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Cal vs. USC Reflections: Accentuating the Positives

Can we draw anything positive from Saturday's loss to the Trojans?

Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

By now, we're sufficiently numb over Cal's ninth straight loss to USC, a 27-9 humbling on Saturday. Today, your CGB Marshawnthusiasts, Jahvidticians, Folletarians, Hit Squadders, and Intern try to focus on the positives that we can take from Saturday's loss. So what positives can we draw from the Cal-USC game? Behold the wisdom of your CGB powers that be.

Wait, what? Intern? Positives? Wisdom? What the what?

Berkelium97: Mustafa Jalil made his presence felt and appears to be nearing full health. Overall, the defense did pretty well against the pass. I liked how we often stacked a DB and a safety on both Lee and Woods. I was surprised with how little Pendergast tried to blitz Barkley, particularly after last week. I recall a couple blitzes early in the first quarter but I mostly remember fairly generic four-man rushes, even when USC only lined up two WRs.

The offensive line did a decent job with run blocking. Guys not named Zach Maynard averaged 4.65 yards per rush. Why we did not run the ball more (especially in the red zone) is a complete mystery to me, however.

I was happy to see Vince D'Amato bounce back, especially after missing that first field goal. They weren't long field goals, but it must have done some good for the poor guy's confidence.

atomsareenough: Um, no particularly grievous injuries? Or... the fact that we weren't down 42-0 at the half? That Chris McCain is a joy to watch pretty much every single moment he's on the field? I guess the biggest one is that we didn't let the Barkley/Woods/Lee trio have their way with us completely. The secondary played decently well.

That's pretty much all I've got. My pump is clear out of sunshine. Look, we have been playing crapping the bed against USC for a long time, so I guess wouldn't be surprised if we right the ship somewhat against other teams. I'm fairly certain we're going to win at least a few more games over the course of the season. It's just profoundly dispiriting to see us blow an opportunity like that. The Trojans were ripe for the picking this year. We went to the red zone time after time and each time, they were the Roadrunner and we were Wile E. Coyote. I am so sick of my Golden Bears looking like Wile E. Coyote. I just want a disciplined, focused team that can steadily ground down the opponent game after game. Doesn't need to be too flashy. Just really competent. We're not very competent. It starts with the linemen. Anyway, we'll win some games, but I'm just not very excited by the team I'm seeing.

(See that? Positives. We're off to a rousing start. More pump after the jump!)

TwistNHook: Bryce Treggs always seemed to be open. I like him as a person! I think he has a VERY bright future ahead of him at Cal!

Ohio Bear: That's it? That's all you got, Twist?

Well, maybe it's more than I have. I don't know...I drew very little positive from this game. It was just an afternoon of frustration. It could have been so much worse, too, without Matt Barkley throwing those two INTs in the first half. If I had to take some positives, I guess I'll have to point to Chris McCain's effort in chasing down Curtis McNeal when he could have easily given up on the play without anyone being the wiser. The 4th-and-1 stop in the first half was a nice positive, too, from a defense that was otherwise prone to attack by USC's running game. I also take some positive, I suppose, from Vincenzo D'Amato bouncing back from the horrid day against Ohio State with 3 made FGs.

solarise: D'Amato made FGs. Happy for the kid to fight through adversity.

norcalnick: IMO there weren't enough positives to justify a post about them. And I'm a fucking sunshine pumper.

Here's a positive: we don't have to play USC again for another year. I look forward to our pantsing in 2013.

LeonPowe: Positives - Well, we didn't lose anyone to a season ending injury. The wideouts acquitted themselves well. Stevie Williams.

Vincent S: We didn't get blown out 42-0.

JahvidKnowsBest (aka The Student Intern): Bigelow. When he was in the game we moved the ball efficiently. He made the zone read running play much more effective. Also, the fact that we didn't get blown out. That game could have easily been 52-9.

Ohio Bear: Well lookie there. A positive from a guy who touched the ball five times in the game. I wonder if we should give him the ball more. I mean, it's not like the ball is heavy. And he doesn't belong to any union.

(How about you, CGB? Any other positives you see coming out of this one? Let us know in the comments.)