Will 49ers waive territorial rights to allow Raiders to play in the City?

San Francisco Demons XFL file photo: AT&T Park football configuration during the 2001 season of the XFL San Francisco Demons. The Oakland Raiders and San Francisco will share the park during the 2019 season.

By Joe Hawkes Beamon

SAN FRANCISCO — Plans by the Oakland Raiders are on the drawing board and sources say it’s very close that an agreement between the Raiders and San Francisco Giants will be hammered out. Matter fact it’s understood there is an agreement on the table as of Monday morning.

If an agreement is made it’s almost assured because of the smaller size of Oracle Park compared to the Oakland Coliseum the Raiders would most likely sell out every home game plus the idea that it’s the Raiders last season in the Bay Area and many Raider and NFL fans will want to take a last look at the team before they leave.

At issue is the San Francisco 49ers who have territorial rights in San Francisco and will they allow the Raiders playing in San Francisco. The 49ers are said to be studying any possible financial loses if the Raiders play in the city. The 49ers who play in Santa Clara a good hour drive from the City may ok the deal as the Raiders will play their last season in the Bay Area at Oracle Park.

The 49ers are looking to see what they would benefit from the deal from having the Raiders playing in San Francisco and that the 49ers may ask for a cut on tickets and TV shares from the Raiders if they waive their territorial rights. The 49ers have not commented on the Raiders playing in San Francisco and negotiations are still on the way.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said last week that he wanted the Raiders to make a decision as to where they will play as soon as possible. The NFL wants to begin making the schedule for the 2019 season without further delay.

The Raiders who chose not to play at the Oakland Coliseum anymore after the city of Oakland filed a lawsuit against the team in December. The Raiders had a tentative deal with the Oakland Coliseum and withdrew after Oakland filed the suit stating that the suit was over the relocation to Las Vegas calling the deal “illegal” the city of Oakland is seeking million of dollars from the Raiders and the NFL.

For football Oracle Park would seat up to 40,000 fans. Oracle Park hosted football when the XFL’s San Francisco Demons who played there in 2001, The California Mountain Lions in 2009 of the United Football League, Cal in 2011, NCAA bowl games the Shriners, Diamond, Kraft and Foster Bowls in 2002 to 2013.

For UW’s Tuiasosopo, the Fight Hunger Bowl is the singular challenge

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By Morris Phillips

Washington’s plenty talented enough to hang with the BYU Cougars in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl on tap at AT&T Park.  But with Head Coach Steve Sarkisian saying yes to USC and leaving Seattle after five seasons to coach the Trojans, one has to wonder what will be the collective mindset of the Huskies’ student-athletes when they hit the field on Friday night.

Could the Huskies feel spurned by Sarkisian, or be distracted by all the upheaval?  Or will a talented UW team leap to the challenge of attempting to win a ninth game in a season for the first time since 2000 when interim coach Marques Tuiasosopo led the Huskies to a 34-24 win over Purdue and Drew Brees in the Rose Bowl?

“You’d like to think every close team… would handle it the same way, but you just never know until you go through it,” Tuiasosopo said.  “I think our seniors have done a nice job, and I think our underclassmen have done a nice job of buying into what the seniors are talking about and staying focused on the task at hand.”

One thing’s for certain: the 34-year old Tuiasosopo is the point man for the Huskies’ mindset approaching kickoff on Friday night.  The UW legend, former Raider and son of Manu, the starting nose tackle for the 49ers in their second Super Bowl victory over Miami in 1985, is a rising star in the coaching profession.  In just five short years after retiring from the NFL in 2008, Tuiasosopo has gone from assistant strength coach at UW, to position coach at UCLA under Jim Mora, to quarterback coach and now interim head coach back at Washington with Sarkisian leaving and Boise State’s Chris Peterson set to take control of the Huskies following the bowl game.

And if Tuiasosopo can exude calm, excitement and anticipation for the meeting with BYU, why wouldn’t the players?  The interim coach’s situation couldn’t be any less unsettled than his team’s with a gaggle of UW assistants already gone to join Sarkisian in Los Angeles, and Peterson reportedly set to hire Jonathan Smith, his quarterbacks coach at Boise State, for the same position in Seattle.   Tuisasosopo might be a natural fit on Peterson’s staff in any capacity, or he could take his three week stint as head man and run with it… possibly to a head job at a non-BCS school looking to corral the unbridled energy of a promising, youthful coach.

Undoubtedly, Tuisasosopo and the Huskies will get just one shot together.  In BYU, the Huskies will face a staunch defensive team led by senior linebacker Kyle Van Noy that also features a power running attack led by dual threat quarterback Taysom Hill.  The Huskies will counter with oft-injured but supremely talented quarterback Keith Price and power back Bishop Sankey, who rushed for over 1,700 yards in the regular season.

The game figures to be high scoring and close; one requiring quick-twitch decisions and gutsy play calls, rigorous work for even the most seasoned of coaches. Not only will Tuisasosopo face all those challenges, he’ll do it with an unfamiliar staff.  Meanwhile BYU Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall has held the position for nine seasons and has made bowl appearances all nine times.  The contrast in experience couldn’t be more striking.

Still Tuisasosopo faces his challenge with enthusiasm and a keen eye on his alma mater’s history.  Price and safety Will Shamburger are the only remaining players from the 2009 recruiting the class that committed on the heels of the 0-12 season in 2008, the last under Coach Tyrone Willingham.  Tuisasopo referred to the 2008 season as the lowest point in the history of the school earlier this week.  Given that, Tuiasosopo frames the challenge of chasing a watershed ninth win on Friday as an historic quest.  And that’s what experienced coaches do: set goals and demand myopic focus on them.

“Now we’re at 8-4 and my hope… is that the young guys really focus on that, not everything else,” Tuiasosopo said.

And behind those goals are the players, committed to one coach who left and being asked to devote themselves to another… almost overnight.  Needless to say, according to Tuisasosopo, it can be confusing.

“They’re growing to become men, and sometimes they need to know ‘Hey, I totally understand what you’re going through.  They need someone there to help them through and manage and navigate their emotions through this process,” Tuiasosopo said.

Morris Phillips on the NCAA: Former Raider Tuiasosopo to coach Hunger Bowl for Washington

by Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–The Kraft Hunger Bowl is back and kick off is scheduled for Sat December 28th at AT&T Park between BYU and Washington University. Friday night I was in downtown S.F. and ran into the BYU advance crew. The Cougars don’t arrive in the City until Sunday. The Cougars former head coach Lavelle Edwards was in town on Friday night.

There’s a lot of excitment downtown it’s BYU’s first appearance in the Kraft Bowl and it’s Washington’s also. It should be a great football game. BYU is having a great season. The Cougars lost games during the regular season to Wisconsin and Notre Dame. BYU is a good football team and they run the football.

Washington runs the football just as well with their running back Bishop Sankey and the Huskies are 8-12 for the regular season in the Pac 12. Then there was the coaching change for Washington as Steve Sarkisian who left for USC is replaced by Chris Peterson. Sarkisian will not be involved in this game.

Peterson left Boise State to coach the Huskies and with the Hunger Bowl in the last couple years there have been coaching changes for this game. It will not affect the product on the field it should be an exciting game. Former Raider quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo the Huskies interim coach knows the system going into this bowl game. It’s all hands on deck with Sarkisian gone and the team has to rally around the new coach for this game.

The players have to be more attentive and the assistants have to assume the responsibilty it’s not going to affect them on the field. They’ve got plenty of time to prepare and they might be able to do well without Sarkisian for this game. What happened two years ago with Illinois they came into the bowl to play UCLA with their new coach and last year a coaching change happened when Boston College came town and they also had a new coach.

That’s just the kind of timing they have in football and particuarily with this bowl game coaches are taking new jobs at this time of the year and obviously athletic directors are not interested in having somebody around whose accepted a new job who can not even coach the last few games. They get the guy out and he doesn’t coach the final bowl games and they just move on.

It shouldn’t effect Washington at all with this change and again Peterson will take over at the beginning of next season and coach the Huskies 2014 season. Peterson maybe attending this game as an observer. He might be there as a consultant but Peterson left Boise State and it’s great for Washington he was an excellent coach while he was with the Buffaloes and made a couple of BCS appearences.

Morris Phillips is filling in for Michelle Richardson this week for NCAA commentary