We're playing a ranked opponent this week, so everybody and their mothers have predictions about the game. Unfortunately none are encouraging except for Wilner's bizarre Cal optimism this week.
Stanford 35, California 20: Stanford and Andrew Luck will bounce back with a strong performance in the Big Game. The Bears' chances hinge on QB Zach Maynard passing effectively and efficiently and he's been hot and cold all season.
- While on paper this should not be a close game, Wilner examines how the Bears can exploit the Cardinal by taking advantage of three factors: 1) the possible Oregon hangover, 2) Stanford's abundance of injuries, and 3) Stanford's inability to defend well in space (i.e. Keenan Allen). Wilner predicts a 30-24 Stanford victory.
- Phil Steele's computers predict a 15-36 loss while Phil predicts a 17-38 loss for the Bears.
- CBS' seven writers unanimously predict a Cal loss. In fact, 18 of this week's 22 predictions are unanimous; this weekend could be a snoozefest.
- Both Yahoo/Rivals writers (and a majority of their readers) predict a Cal loss.
- 18.88% of SBN's Pac-12 community picked Cal to win. Meanwhile our readers at CGB predicted a 33.2% chance of an upset.
After the jump the Big Game may move even earlier next season and Sean Cattouse looks to erase the memories of being steamrolled by Andrew Luck.
- What to watch this week: If the Bears be forced away from their run-heavy offense, will Maynard be able to lead an effective passing game?
- At the Pac-12 coaches' teleconference, Mike Riley (who played Stanford and Cal on consecutive weeks) says the keys to the game are turnovers and Maynard's ability to complement the running game. Wilner gives his assessment of the game and says if the Bears shut down Stepfan Taylor on first down (like they did against Toby Gerhart in '09--9 rushes, 24 yards), they will win.
- What's the only thing worse than a pre-Thanksgiving Big Game? How about an October Big Game? It's a possibility next season and beyond.
- Sean Cattouse, who was infamously run over by Andrew Luck last year, looks for some redemption this weekend.
- Giorgio Tavecchio reflects on the unusual number of missed PATs this season.
- SFGate remembers the 1990 Big Game upset. You're better off not reading it.
- CalBears.com has useful information for those of you attending the game.
- CalBears.com has its final set of player profiles, which first appeared in the November 12th gameday magazine. They feature: Justin Cheadle, D.J. Campbell, Will Kapp, and Mitchell Schwartz.
- CalBears.com highlights the play of several Bears in the NFL.
- Faraudo follows the Bears' win in his game thread. Just over five minutes in, Cal built a 14-2 lead and never looked back.
- CCTimes recaps the Bears' easy win over Austin Peay.
- Things will get more difficult this weekend as the Bears will Georgia and either Notre Dame or Missouri. Some redemption for that five-point half against Notre Dame would be nice...
- Seth Casiple was named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year. This is the first time a Cal player has been given that award (whether in the Pac-10 or -12 era).