As we start to wind toward what should be an inevitable announcement of Cal's new head coach this week, a clear hierarchy has emerged of who would be satisfactory, who would be intriguing, and who's the ace in the hole.
We liken it to movie sequels. We're basically looking at guys who almost everyone has been through once and who anyone else might take, so we know their track record and have a general idea.. Here are the possibilities.
10. The Matrix Reloaded
Herm Edwards: We believe he is the one who will set us free. College football has made it seem like there are plenty of Architects out there and he will somehow fail like all the others before him have, and then things reboots. Unless he decides to make a choice. Unless he decides to deviate from the program. Because he knows what he has to do. Because he has a choice to make. And he knows that this choice will determine what comes next. And he knows that the choice could break the program. So he must realize what he must do.
9. Bad Boys 2
: The thought of Wilcox and Tosh returning to Cal so they can personally rampage the university like Vandals has a sort of dystopian post-apocalyptic flair to it. I'd rather wait for the Mayans to unleash their vengeance before making this hire, since at this point we'll probably just want football without helmets.
8. Temple of Doom
Hue Jackson: Do you want someone who has bounced around football jobs like a Bedouin tribesman, lost to Tom Holmoe in a battle of wits at U-S-FREAKING-C, threw his team under the bus as a head coach and got his walking papers handed to him as a result of said tirade, and has openly stumped for the Cal coaching job despite being part of a franchise in the race for the playoffs? KALI MA!
7. 2 Fast 2 Furious
Ron Rivera: Hey, so two schools in this conference have already made big splashes in trying out professional names, so let's give someone who's been even LESS successful than the previous two candidates our expensive new vehicle and let him drive.
6. Iron Man II
Tim DeRuyter: I'm guessing that unless you're already a diehard, you're not exactly turning out in droves for this one. This guy might be real good, but you're not exactly going out of your way to buy tickets to watch this unless you're a fan of the leading man. Who knows, he maybe unstoppable, but he might also be a retread. You never really know until you try it.
5. The Phantom Menace
Sonny Dykes: Oh yeah, there will be booms, explosions and plenty of offensive-minded duels. There are also so many unanswered questions about discipline and management and dialogue that the possibility of a Jar Jar waits around every corner. The wizardry of the offense might also be explained away by midi-Chlorians if the team gets outdueled by the Oregons and Arizonas of the world, and then we'd get really confused and exasperated.
4. Back to the Future, Part II
Mike MacIntyre: Isn't this deja vu all over again? Haven't we seen this formula before? An upstart coach that finds great success in a certain environment, stumbles into a prolific JuCo quarterback, and garners instant success? Do we have to go back and do it all over again? And what are you doing with that sports almanac Marty?
3. Judgment Day
Bob Diaco: There is nothing spectacular about this man on paper. He just gets his job done and gets moving to the next task. There's no definite personality or total understanding as to what he will do, but he will break your offense and will get it all done. He can only hope he doesn't encounter another of his like. Solid and reliable, but it's unclear if he's just a function of his design or he can do anything other than destroy your offense.
2. The Empire Strikes Back
Charlie Strong: Hey, remember when we had a shot at this guy a decade ago? And it turned he was super awesome at his job after finally getting a shot at htis again Wouldn't it be cool if we got a second chance to do it all over again?
This ending will sadly be a dark one. Pour your hopes into trying to get him, and you'll end up being frozen in carbonite.
1. The Dark Knight
Chris Petersen: Self-explanatory at this point. [Cue a thousand Batman quotes in the comments that describe the Moby Dick of the Smurf Turf].