Players return for Homecoming

Leanne Cave

The 2002 Bakersfield College Renegades will write their chapter for the Homecoming history book Saturday in front of some well-known athletes of years past.

And those alumni always cherish coming back to watch and see what the present day ‘Gades have to offer.

Stan Greene, who played quarterback on the unbeaten National Championship 1988 team, said that playing in the Homecoming game was one of his proudest moments as a Renegade.

“Homecoming was much more special to me because I was playing for the alumni,” Greene said. “I cherish it even more coming back and watching as an alumnus with the old timers of the past, which an old timer is what I am becoming,” he added jokingly.

Besides coming back to watch the game as an alumnus, there are other reasons why former players come back to reminisce at Homecoming.

Steve Denman, who played for the ‘Gades in 75-76, the Rose Bowl years, and now coaches for the Tehachapi High Warriors, remembers the inspired coaching he received while playing for BC.

“All kinds of players come back to see the coaches they played for, coaches like Gerry Collis, Carl Bowser and Duane Damron, just to name a few,” Denman said.

“I can’t say enough about these coaches. They treated players like individuals and with respect. They are the greatest group of coaches. The way they coached and what they taught me has a lot to do with the way I coach at Tehachapi.”

It will be an interesting game as the ‘Gades, (2-3) will face a solid Allan Hancock Bulldog team that usually gives BC fits until the final tick on the clock. Not only that, but BC will attempt to rebound from a disappointing 42-33 loss to the East Los Angeles Huskies, a team it hadn’t lost to in 29 games.

Nathan Baker, who will start as quarterback on Saturday, said he hopes that everybody is ready.

“We’ve had some tough losses and we’re pretty fed up with that,” he said. “We’ve had some time to get things together and I think everything will be in sync for the Homecoming game.

“This game is pretty big. It’s going to be exciting to play in front of storied players.”

Outside linebacker Samiar Grady hopes the ‘Gades will do well.

“We have had our ups and downs as a team,” Grady said. “We just need to all be on the same page making the plays that win the game. It’s kinda cool playing in a Homecoming game in front of older players with older stories of success.”

The Homecoming king and queen will be crowned at halftime during the game. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.