Pacific holds Hue Jackson Appreciation Night


Pacific holds Hue Jackson Appreciation Night


STOCKTON With an hour-long line of Raiders fans extending out the door, he was the most popular person on the south concourse of the Spanos Center. More likely, the most popular person in the entire arena.He signed everything placed in front of him. From footballs to helmets to pictures of himself. To, what, no babies to kiss?In the middle of an autograph one fan asked him to PLEASE! re-sign Zach Miller. We will, he said with a bright, reassuring smile.Shortly thereafter, a Sharpie exploded in his hand. And if that was the worst thing to happen to Hue Jackson on Hue Jackson Appreciation Night at a Pacific mens basketball game against Cal State Fullerton, it was a good night. Especially with labor unrest between the NFLs owners and its players threatening to impede Jacksons start as the new Raiders coach.
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Honestly, I dont even, the labor thing, its going to take care of itself so Im not even concerned about that, Jackson told CSN California. Tonight is about being here amongst the fans, the Raider Nation and also the people here at the University of the Pacific and watching a great basketball team play tonight.So being at the alma mater, where he played quarterback in 1985 and 1986, throwing for 2,544 yards and 19 touchdowns, where he played one year of hoops, in 1986, where he earned his degree in P.E. and got his start in the coaching fraternity in 1987 as the Tigers running backs coach, must also serve as a nice distraction, right? Even with the 24-hour extension agreed upon by the owners and players to avoid for the time being a lockout.It does, but honestly, I havent even thought about it, Jackson said. I know everybodys talking about it (but) I just feel like, thats going to take care of itself. I have total faith in the process on how theyre going about doing it. And whether we get to start when we need to start, or whether we have to start later on, its going to all take care of itself.Forgive Jackson if he sounds as if hes merely whistling past the graveyard. Because really, who honestly believes there will not be a season in 2011? The real threat is in any hindering of Jacksons growth as a head coach for the first time in his careerat any level.Thats why a trio of Raiders season ticket holders from the area made sure they were among the first in the building. Just to get a glimpse of Jackson. And, of course, to get his signature and press the flesh.Were diehards, said Fernando Gomez, 35, of Sacramento. Weve been through the two-win seasons and the playoffs. That offense Hue had last year, it made it fun to be a fan again. His ability to put the ball in the end zone; put up points. Thats where we were getting celebrating mediocrity. The Nation needs this.In his first season as Oaklands offensive coordinator, the Raiders more than doubled their scoring output, going from 197 points in 2009 to 410 points last season and improving from the No. 31-ranked total offense to No. 10, on the strength of the NFLs second-leading rushing attack.
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It gives you hope, added Ollie Churchill, 24, also from Sacramento. Its fun to met the coach who gave life to the offense.Josh King, 33, and from Stockton, concurred.Its unbelievable, King said. Its a chance of a lifetime to meet the current head coach of your favorite team. Awesome.Jackson was interviewed by UOP hype lady Amanda King for the crowd at the 12-minute media timeout of the first half and he said his biggest thrill was catching up with professors he knew.This is home, he said.And at halftime, Jackson was escorted to midcourt by Tigers athletic director Lynn King and feted with a plaque, a jersey and accolades.Wow, a choked up Jackson said after. Thats all I can say. What a tremendous honor. And I havent done anything. To be presented with those things, what a challenge. Truly, I should be honoring them and hopefully I can by getting the Raiders back to the Super Bowl.Still, even with the labor strife delayed for at least another 24 hours, there were other matters of importance in the streets of Silver and Blackdom. Like the departure of left guard Robert Gallery.
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Gallery told ESPN he and the Raiders came to a mutual agreement for him to leave The Raiders said Gallery wanted 8 million to return while they were willing to pay him 2.5 million.Thats part of the business, Jackson said of losing Gallery. Its a tough deal anytime you lose guys whove been here for a long time. And Roberts been part of the process when things were good and then all of a sudden didnt go as good and now all of a sudden hes leaving with a better taste in his mouth because he did such a good job and he was a huge cog in what we did this past year.But this is a business and we know things, sometimes, decisions get made for different reasons. Hes going to go on and do great things and were going to keep going forward also.Then theres that matter of the Raiders still not listing a defensive coordinator and Jackson joking at the Combine last week that he was the DC.Im not going to call the defensive plays, Jackson howled. But Im going to make sure that we are very sound in what we do and how we go about attacking people. Thats my goal and thats my job.That process is going to get wrapped up pretty soon but we are still in a holding pattern.Jackson was talking about the purportedly vacant defensive coordinator position. He might as well have been referring to a new Collective Bargaining Agreement staving off a work stoppage.

Raiders' Mack, Osemele honored on PFWA's All-NFL team

Raiders' Mack, Osemele honored on PFWA's All-NFL team

Honors keep piling up for a pair of star Raiders. Edge rusher Khalil Mack and left guard Kelechi Osemele were named to the All-NFL team, an all-star list created by votes from members of the Pro Football Writers of America.

The association released it’s all-league and all-conference teams on Monday.

Mack is obviously deserving. He had another excellent season, with 73 tackles, 11 sacks, five forced fumbles and an interception returned for a touchdown. He also had 16 tackles for loss, the NFL’s second-highest total in 2016.

Mack is among the favorites for Defensive Player of the Year awards. The PFWA will announce their DPOY on Wednesday.

Osemele signed a record contract for an offensive guard, and lived up to his five-year, $58.5 million contract with $25.4 million guaranteed.

He was one of the NFL’s best guards, and added a nastiness to the Raiders' offensive line that helped them excel running the football. He was an excellent pass protector as well. He didn’t allow a sack, and gave up just two quarterback hits and nine other pressures in 2016.

The PFWA honored four Raiders on the All-AFC team: Mack, Osemele, center Rodney Hudson and left tackle Donald Penn were on the all-conference roster.

Boswell boots Steelers to AFC championship with six field goals

Boswell boots Steelers to AFC championship with six field goals


KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Who needs to reach the end zone when you have Le'Veon Bell chewing up yards and the clock, and Chris Boswell setting an NFL playoff record with six field goals?

Throw in a stingy Pittsburgh defense for most of Sunday night, and a multitude of mistakes by Kansas City, and the Steelers' 18-16 victory sent them into the AFC championship game.

The Steelers (13-5) needed to hold off a last-ditch threat by the Chiefs (12-5) before advancing to face New England next Sunday night for a spot in the Super Bowl. The Patriots won at Pittsburgh 27-16, but Ben Roethlisberger was injured and didn't play.

"I think it's going to be a showdown," Bell said. "Two great quarterbacks going head to head. Two of the best teams in the AFC. It's time to settle it next week."

Since 2001, the Patriots and Steelers have combined to win nine AFC titles.

Spencer Ware's 1-yard touchdown run took Kansas City within 18-16. The Chiefs at first converted the 2-pointer to tie it, but tackle Eric Fisher - the first overall selection in the 2013 draft - was penalized for holding. The next try failed.

With 2:43 remaining, Justin Gilbert misplayed the kick return and was tackled at the Pittsburgh 5. Roethlisberger hit Antonio Brown for 7 yards on third down and Pittsburgh then ran out the clock, securing a ninth straight victory for the Steelers. The Chiefs have not won a home playoff game since 1994, losing five in a row.

The scoring started furiously in the opening minutes, then the game became a kicking exhibition by Boswell, who also had six field goals in the regular season against Cincinnati. And Bell put on a virtuoso running performance, patiently finding holes and then exploding through them. He added a team-record 170 yards rushing to the 167 he had in a win over Miami last week.

"The coaches put a lot of trust in me to get the job done," Bell said of his 30 carries. "Just run hard. Just picked my spots where I could and run hard."

The Steelers became first team to win a playoff game without a TD since eventual Super Bowl champion Indianapolis in the 2006 AFC divisional round at Baltimore.

Using a no-huddle attack almost to perfection early on, the Steelers drove deep into Kansas City territory. But they bogged down inside the 5 and Boswell made a 22-yard field goal.

The Chiefs were just as efficient on a six-play march capped by receiver Albert Wilson lining up in the backfield, then slipping uncovered into the end zone for a 5-yard score.

Pittsburgh's answer came on a 52-yard heave to All-Pro Brown, who somehow was covered by linebacker Justin Houston. That led to Boswell's second field goal, a 38-yarder. He added a 36-yarder to cap a 14-play drive on which Pittsburgh again barely huddled.

A clean game up until then turned to, well, turnovers, on successive series. Bud Dupree pounded Alex Smith, whose pass shot high into the air and was caught by linebacker Ryan Shazier.

The Steelers got to the Kansas City 5, where Frank Zombo leaped to deflect Roethlisberger's throw, and All-Pro safety Eric Berry - burned for 26 yards on the previously play - picked it off in the end zone.

Boswell's fourth field goal, from 45 yards, made it 12-7 at the half. His 43-yarder, setting the franchise record for a postseason game and tying the league mark of five, came on Pittsburgh's first series of the second half. A 43-yarder midway in the fourth quarter gave Boswell the NFL record.

"It's just about doing my job," Boswell said. "Coming out here, put it through the yellow pipes. Don't really think too much. Don't think like I'm the guy or anything. I'm just doing my job and doing my one-eleventh for the team."

Kansas City's Cairo Santos got in on the kicking act with a 48-yarder to make it 15-10. At that point, 10 seconds from the end of the third quarter, the Chiefs were outgained 333 yards to 150.


Switching the game from noon local time to an evening kickoff to avert an ice storm had no effect on the crowd. Fans arrived early, tailgated in the rain as the worst of the storm never hit the area. But fog rolled into Arrowhead Stadium in the second quarter, obscuring some views from on high. Not that what was going on was worth watching for Chiefs fans.


Bell rushed for almost as many yards (101) in the first half as the Chiefs gained (106). ... Boswell's four first-half field goals tied the team record for an entire playoff game. ... Chiefs All-Pro tight end Travis Kelce had a rough game, including a big drop and a 15-yard roughing penalty in the third period.


Steelers: Head to New England for a shot at making the Super Bowl.