Ron Agostini

Modesto’s football fields are fine if you like mud

Downey linebacker Tylino Wesley recovers a fumble during a game between Modesto and Downey at Chuck Hughes Stadium at Downey High on October 3rd.
Downey linebacker Tylino Wesley recovers a fumble during a game between Modesto and Downey at Chuck Hughes Stadium at Downey High on October 3rd.

Reading time, two minutes:

▪ Grace Davis and Modesto were forced to play Thursday night at Downey, rather than the scheduled Friday night at Gregori. Why? Because the turf at Gregori’s Don Lanphear Stadium was rendered unplayable after one storm.

▪ The price tag for the venue at Gregori was $3.8 million. Should have at least gotten the grading and the drainage right.

▪ Same thing happened at Modesto Junior College Stadium for Saturday night’s game against Chabot. One storm – mudbowl.

▪ The Fields of Green project, a combination of public fundraising and Modesto City Schools contributions, resulted in the synthetic turf at Downey in 2007. Sounds like we need Fields of Green Part II.

▪ Unless my memory has blanked out: Fields of Green also was supposed to cover Johansen’s Dan Gonsalves Stadium.

▪ His knees are battered but he can’t be stopped: Nevada center and team captain Matt Galas (Central Catholic). The Wolf Pack looks bowl-worthy at 6-3.

▪ Cautionary note for Nevada: Too much success and it will lose coach Brian Polian.

▪ Small steps but, after last year, all steps are good: The Cal Golden Bears (5-4) and their first win at Oregon State in eight years.

▪ Cal hasn’t beaten Stanford since 2009. A breakthrough on Nov. 22?

▪ About those weekly updates of the top four ranked teams: Irrelevant until the week it counts.

▪ Former 49ers coach George Seifert on Colin Kaepernick: “He’s certainly the runner Steve (Young) was and beyond. Now I see him looking first to pass before he runs.”

▪ He’s looking, of course, because he’s about to be driven to the ground (14 sacks in the last two games).

▪ Got a feeling: The 49ers, who dumped Steve Mariucci after a division title and playoff win, are about to make the same mistake with Jim Harbaugh.

▪ The Mariucci mess only cost the 49ers nearly a decade in the NFL wilderness.

▪ Question for Raider Nation: Is Tony Sparano’s 0-4 better than Dennis Allen’s 0-4?

▪ From here: Yes, but the numbers don’t change.

▪ He’s due for a big punt return and it could happen in front of friends Sunday in Oakland: The Broncos’ Isaiah Burse (Modesto Christian, Fresno State).

▪ The best trade never made: Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors.

▪ It’s not a coincidence that the Warriors (4-0) are making smart personnel decisions with Jerry West as an advisor.

▪ Wonder if anyone has noticed: The Kings (4-1) off to their best start in a decade.

▪ Few sympathy pains felt around the NBA: The Lakers (0-5) and their worst start since 1957 in Minneapolis.

▪ He rehabbed a bad knee for two years but finally was forced to retire: The 49ers’ Marcus Lattimore, a great running back at South Carolina.

▪ The Dodgers have gone all-sabermetrics with the hiring of Andrew Friedman and ex-Athletics numbers-cruncher Farhan Zaidi. Soon we’ll know how analytics merge with through-the-roof payroll.

▪ Vin Scully, 87 later this month, says he’s OK with breaking in a young announcer. He remembers how Red Barber mentored him.

▪ Indiana quarterback Nate Sudfeld (Modesto Christian), out with a shoulder injury, showed his baseball allegiance through a tweet before Game 7 of the World Series: “Let’s Go Giants!”

▪ Giants fans before October: Don’t have to sign Pablo Sandoval. After October: Sign him NOW!!!

▪ Remembering the late Bill Fraser, the longtime Long Beach City coach whose Vikings enjoyed success over the years at the MJC Tournament.

▪ Felt bad for the Modesto and Davis players who had their preparation cut short due to lousy field conditions. High school football venues need some TLC in this city. Anyone out there willing to help?

Bee staff writer Ron Agostini can be reached at or (209) 578-2302. Follow him on Twitter @ModBeeSports.