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Archive for October, 2021


Will the real Bears stand up?

I left the WSU game utterly despondent. That WSU team was sub-mediocre and the Bears looked downright pathetic. What has happened to Garbers? (His accuracy and decision making were horrible.) Why can’t this defense tackle? (a big on-going problem.) Why is it the offense always seems good the first few drives but stinks after that?

But then Cal put up a pretty good fight against a pretty good Oregon team. Sure it was still a loss, but at least it was a step in the right direction, right? So I turned off the TV last Saturday with some optimism.

But now I’m thinking maybe the real Bears are a team with more potential than they show, but they “play to their opponent”. What’s worse, is they play just below their opponent.

So who is the real team?

WSU preview

Ever since the departure Mike Leach, WSU has been headed the wrong direction. There’s no doubt that Leach gave the Wougs some recruiting credibility as well as his offensive style fit them well.

It’s not that much of a surprise then that new coach Nick Rolovich is struggling. There are already serious calls for him to be fired (see: https://www.cougcenter.com/wsu-cougars-football/2021/9/21/22682390/wsu-cougars-vs-usc-trojans-football-monday-after). WSU is 1-3 this year, like the Bears, but their losses were far less encouraging. Both conference losses (USC and Utah) were against teams that themselves are struggling and themselves have troublesome losses. And they haven’t been losing by single scores margins.

So there’s no getting around that this is a must-win game for the Bears if they hope to have any shot at respectability much less bowl eligibility.

I see this game coming down to whether the Cal secondary can keep the game from being a “shoot out”. I put that in quotes because I don’t mean to imply that there’s any prospect of a classic Cal-WSU 60-59 style shootout. But a game where neither team can much slow the other and an over/under of 80 perhaps being appropriate is in play.

My instinct says Cal comes out strong, WSU is already feeling the mid-season grind of a failing team and Cal wins moderately easily. The Cal secondary will have it’s struggles, but the improvements we saw in the 2nd half of the UW game will intermittently work to keep WSU in check.

Final score: Bears win 34-20.