Jan. 27, 2011


Rodriguez grills competition in Cooking Challenge


Pepperdine head coach Steve Rodriguez won the Top Chef award for the second straight year at the third annual Southern California Baseball Coaches Media Day/ESPN Zone Anaheim Cooking Challenge on Jan. 26 at the ESPN Zone in Downtown Disney.


Joining Rodriguez were Larry Lee of Cal Poly, Matt Curtis of Cal State Northridge, Troy Buckley of Long Beach State, Jason Gill of Loyola Marymount, Rich Hill of San Diego, John Savage of UCLA, Mike Gillespie of UC Irvine, Doug Smith of UC Riverside, Bob Brontsema of UC Santa Barbara and assistant coach Doyle Wilson of USC. Dave Serrano of Cal State Fullerton was not able to defend his award for best creativity due to an illness.


Coaches had 15 minutes to prepare entrees which were graded by a panel of judges. The theme was the slider.


Rodriguez created his Malibu Mudsliders, a Cajun burger topped with sautéed mushrooms, onions, peppers and crumbled blue cheese.


Savage claimed the Best Presentation award for his Filet de Gillespie sliders, a tribute to UCI’s head coach.


Hill won the Best Creativity award for his San Diego Paleo slider, a healthy, low-carb slider.


Brontsema earned the Best Taste award with his Ole Special. He had won the past two awards for Best Presentation.


Wilson received the Kitchen Nightmare award for his No Good sliders. For his lack of cooking skills, Wilson got a fire extinguisher, a cook book and freeze-dried food.