|Packers QB Aaron Rodgers doesn't think Cal coach Jeff Tedford should be fired. (US Presswire)|
Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour has to make a decision this weekend -- if she hasn't already made it -- to fire or retain 11-year coach Jeff Tedford.
That decision got slightly more interesting on Thursday when Tedford got a vote of confidence from Cal's most recognizable alum: Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers. In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Rodgers said that the embattled coach should stay.
"I think he deserves an opportunity to recruit those new facilities," Rodgers said. "They've been talking about the facility at Cal since I was recruited there in the winter of 2002."
The new facilities of course are Cal's $150 million Student-Athlete High Performance Center (SAHPC) and the newly renovated Memorial Stadium, which was overhauled at a cost of $321 million.
Neither facility would have been built if not for the success of Tedford, who's had nine winning seasons in 11 years at Cal. In the previous nine seasons before Tedford, the school had one winning season, in 1993.
Though Rodgers' opinion probably won't sway Barbour's decision, it can't hurt to have a Super Bowl-winning quarterback's vote of confidence.
"Obviously, the whole program's disappointed they're not going to a bowl game this year. I think the picture looks bright and it's going to be brighter with coach Tedford there," Rodgers said.
Rodgers attended Cal after spending a year at Butte Community College (Oroville, Calif.). He then spent two seasons with the Bears before entering the NFL after his junior year in 2005. "I know personally, I owe a lot of my success to [Tedford]," Rodgers said. "I talk to him in the offseason and look forward to coming to Berkeley every year to visit."
Rodgers said he hasn't talked with Tedford about his job status.
"I wouldn't, this is not something he's spending time thinking about," Rodgers said. "He's so focused on getting his guys ready and prepared each week."
Tedford will coach his final game of the season -- and possibly his Cal career -- on Saturday when the Bears travel to Oregon State. Tedford is scheduled to meet with Barbour on Sunday and presumably a decision on his future will be made shortly after.