Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

May 27, 2009
Gallery set to cruise for charity

Wanting to raise money for the families of the four Oakland Police Officers slain in the line of duty on March 21, Robert Gallery pulled out the business card of a policeman who worked Raiders games at the Coliseum and with whom he had become friendly.

His heart sunk when he saw the name on the card.

"It was Mark Dunakin, one of the bike cops that got killed," Gallery said at the team's recent mini-camp. "That was kind of a kick in the gut and it was even a bigger deal because I saw him all the time, talked to him after the games. That made it much more, you know, it hit home that much more."

So Gallery's fundraiser on June 6 now has a deeper, more personal meaning.

The Raiders left guard, who is a car aficionado, is organizing and promoting "Cruisin' For Our Community," which will raise funds for the families by way of a silent auction and raffles for jerseys and other Raiders memorabilia. He hopes teammates will join him for the cruise as well as donate their time for an autograph show. All proceeds, Gallery said, will go to the affected families.

"Every dollar," said Gallery, who will drive his recently restored 1954 Cadillac in the cruise.

The 13-mile, two-hour "Cruise" will begin at the old Mervyn's parking lot at 7177 Regional Street in Dublin at 10:30 a.m. and conclude at Los Vaqueros restaurant at 1000 North Vasco Road in Livermore, where the autograph show and silent raffle will ensue. American classic cars manufactured before 1970 are welcome to join the cruise with an entry fee/donation of $30 per car.

"This being the first time we've done this, I think if you raise a dollar it's more than what they had before," Gallery said. "So I would be very happy if we could (raise) $10,000. I think we can easily do that...any money can help. It's something good for the community...I think we can easily raise a few thousand bucks and anything more than that would be awesome."

For more information, log onto the Oakland Police Officer's Association Web Site at www.opoa.org.

May 27, 2009
PSA Time!

This Blog will also serve as a signpost for fans interested in Raiders-related activities. As such, I'd be remiss in not letting you know of the organization's upcoming Ninth Annual Youth Skills Camp, which is open to boys and girls ages 8 to 14 and set for June 13 and 14 at the Raiders compound in Alameda.

Several Raiders players and coaches, along with some Bay Area high school and college coaches, will run the two-day camp, which will include instruction in offense, defense and special teams. It will also include autograph sessions and a tour of the Raiders facility.

The camp runs from 8 a.m. until approximately 3 p.m. each day and with the $250 registration fee, campers receive a T-Shirt, gift bag and lunch. For more information, log onto www.raiders.com or www.raidersforkids.com.

May 21, 2009
An introduction to Silver and Blackdom

Confucius once said - or was it my dad? - that the only constant in life is change. So, Raider Nation, I'm sure you've noticed change is afoot at The Bee regarding the paper's coverage of Silver and Blackdom, both in the cyber and the fiber versions.

Jason Jones, The Bee's Raiders beat writer since 2006 and resident expert Blogger, has been re-assigned within the paper and is now doling out his expertise on all matters NBA and WNBA. As such, after two years of reporting on and writing about bigger picture stories on the NFL in general, my gridiron scribin' will now focus on the Raiders.

So cheer, jeer, throw your hands up in celebration or in disgust, do what you must, but this change is in effect now as I take over the Raiders "beat" and its Blog. It's a daunting task, following my man Jason, and a welcome challenge since you may remember me from the 2005 season. I took over the beat five games into Norv Turner's last season at the helm, after Gregg Bell departed The Bee, and Jason took over from me the following season.

I will do different things with the Blog in hopes of making it more interactive with readers/users. And it will be more analytical, more big picture than the mundane nuts and bolts.

In the ultra-competitive world of "life on the beat," I want to make The Bee's Raiders Blog more of a clearing house, more one-stop shopping for Raiders fans. If I have something Raider-related that is unique, you will undoubtedly find it here, along with my take on things. By the same token, I will also post Raiders news from other outlets. Consider this a Raiders "team page," of sorts, with links to Raiders news from across the Web.

It being May, it's a quiet time for Raiders reports but I'll be sure to scour the wires and the Net and put my own spin on things for your perusal. Bookmark it and make this a once-a-day Silver and Black stop as I welcome any and all feedback.

Welcome to the change. It's gonna be one helluva ride.

-Paul Gutierrez



About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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