Fall Feedback

Hear what readers had to say about Madden, mules and full-circle moments from our previous issue.

By Robyn Kontra Tanner // Photos by Joe Johnston
A person holds the fall issue of Cal Poly Magazine with John Madden on the cover

The latest of Cal Poly Magazine issue certainly stirred up some memories, smiles and some controversy among our readers. Enjoy a few responses the editorial team received from readers this fall.

“As an electrical engineering student at Cal Poly, one my service assignments was to tutor football players in math. One of the football players I tutored was John Madden. He wasn’t very good in math. I remember feeling sorry for him, thinking that without any mastery of math, he wouldn’t do very well in life. Now I know he has made more money in one year than I made in my entire professional life. Talk about a clouded crystal ball.”
Jorge Montero (Electrical Engineering ’60) in response to “Team Madden”

“I just read your article about the P painted on Bishop Peak. The story leaves out an important part. In the 80s, the climbing and outdoor community of Cal Poly considered the painted rock an eyesore. One young engineering student and climber named Doug Guillot particularly hated the paint. In 1983, he and some friends decided it needed to be removed. They hucked bags of sand and a rented sand blaster up to the base of the P wall and tried to sand blast it off. The effort didn’t work because of the pressure required to lift the sand up that far. The following year, as we were about to graduate, Doug enlisted me to help him with his next attempt. We hiked to the top of the P wall with several gallons of camouflage paints in greens, grey, and browns. We rappelled down the face and spent several hours painting over the P with colors that matched the surrounding rock. For many years, the P was totally gone. It is only reappearing as the camouflage paint wears off. By the way, many of us still consider it an eyesore and a desecration of the mountain.”
Chuck Brainerd (Mechanical Engineering ’84) in response to “Cal Poly’s Other P”

“Fun to see my dad, Ted Hendricks, on the cover of the fall 2022 issue of Cal Poly Magazine carrying Coach John Madden after Raiders Super Bowl victory. Did you know Ted’s granddaughter, Eden Hendricks, is a Cal Poly student? She just started her third year as landscape architecture major and adores it.”
Mike Hendricks, parent of a Cal Poly student, in response to the cover of Cal Poly Magazine’s fall issue featuring Jon Madden

“Why didn’t she choose mules? Much more trail wise/sure footed.”
Russ Taylor (Mechanical Engineering ‘65) in response to “Blazing a Trail”

“My son, Liam, has just started attending this gorgeous school, and as a result, this fall 2022 issue with John Madden just showed up. What a delight — thank you. I enjoyed the magazine, but even more, I adore the cover. The title font is perfect. The cover image of Madden is pure joy … I am framing the magazine cover as a gift for my son’s room.”
Jen Hayden, parent of a Cal Poly student, in response to the cover of Cal Poly Magazine’s fall issue featuring John Madden

“I’ve read the latest cover to cover already. Keep ‘em coming!”
Howard W. Braham (Biological Sciences ’72)

Want to share your thoughts on this latest edition with our magazine team? Email us at