Another Tuesday, another media luncheon. This week Tedford was joined by Kevin Riley and Shane Vereen, both of whom talked about the UCLA defense, potentially being separated from the LA schools in the Pac-12, and the need to avoid an 0-2 start in conference play. Not surprisingly, Tedford spent much of the luncheon talking about the defense in its matchup against another pistol offense.
On the differences between the pistol offenses run by UCLA and Nevada
"The only thing I think is different is [UCLA QB Kevin Prince] quarterback can still make some yards with his legs, [but] it's not [Wolf Pack QB Colin] Kaepernick. Kaepernick broke some long runs us and hopefully if Prince pulls it down and runs it, we can track him down for some minimal gains and not let huge plays happen on us. Against Nevada, they hit some big plays, he did, with getting around the edge and running up the middle. The lesson you learn is you need to be disciplined in this and take away all phases, you can't get caught trying to do something, make a play that's not your assignment, because sure enough, after that, there goes the guy that was your assignment. So, very important that we play disciplined and that we're aggressive but not overly aggressive to the ball and get guys out of position."
On whether he has seen his team get better at handling the pistol in practice
"I think so. Still practicing it. The next couple of days of practice are still going to be very important because we're still learning every day with it. It's tough to stop, there's no question about it, especially when you have guys running it like they have. They have two great running backs [Johnathan Franklin and Derrick Coleman] who hit it hard. And even if you get one-on-one with them and they break a tackle, it has potential to be big plays. So tackling is key, there's no question about it, that we're able to wrap up. They spread you out and have so assignment-oriented that you may be one on one, and that doesn't necessarily mean you have them stopped, because now it turns into a you-against-them, and they're very good running backs."
After the jump Cal opens as a touchdown favorite over UCLA, another recruit commits to Cal, and Tierra Rodgers talks about life after basketball at Cal, which ended before her career even began due to a rare heart condition.Football
- Cal has opened as a 7.5 point favorite over UCLA.
- From the divisional split (North-South is the favorite?) to the championship game to revenue distribution, Wilner has predictions for how everything-Pac-12 will be decided at this week's AD meeting.
- Defensive end Nathan Broussard out of Plano, Texas has committed to the Bears. Kenwick Thompson and Jeff Tedford played notable roles in recruiting him. Broussard praised Tedford's honesty and the academics of Cal. He will probably play linebacker, though he may also play the role of a hybrid defensive end-linebacker.
- Keni Kafusi should return to the field soon. He's been out since May after shoulder surgery and hasn't hit the practice field since. He's hoping to log some playing time in two weeks.
- Rick Neuheisel expects Kevin Prince (knee) to be the starter against Cal...assuming Prince actually practices this week.
- Jon Wilner looks ahead to the Cal-UCLA matchup, where the Cal defense should fare better against the pistol than it did against Nevada.
- Ted Miller has a brief preview of this weekend's game. The winner will move into the top half of the conference. The loser will join Washington State near the bottom.
Marshawn Lynch is headed to Seattle. Justin Forsett seems happy with the decision.
- Women's basketball opened the first of thirty days of practice before the season opener on November 12th against Rutgers.
- With her basketball career before she could play in her first collegiate game, Tierra Rodgers has struggled with her new role on the team. Last year she was diagnosed with arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia and cannot participate in anything more than light exercise. She and Cal have raised over $16,000 towards ARVD research.