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University of California Golden Bears head coach Jeff Tedford during their game against the Stanford Cardinal in the third quarter at Memorial Stadium for the 111th Big Game in Berkeley, Calif. on Saturday, November 22, 2008. (Nhat V. Meyer/Mercury News)
Darting here and there ... How ironic that Jeff Tedford's Cal swan song could be against Oregon State, which went 3-9 last year and didn't even seriously consider firing its longtime coach, Mike Riley. Tedford (82-56) has a better record than Riley (79-65), has more winning seasons (nine to seven) and has taken his team to more bowls (eight to six). Moral? It is utterly ridiculous Cal is contemplating firing this man. We remember the days when the 49ers and Raiders jobs were beneath Tedford. We remember the days when Nebraska and Washington wanted him badly. Instead, he showed loyalty, a word apparently not in the dictionary of some Cal alums. The whole key for Tedford, provided he stays: Find the quarterbacking equivalent of Missy Franklin, the Olympic swimmer who committed to Cal this week. You want victory over integrity, Old Blues? Here's a name for you: Bobby Petrino. Hey, you're guaranteed to win. But you might have to slip him in through the back door under the name Al Davis once called him: Bernard Petrino. Stanford at Oregon, in the rain, without Andrew Luck. Um, good luck. Just a hunch, but it's doubtful Buster Posey will ever have to resort to listing his qualifications on Linkedin. We knew Posey was an MVP lock when he not only won the batting title but also led the N.L. in some of those key SABR-metric stats: adjusted OPS, adjusted batting wins, base-out wins added, and the all-important WAR (wins above replacement). Quadruple Crown! He may be the new N.L. MVP, but now the tougher question: Has Posey conquered the ultimate level of his phone app game Buster Bash? Having attempted it, we doubt it. Thinking Too Hard Dept.: The Miguel Cabrera-Mike Trout debate. Win the traditional Triple Crown and lead your team to the playoffs ... next! Many arguments for Trout are valid, but it's not called the Best All-Around Player Award, and the WAR mongers just don't seem to get that. Announcement at the Jeremy Affeldt household this week: No more hamburgers, kids! Billy Beane, Bob Melvin, and if they had an award for A.L. Pitching Coach of the Year, Curt Young. Nice to see Manny Ramirez finally hit his first home run of the year (oppo-shot playing in the Dominican Winter League on Wednesday). A tad late for Oakland. Think Bruce Bochy cares about N.L. Manager of the Year? Heck, if two rings aren't enough, he won that old thing 16 years ago. Probably uses it as a door stop now. Hard to say how many Michael Crabtrees he saw when he made that throw while concussed, but Alex Smith somehow managed to hit the real deal. That Rams-49ers tie: Rare as they are, the NFL has to figure out a way to deliver us a winner and a loser at today's prices. Nine catches for 101 yards is a nice game for Vernon Davis. Unfortunately, those are the cumulative numbers for the last four games ... with no touchdowns. What up with that? Currently the No. 1 commandment in fantasy football: If your players are going against the Raiders, start them. And this week, Drew Brees. Hoo boy. Speaking of Andrew Luck, he matches against Tom Brady on Sunday. Must-see NFL TV. TMZ Sports Couple of the Week: Jerramy Stevens & Hope Solo. A 3 a.m. domestic dispute, a trip downtown, followed shortly by marriage. Reality show destined to follow. Only in La-La Land: Mike D'Antoni on the hot seat before he even coaches his first game for the Lakers. Apparently Magic Johnson and a lot of other people don't think Lakers' V.P. Jim Buss is a chip off the old low block (not nearly enough chains, for one thing). Harrison Barnes: keeper. He might be just scratching the surface of what's to come, but the kid needs a nickname in the worst way. Bad News just doesn't seem to fit. That oil painting Don Nelson received at Oracle Arena the other night? That puppy will be lucky if it gets wall space in Nellie's garage. For one, it looks way too much like Jimmy Johnson.
Contact Carl Steward at firstname.lastname@example.org. More darting on Twitter @stewardsfolly.