50 GREATEST GOLDEN BEARS - #48 - HARVEY SALEM
#48 - Harvey Salem - Offensive Tackle (1979-1982)
Salem was thrust into Cal's starting lineup by coach Roger Theder as a freshman from El Cerrito High School. He never left, becoming one of the few four-year starters in Golden Bear history. Salem was voted Cal's top offensive lineman on three occasions, and was an all-Pac 10 selection in both his junior and senior years. After his senior campaign, in which Cal finished a surprising 7-4 under first-year coach Joe Kapp, Salem was named to the Sporting News' All-America first team and was also named a first-team academic All-American.
My favorite memory of Harvey Salem is from the aftermath of "The Play" against Stanford in 1982. When Kevin Moen took the ball into the end zone against Stanford, many Cal fans expected the play would somehow be overturned on a penalty. I was certainly one of them, and I watched the ensuing chaos on the field with great trepidation. Suddenly Harvey Salem, the two-year team captain, thrust the Axe high into the air, having received the word from officials that the play would stand. The cannon sounded, and Memorial Stadium erupted in joy.
Harvey Salem was drafted 19th overall by the Houston Oilers in 1983, and he played ten years in the NFL, most notably with Houston and the Denver Broncos. Today he is a football and track coach at Albany HS in the Bay Area.