Sunday, August 28, 2005


What better way to mark the first of September than another session of notes on my napkin. That napkin is pretty well folded since we visit just monthly until baseball season, but let’s shake it out and see what crumbs of interest there are.

We start with the Ladies of the Spike, also known as the LBSU women’s volleyball team. The Niner sports season finally got unwrapped last weekend and 49er fandom got a look at the future and, for the most part, liked what they saw.

Both soccer and the volleys have a ton of new kids on the block. The last great volleyball class was that 1995 bunch featuring Benishe Dillard, Veronica Walls, Jessica Alvarado, Kristy Kierulff and some setter with sands in her shoes named Misty May!

The 2005 freshmen court queens accounted for a ton of offense in wins over Long Island and Sac State. Ali Daley had 25 kills in the two matches and Nicole Vargas (at 5-8 a little Debby Snack Cake version of her Mom Debbie Green-Vargas) rescued the offense, collected 80 assists and even figured in six blocks. Vargas and Daley were efficient but the work of Louisiana bomber Quincy Verdin brought out the oohs and ahs. Saturday night she had 15 kills and three knock-downs, that would be opposing players getting knocked down.

Hopefully that news will get you into the fold of the Sideline Spikers who are still collecting memberships. The most active of all the LBSU booster clubs, the Spikers run fund raisers year round, have pot lucks, sell raffle tickets and merchandise, and Saturday night crashed the President’s pad for a pot-luck. The Niners now must be queens of the road at Ohio State this weekend followed by trips to Las Vegas and San Diego.

The soccer team also has a great freshman class and will home open at 5 p.m. Friday playing those “Got Milk” girls from Idaho State. That seems appropriate since a recent fundraiser featured cows, er, ah, feeding in a corner of the field. Come early since the leading revenue sport at the U, parking, has torn out about 600 spaces next to the field off Palo Verde. New parking garages are planned but so far the soil compaction hasn’t passed the test.

Next up this tale from the road by Cape Cod League MVP and returning Dirtbag Evan Longoria. Asked how he got along as a house guest all summer in fussy New England? "You just treat their house like you would treat your own house. You do your own dishes. You do your own laundry. You don't make too much noise too late." Back on campus, Evan traded summer compliments with middle blocker ace Alexis Crimes who had an MVP summer herself with USA volleyball. Nice pair.

Time to open our notes about the capital city, Sacramento. As noted above, the Hornet volleyball team was just in town, and ironically had their coach Debby Colberg not put her sneaker down a number of years ago Sac State would have been in the Big West conference. Not now because UC Davis brings a much stronger overall program. Sac baseball was a provisional BWC some years ago.

Former Niner player and assistant Coach Don Barbara now works there and if he can get them hitting, and recruit his Northern Cal roots, he may be the head guy when veteran John Smith hangs ‘em up. Sac by the way is also the first football opponent for the Cal Bears, noteworthy since ex-LB athletic administrator Steve Holton now runs the gridiron side of the Bears program.

Quick complaint, with football coming back to TV again aren’t you nervous when ABC programmers have your game and the pull a “Little League” move and dump your contest that that Hawaii walk-off homer?

Last add thank goodness the Armada made the GBL playoffs but my favorite part of our local pro ball is Bingo Boy and Bugle girl. Bingo Boy sells cards for a buck and reminds you of the winning numbers while Bugle Girl played rousing intros for all the Japanese players. Bring her back for the playoffs!—DR. DAN

Friday, August 19, 2005


The inbox was getting a little fat for mid August so some bonus Dust while doing extras with the Angels….(who have found some pop again…)

A lot of web worriers fretted when one of the original Dirtbags went or was sent away…well you will read this here first; another former D-Bag is coming in. That would be Jon “Doc” Strauss last seen assisting at LMU and one of the really solid assistants around the southland, and very familiar with all the area opponents…

The Lion dugout got over-crowded with big name helpers such as should-have-been UCLA head coach Vince Beringhele, ex Arizona All America Robbie Moen and ex-major leaguer pitcher Doctor Tim Leary….the skipper at LMU is the often-high-maintenance Frank Cruz…Strauss was hired at the Beach in 2000 by Dave Snow after he finished his career as an occasional catcher (17 games) in 1993 and 1994…that ’93 team coming a bad bounce away from playing for the NCAA title in Omaha…Doc was a free agent for the Yankees, coached in the Cape Cod league and actually earned his LBSU degree in psychology…his wife Nickie chasing his son mighty Casey is always fun around Blair but I for one will also miss Hermanetta and Madison Barbara…--DR. DAN