So, what did you see as the negatives from the Big Game?

Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE

Just let it all out here. It's a safe place. We'll get through this together. Deep breath, and so, Big Game negatives anyone?

Vincent S: Injuries, injuries, injuries. McCain, Moala, and Anderson all had to be helped off the field. These are some of our best players. Hopefully they aren't too banged up. I'll let someone else talk about the offensive line.

LeonPowe: Everything. But worst of all - offensive line.

TwistNHook: Many, many, many to list. Let's try to focus on specifics.

Here is the biggest number here:

NET YARDS RUSHING............. 252 3
Rushing Attempts............ 46 28
Average Per Rush............ 5.5 0.1
Rushing Touchdowns.......... 1 0
Yards Gained Rushing........ 265 47
Yards Lost Rushing.......... 13 44


Now, the sacks count against the rushing total (i.e. the 44 yards lost rushing). A bit foolish in my view, but it is what it is. I don't control college football stats, I just play somebody who does on TV. Even if you take away those 44 yards, Cal had 47 yards rushing. That is on 28 carries. A solid 1.7 yards a carry. That is surprising considering that we have 3 talented backs. Isi Sofele, C.J. Anderson, and Brendan Bigelow are all talented backs in their own special ways. Sofele is shifty and elusive. Anderson is powerful. Bigelow is explosive. They have been playing great recently and I was hoping to see that continue on Saturday.

Sadly, it was not to be. Yes, the .1 average per rush (while eye popping) is slightly skewed, but the real average per rush is barely better. If Cal can't run, then we rely on Maynard. And we had bad Maynard show up today.

Berkelium97: Offensive line, injuries, 1st down offense, 3rd down offense, Michael Lowe, offensive line, 3rd down defense, penalties, playcalling, abysmal clock management in the 4th, inability to take advantage of the Lobsterbacks' countless fumbles/penalties/Nunes' general derpitude, offensive line, and offensive line.

Kodiak: Oline play, poor clock management, penalties, turnovers, Oline play, injuries, lack of a pass rush, coverage breakdowns, and Oline play. It also made me very sad to hear how distraught CJ Anderson was after the game. The players really care and they deserve better.

TwistNHook: Here is another negative.

CAL      1st C47  13:08  Fumble        S46  11:33  Punt           3-7    1:35
CAL      1st C23  08:29  Missed FG     C26  07:07  Punt           3-3    1:22
CAL      1st C40  04:35  Kickoff       C48  03:33  Punt           3-8    1:02
CAL      1st S25  01:46  Punt          S04  13:47 *FIELD GOAL     6-21   2:59
CAL      2nd C20  12:06  Kickoff       S41  11:33  Fumble         3-39   0:33
CAL      2nd C10  08:30  Punt          C20  08:20  Fumble         1-10   0:10
CAL      2nd C13  08:11  Kickoff       C22  07:17  Punt           3-9    0:54
CAL      2nd C20  03:57  Missed FG     C49  02:01  Punt           7-29   1:56
CAL      2nd C21  00:21  Punt          C23  00:00  End of half    1-2    0:21
CAL      3rd C27  14:54  Kickoff       C24  13:02  Punt           3--3   1:52
CAL      3rd C40  10:58  Downs         C32  09:32  Punt           3--8   1:26
CAL      3rd C11  05:43  Punt          C37  02:54  Punt           5-26   2:49
CAL      4th C06  13:15  Punt          C42  11:39  Downs          6-36   1:36
CAL      4th C10  09:18  Interception  S12  05:14  Interception  13-78   4:04
That is Cal's drive chart. I count 7 three and outs. Cal didn't get its first first down of the game until sometime after 1:46 was left in the first quarter! Just a terrible way to start the game. And it did not get much better from there.

Unclesam22: Everyone's covered it pretty well here. There are a ton of negatives to be taken away. Clearly the Oline is not good against a decent rush, which just kills any chance of almost any play working. The penalties continue to be troublesome and frustrating. The play calling was, to put it nicely, clueless.

JahvidKnowsBest: We got completely outdone in every statistical category. So much attention is given to the skill position players, but this game just exemplified how the most important position group on the field is the O and D line. Both our O and D lines were completely dominated. 3 rushing yards, 3!!! How does that happen??? Why were we running up the middle on these guys, we knew that they were monsters up front? You nullify size by running to the outside with speed. I wasn't really surprised that they were able to run all over us as well, given the fact that USC did the same with a weaker line. DBs played pretty well considering the fact that we were getting dominated up front.

NorCalNick: Over the last two weeks the big question was if Cal's improvement was just a function of playing UCLA and Washington State, or if the players/coaching staff had figured something out or turned the proverbial corner.

Unfortunately, the Big Game gave us a very definitive answer. This is the same flawed team. Sometimes they'll be able to out-talent a team like they did against Wazzu, and sometimes they'll face a team completely focused on self-destructing like UCLA. But when they face a solid or better team playing with basic competence it's hard to maintain a ton of optimism.

Ohio Bear: There are so many and they've been chronicled here by everybody above. So I don't want to repeat them. Suffice it to say that the biggest negative of all is that we lost the Big Game again. In my fandom, I have lived through losing streaks to Stanfurd of five games and seven games. This three-game losing streak is no less painful when considering we have witnessed the stark contrast of Stanfurd's rise to prominence and Cal's decline. It's particularly bothersome that we have not even been competitive in two out of the last three Big Games.
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