Here is what I think most Cal fans are going through right now, when they advocate the removal of Riley for Sweeney or Mansion-"The Riley Effect". This phenomena is described as when a freshmen qb comes in a plays lights out for a game and outplays the incumbent qb. He then doesn't play much afterwards, but in limited time, displays flashes of brilliance.
This is what happened with Riley in 2007. He plays a great game in 2007 against OSU (minus the last minute), where he made plays happen with his scrambling ability, and his strong throwing arm. I was at the game, and saw him lead a near comeback against OSU. Riley then didn't play till the Armed Forces Bowl, where he jump started the offense and lead us to a bowl victory. This series of events characterizes the Riley Effect.
But why should Cal fans be wary of the Riley Effect? We have to look closer at 2007 and 2008-what changed? The WiRs did. Riley threw to two amazing WRs in 2007-D-Jax and the Hawk. I think these two receivers were good enought to cover up Riley's deficiencies (overthrowing the ball). Look at the first TD strike to D-Jax in the Armed Forces bowl by Riley-I bet you see Jackson make an adjustment on the ball for the catch...something that our current core of WRs aren't good at yet. So Riley's deficiencies were covered in 2007 by great WRs and only became evident during 2008 with a younger, inexperience crop of WRs.
So current Cal fans are under the Riley Effect when they advocate changing the incumbent for a promising, unknown qb. Here's why making any changes will not work-
I doubt that changing Riley for another QB is going to make a difference, as we don't have a great O-line and WRs that are in rhythm with the QB. Tedford should have let Riley play all last year to develop with the young WRs, but instead kept shortchanging our future by platooning him with Longshore (ugh). Now we are dealing with Riley's growing pains that he should have figured out during a rebuilding year in 2008....so we need to be patient with Riley and let him develop with this current crop of WRs. Yanking him will only cause him to regress more.