Forty years is a long time to commit to any single task. But when it’s something you love, it becomes your life.
For the past four decades, current Cal offensive line coach Steve Greatwood devoted his life to mentoring young offensive linemen, helping them polish their craft.
On Saturday morning, he announced his impending retirement from coaching.
“It’s tough to leave this job that I love so much and a program that is on such an upswing under the leadership of Justin Wilcox,” Greatwood said in a press release. “But there comes a time when you know it’s just right to move on and that’s where I’m at in my life. It’s been an unbelievable job for the last 40 years and I’ll cherish all of the memories forever.”
The veteran coach is in his third year with the Cal program, after spending the majority of his career at his alma mater, Oregon. For 25 of the 32 seasons he spent in Eugene, Greatwood served as the head offensive line coach. He also spent two seasons with the St. Louis Rams staff and other college stints with Maryland and USC.
From 2006-15, Greatwood’s Ducks were the top rushing program in the conference, and in 2010, he was the recipient of FootballScoop’s award for assistant coach of the year.
“Steve Greatwood is one of the best offensive line coaches in the history of our game and an even better person,” said head coach Justin Wilcox in a press release. “I have the utmost respect for coach Wood and the work he has done over the last four decades. He was the first person I hired at Cal three years ago. The impact he made both on and off the field in the lives of our young men and his fellow coaches during his three seasons with our program will have a positive influence on our program for many years to come.
After three years on the Cal sideline, Greatwood plans on spending his final game at Monday’s Redbox Bowl against Illinois.
“Coach Wood has been a great teacher and mentor to all of us on the offensive line,” said junior Valentino Daltoso, a former Oregon transfer who as recruited by Greatwood in Eugene. “I will always be grateful to him for giving me the opportunity to play football out of high school first at Oregon and later at Cal. I wouldn’t be where I am today without him.”