During his days as a student at Cal, Michael Williams considered it to be a special coup that he knew someone with keys to old Harmon Gym, allowing him and his friends to play late-night pickup basketball.

As interim athletic director at Cal, Williams, 53, is now that guy.

"When I went up to Memorial Stadium and I had a pass that opened the football offices, it was unbelievable," Williams said Wednesday during his first media interview since being given the keys to operate Cal's athletic department.

"There are elements of this that are just a dream job," said Williams, a former Cal wrestler now retired from a successful career in investment management. Williams officially began his job Wednesday as interim replacement for Sandy Barbour.

  • Cal's football season opener Aug. 30 at Northwestern has been set for a 12:30 p.m. (ABC) kickoff.

  • Rachel Hanson was named Stanford's softball coach. She joins the Cardinal after four seasons as Dartmouth coach.

    Miscellany

    Alameda's Grace Na defeated Sydney Youngblood of Durant, Oklahoma, in 19 holes in the first round of match play at the U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links in DuPont, Washington. U.S. Open qualifier Lucy Li of Redwood Shores lost in 19 holes to Alice Chen.

  • Jonathan De Los Reyes of Saint Mary's fell to David Mills of Evansville, Indiana, in 19 holes in match play at the U.S. Men's Amateur Public Links in Newton, Kansas.


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  • The Earthquakes have sent David Bingham to the San Antonio Scorpions for the fall season, the former Cal goalkeeper tweeted. "Had a great time back with @SJEarthquakes but it's time to head back to @SAScorpions for the fall season!" wrote Bingham, who was on loan with the Division II team in the spring.

    Staff writer Elliott Almond and wire services contributed to this report.

    ONLINE EXTRA
    For more on Cal's interim A.D., visit www.mercurynews.com/cal-bears.