Doug Robinson: Former Utah speedster Cal Beck finds new identity outside of football

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Brown77 Eagle Mountain, UT
    Sept. 24, 2012 10:45 a.m.

    I ran track against Cal in high school and he was always a classy guy. I always wondered what happened to him, I am glad to hear is doing well.

  • Cougar Passion Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 14, 2012 2:16 p.m.

    What a terrific story. The only problem I have with it, DRob, is that I don't consider 36 years old to be middle-aged. Once past 40-45 (as I am), then sure. But I doubt Cal feels himself middle-aged. I certainly hope not.

  • Qwest Perfected Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 9:49 p.m.

    I remember Cal's returns very well - defenses would come up on him thinking they had an angle only to see him fly bye.

    This was a great story I'm so glad to hear about what he has done with his life. It could have turned out so much worse but now he is making a positive impact in kids lives. Something truly more important than football.

    Thanks for everything Cal!

    Go Utes!

  • runnerguy50 Virginia Beach, Va
    Sept. 13, 2012 8:35 p.m.

    Great job Mr Hill. You come off as a caring loving person.

  • mountainlocal Brooklyn, NY
    Sept. 13, 2012 1:02 p.m.

    Cal's return against AZ was absolutely one of the best plays in Utah history. He was a weapon. Great to hear that life turned out bright after some debilitating years.

  • SMS Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 12:13 p.m.

    Grat story about Cal Beck. I remember when he and Harold Lusk manned the defensive backfield in the mid 90s, they were awesome. Never knew much about why he had to leave football until this story. Thanks for bringing this to light. It's very cool what he's overcome and that he is doing something honorable now like teaching youth.

  • QD Murray, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 11:31 a.m.

    As a Cougar fan I did not enjoy Beck's kick returns, but I have truly enjoyed his work with our Youth in Murray. 2 years ago my sons signed up for a youth track camp that Mr Beck lead. He was great with all of them (over 100 kids). 2 years later we see him in the library and he comes over to us and address my kids asking them if they are doing anything in track. Impressed me that he would remember them and made my kids feel like a million dollars. That speaks more than any thing he ever did as a football player. Thank You Mr. Beck.

  • gatsby Murray, utah
    Sept. 13, 2012 11:11 a.m.

    I know Mr. Beck as a teacher and not as a football player. He has been a great asset to our school--Parkside--in Murray, and he encourages sportmanship and fair play, which means a lot to me and my children, who are Cougars.

    Mr. Beck, influcencing a child, as a parent and a teacher, is so much more important than any sport could ever be.

    Never doubt your influence for good

    we're lucky to have you

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 9:54 a.m.

    Great story about a great young man!

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 8:26 a.m.

    Nice to hear he had a successful outcome. So many others with similar stories don't turn out so well. Thats a credit to him and his power of positive thinking. That was very uplifting, thanks for sharing Cal. Best wishes for your continued success and happiness.

    On a different note, that sure didn't make Chris Hill look very good.

  • Go Utes! Springville, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 6:49 a.m.

    Great article! Cal was one of the resins i am a Ute fan today, i remember watching that punt return when i was just a kid and i wanted to be him. you are the man Cal

  • east of utah Saint Joseph, MO
    Sept. 13, 2012 5:48 a.m.

    Great story. Nice job Cal. I would let you teach my kids any day.

  • EJM Herriman, UT
    Sept. 13, 2012 5:41 a.m.

    As someone who had Cal in his track team for one year at Cottonwood and who has kept in touch with Cal off and on over the years I can tell you that Cal is the real deal. It's always nice to see him and to know that he has overcome adversity in his life and makes a difference in the lives of others.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 13, 2012 3:39 a.m.

    I can't believe it's been 18 years since that BYU game. That was Utah's first great team, and Beck was a big part of it.

    Moving on from football, it's inspiring to see a guy overcome a lot and find peace. Though Beck's football dreams didn't come true, his name is known in our Ute circles and that allows many people to be proud of him for his life accomplishments. '

    I am happy for you Cal Beck.

  • rvalens2 Burley, ID
    Sept. 13, 2012 12:27 a.m.

    "It is remarkable how quickly Beck was forgotten and left behind."

    Cal, here's one Utah fan who has never forgotten what you did while you were at Utah. It was unfortunate your football career had to end so soon, but what a legacy you left behind.

    For me, your kick returns will always rank among the most memorable UofU football plays of the past 30 years.

    I'll never forget sitting next to a BYU fan and hearing him say "Kick it to Beck he ain't that fast!" No sooner had they kicked the ball to you when I heard the same fan screaming, "Somebody tackle him, . . . PLEASE somebody tackle him!" which they managed to do just short of the goal line.

    Afterwards, I leaned over to him and asked if he still wanted BYU to kick the ball to you. He glared back at me and didn't say a word.

    You may be gone, but you have not forgotten by those of us who were lucky enough to watch you play during your Freshman year.

  • ImaUteFan West Jordan, UT
    Sept. 12, 2012 11:38 p.m.

    What an incredible story. As someone who has suffered from severe headaches since childhood, I can certainly sympathize with Cal. However, I can't imagine the type of pain from the debilitating headaches he has suffered. And the bitter heartbreak of losing a dream is just unimaginable.

    I can still see him sprinting down the sidelines on that return during the BYU/Utah game all those years ago. That return set up the winning touchdown and will always be remembered by true Ute fans.

    Awesome story about an awesome individual.

  • 86&90UTE Holladay, UT
    Sept. 12, 2012 11:02 p.m.

    Congrats, Cal, on overcoming so much and succeeding in life. As you've shown, life is so much more than football. I wish you many more successes and happiness. But thanks also for those awesome kickoff returns. You will always have a presence in Utah lore for your football accomplishments. Even though an ongoing football career never materialized, you have been very successful. Thank you for helping our youth and thanks for telling your story.