows above the concourse (which means extra leg room) and on the isle. 4 seats in the 1st row and 3 in the 2nd. While I have to admit that there are better locations around the bowl than section C, you won’t find a better seat to watch the game in that section and the prices are cheaper due to the location, particularly if you’re bringing kids (and it’s a 12:30 PM kickoff).

I can upgrade the youth seats to regular reserved and sell them at that price but I need to know by Saturday’s game (UW) so I can do it at the box office while down there, so let me know if you’re interested.

Either leave a comment or e-mail me at tickets AT excusemeformyvoice DOT com.

No liveblog tonight

I’m not going to have great Internet access tonight. You might see a peep or two from me, but no liveblog.

WSU Game set for 7:30 PM on Pac-12 network

BearTalk let’s us know what we’d expect (an off-prime-time game on Pac-12 network).

Which leads me to a question… anyone know how much data the ‘Pac-12 Now’ app will use if I watch the game on 4G?

Anybody know a “Pac-12 friendly” sports bar in or near Roseville?

I understand why/how it happened, but the WORST thing about the new Pac-12 is that all games on the Pac-12 network are pretty difficult to go see at a sports bar. Almost all sports bars have DirecTV because overall it has the most sports channels, particularly the NFL. However, since DirecTV and the Pac-12 network can’t come to terms, it means that the Cal game is not available at most sports bars. So when a cheap bum like me who isn’t willing to pay for cable wants to watch a Cal game, I’ve got very, very, very few options.

Since this Saturday’s game against Arizona is on Pac-12 networks, that’s a very long way of saying, anybody know of a sports bar (or really any place I can reasonably go and watch the game) close to Roseville, that uses Comcast or Dish or any other provider that carries the Pac-12 network?

ARG! Comments enabled again

I seriously don’t understand how this keeps happening. The last comment made was Friday evening, so it turned off sometime after that. I was out of town all weekend. All I managed to do is get in a quick post on my smart phone on Saturday. I can’t possibly imagine what I would have done to turn off commenting.

I like wordpress, but in this case, this is all I have to say to say to them:

Comments are now re-enabled.

Regular season is upon us

It’s hard to believe, but this is now the regular season. Practices get into their regular season flow this week and all emphasis will be on beating this week’s opponent.

I’ll have a few more pre-season posts, but wanted to give you my in-season blogging plan. Expect these posts each week:

  • Pre-game prediction post with exact score
  • Post-game wrap-up post
  • OTRH podcast for all home games (except Sac State and UCLA, which I sadly won’t be attending) including the Oregon game (which is technically a home game.
  • Live blogging all road games (except Oregon State which I won’t get to watch live)
  • At least one “thoughts of the week” post

Back in business for 2014

Another year is upon us with fall camp starting on Monday and I’ll be back to regular posting at least a few times a week between now and when the Bears wrap up their Rose Bowl winning season on 1/1/15 (ahhh… wouldn’t that be nice… OK back to reality).

Of course, commenting requires info/stuff to comment on and to that end, it’s nice to see how many practices are open to the public this fall, although I wish it was back-loaded instead of front-loaded. (see here for details.) Unfortunately I’ll be lucky to make even one of them… although I might be able to get one in. Nevertheless my data will mostly be limited to what I read from others.

Speaking more broadly about the upcoming season, I think what I’ve been working through in the off-season in my mind is how to set my expectations appropriately. What do I reasonably want from this season?

Here’s what I’ve come up with:

  • First and foremost I want to see something that is for the betterment of the student athletes. When they look back on this 10, 20, even 50 years down the road, they validly look at their time at Cal as something they’re glad they had in their life.
  • Second, I want to have an enjoyable time watching and thinking about Cal football, with my family, particularly with my sons. Saturday’s in Strawberry Canyon can be a great joy.
  • Third, I want to see a strong effort on the field. I want to see a team that has little to regret when the game is over. If they lose, it was a noble effort. If they win, it’s something we can all be proud of.
  • Finally, I want to see a team that gives me hope for the future. I want to see a team that is improving and that’s there’s reason to believe at some point in the not too distant future I can have more specific goals for the team than the above.

I very specifically don’t have a win total I’m shooting for nor specific games I want them to win. But I’m pretty sure that all the above goals won’t be met without at least a few wins and far more competitive games than we had last season.

Any thoughts on those goals?

(More specific posts on various units, predictions and projections to come.)