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RIP Jim Sweeney

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by HanSenSE, Feb 9, 2013.

  1. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    Best known for two stints at Fresno State, including directing 24-7 win over USC in 1992 Freedom Bowl at the Big A, with Dilfer at QB.

  2. mpcincal

    mpcincal Well-Known Member

    When I was working at the Union-Tribune (way back when it was actually called the "Union-Tribune"), our college football writer did the weekly WAC notebook and he always seemed to have something from Sweeney in there. I had friends outside the biz who wondered why the Fresno State coach was always in those stories and I told them "because Sweeney's by far the most quotable coach in the conference."

    My favorite was when our writer asked Sweeney about the SDSU defense and why it had the problems it did (this was during the Marshall Faulk era when the Aztecs scored a lot of points but usually gave up too much also). At the time SDSU's DC was a guy named Del Wight, who was previously an assistant with Sweeney, but Sweeney apparently didn't think much of his coaching ability, because the quote went like this:

    "You wanna know why San Diego State's defense is struggling? It's because Del Wight is a moron. That's "moron" -- M-O-R-O-N!"

    Ever since I read that story, I loved Sweeney. RIP.
  3. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    Better known in Dallas for fathering Kevin Sweeney, who was 2-0 as Cowboys quarterback during the 1987 NFL strike.

    Danny White returned for the final strike game and lost.
  4. LanceyHoward

    LanceyHoward Well-Known Member

    Sweeney had a long D-1 career. 19 years at Fresno and before that nine years at Washington State. He created someting of a coaching tree. Off the top of my head Joe Tiller, Mike Price, Dennis Erickson and Jack Elway coached for him at Washington State.

    When Elway moved to Cal-State Northridge in the mid 70's he enrolled John at the local high school powerhouse, Granda Hills. Th coach at the school, Jack Neumier, was running a three wider receiver offense and throwing the ball a lot. Elway started running the offense at the college level and it was his colleagues who picked up the offense and helped popularize it.
  5. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    Sweeney was a riot as a public speaker. Today our shooter recalled he was the guest speaker for the inaugural high school hall of fame dinner and was about 21/2 sheets to the wind. I covered the beat occasionally and when discussing the schedule one year, he talked about how Wyoming in November would be their toughest challenge because of the wind coming off the mountains and the horses pissing on their legs.

    But what he'll be remembered for is Bulldog Stadium, on campus. When he arrived in Fresno in 76, they were playing at Fresno City College's stadium off campus and in a bus league, the PCAA (now Big West). Now they've been a force in the WAC and the MWC.
  6. RubberSoul1979

    RubberSoul1979 Active Member

    Farewell to a one-of-a-kind coach who broke new ground -- with the help of some dynamite quarterbacks. Jeff Tedford was the starting QB in Fresno before giving way to Kevin Sweeney (who I believe was the NCAA's all-time leading passer when he graduated). Later, it would be Trent Dilfer in charge of that offense.

    Some of Fresno State's fiercest battles of that era came against San Jose State. Nice to see both of them in the same conference again.
  7. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Even though they won anyways, why the heck did the Cowboys run Dorsett only four times against a bunch of guys off the street?
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