(Written by Ken Crawford)
I wish I had better news to report, but the Bears are going to get skunked today. I was nearly appalled reading some of the comments over at California Golden Blogs… yeah they somewhat admitted they were using wishful thinking, but it bordered on delusional. I take that back, it had well crossed over the line into delusional.
The Cal defense stinks. The game starts and ends right there. Even if by some miracle the Bear offense clicks today, which I’m not sitting on a ton of confidence about, we lose this in a shootout. Last year the defense kept Cal in the game, but this is not last year’s defense. Last year’s defense had an NFL minded defensive coordinator with lots of juniors and seniors who had a number of years in his system. It was a defense that was far more sophisticated than Ohio State was used to. Add in the speed of that D, and it kept Cal in the game despite offensive struggled.
This year we have an old-school Big-10 defense, the type that Ohio State schooled all last season going 12-0 with ease (the Cal games was one of their toughest, ironically) and players who are both young and new to the system. Plus we’re decimated… heck technically we’re quadruple decimated… by injuries.
So, the only way Cal wins this game is by winning a shootout where both defenses look pathetic.
And while I’ve got a lot of hope for this offense in the long run, it’s just not clicking enough yet to do that. It struggled against a far less physically talented and less dominating in the trenches Northwestern. It just couldn’t get in rhythm. I think it’ll be even worse today with Cal’s weak offensive line getting pushed around by Ohio State. The defense will be able to come up and play press coverage to take away all the short stuff knowing the Goff just won’t have the time in the pocket to throw over the top.
Don’t get me wrong, the Bears will score some points, but not enough to win a shootout.
Final score will be an embarrassing: 23-52