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Cal Football vs. Oregon Report Card - BY RULE the Bear will not quit

By rule, this home neutral pseudo-road game was a showcase of what our Bears are becoming. Tons of fight and no quit but still a little undermanned. But barring some kind of an unforseen KABAM, the future looks good and it is so much better to be competitive late in games than to be out of it in the first quarter. Thanks again to everyone that filled out a report card this week and GO BEARS!

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Berkelium97: After the last couple seasons, I didn't realize we could post positive scores in these report cards after losses.  If you didn't know any better, would you think we lost the game below?

Average Standard Deviation
Pass Offense .706 .153
Rush Offense .690 .183
Pass Defense .374 .201
Rush Defense .445 .179
Special Teams .205 .165
Coaching .520 .190
Overall .600 .181
Win Chance vs. Oregon St. 63.2% (+32.2%) 18.0

Rush offense nearly eclipsed pass offense for the first time this season.  The three-headed monster Lascwerzer (sounds kinda like a WWI tank) turned in its most impressive rushing performance of the season (adjusting for opponent quality).  Grades for defense weren't great but they certainly could be worse.  Special teams continues to find new and exciting ways to disappoint us.  That probably accounts for the low coaching grades.

Our predicted chance of a win over the Beavers has more than doubled since preseason.  Oregon State's freefall and our unexpected resurgence undoubtedly contributed to that.

Now let's hand out some awards.  The pessimists are first because the Bears lost.

Sonny Yikes

Name Grade
1. ByRule 0.10 (1.4%)
2. Score was not condusive of what the ducks did! Its was over in Q2 1.80 (25.7%)
3. puresilence 2.12 (30.3%)
4. Mitchgobears 2.45 (35.0%)
5. Honka Playboy 2.70 (38.6%)

ByRule leads the way followed by Score...who may have watched a different game from the rest of us.  Our eternal pessimist puresilence earns his sixth Sonny Yikes award of the year.  puresilence's protege Mitchgobears earned his 4th Sonny Yikes of the year.  And finally, we have an outsider in fifth place!  Oregon fan and Addicted to Quack regular Honka Playboy participated in these report cards and was not too pleased with the performance.  I'd show some sympathy, but the Ducks are probably going to another Rose Bowl so I have no capacity for sympathy.

And now for the most optimistic report cards.

Sonny Delight

Name Grade
1. Old Bear 71 5.69 (81.3%)
2. BTown85 5.12 (73.1%)
3. FireBobGeren 4.90 (70.0%)
4. mrjpark 4.50 (64.3%)
5. justbear 4.30 (61.3%)

Old Bear 71 earns a second glass of Sonny Delight while BTown85 earns a third Sonny Delight of the season.  Next we apparently have a Mets fan!  That or FireBobGeren is an A's fan who is a little behind the times.  mrjpark and justbear round out the top five.

Next we have the most prestigious award of the week, The Voice of Reason.

The Voice of Reason

Name Deviation
1. hardtobecalfan .068
2. sup_doe_library .069
3. Jonohdoh .070
4. Less Dishonor on your Cow .079
5. 1988goldenbear .084

The top four most reasonable voters are all new faces among our weekly awards.  And then in fifth we have 1988goldenbear who earns a third Voice of Reason award of the season.  Good job.

And now let's turn it over to Sam and the comments.

Sam Fielder: By rule, another drop-off in the number of report cards filled out this week.  I blame the late Friday night loss for the downtick in the responses, but it was still a good time sorting through it all again.  And kudos to Less dishonor on your cow for an EPIC profanity-laced tirade against the Pac-12 refs.  I tried to edit it so I could share it with you but it was impossible and the five paragraphs would have ended up like ""  You'll just have to take my word for it.  By rule, we were all thinking it.  Now onto your comments.

GameDay Experience

ByRule: Cal is not allowed to have nice things.

hardtobecalfan: 10:15 kickoff is way too late for east coasters :(

slaphancock: Got drunk. Thought there was a correlation between good play and whether I was drinking wine or beer at the moment good play occurred. Couldn't remember after awhile which was better for good play so double fisted it for rest of the night. Felt pretty good all around.

Bythebook: It's after midnight. By rule, that means I must start the next day off in bed.

Score was not condusive of what the ducks did! Its was over in Q2: Ya cal fans are annoying as always....

BearOverThere: Anytime I can actually watch a game here in Afghanistan is a great day...too bad they've all been for losses though.

gumibears: I work directly across the street from Levi's Stadium and building management told us to move our cars by 3pm to make room for paying cars. I didn't. I should have went to the game. Free ($40) parking with a $35 ticket would have been a steal. Too bad we didn't steal this game. I rushed home at 6pm. Traffic really isn't that bad leaving even on gamedays.

wifeisatroj: Good to see some Oregonians come to help feed the California economy. Possible that the stadium drew a few more fans.

Mitchgobears: Pac refs are the worst ever. During one of the last Cal drives ore gone had 12 players on the field twice and don't make the call. This was confirmed by the ore gone fan sitting next to me. Not to mention the poor decisions the refs DID make.

Kscott: I personally don't like giving up home field advantage for the novelty of playing in Levi's Stadium.

sacman701: Stupid idea to basically give up a home game. We should only play in that stadium if it's a designated road game against San Jose State.

PRD74: Levi Stadium for college football - sucks. Drunk Oregon fans - suck. The Oregon Marching Band - wow, where did they get their uniforms? Target Clearance rack? Overall, the experience was about as much fun as going to Qualcomm stadium for a bowl game. The student section was pretty full and the Cal fans who showed up were pretty die hard having to put up with the sh*t the Athletic Department handed us. Against such a highly ranked team we did pretty well.

califorleanian: Great to see the Golden Bears on national television so I can watch in New Orleans! Not so great to be surrounded by people who don't know or care about Cal and Pac-12 football. Their loss!

BrooklynBear: Why was Langford able to kick out of the end zone in the 3rd quarter but unable to the other 3 quarters such that ST had to squib quick. WILL CAL ST have to squib kick in EVERY GAME GOING FORWARD? In the history of CFB, how many teams have won a game where the other team started at the 45 yard line (on average)?

FiatLux: Watched at the sports book at the Cosmopolitan in Vegas.  It was actually a lot more fun than I thought that would be.  I bet the over and at 79 felt really good about it.  When the combined halftime score was 66, I felt REALLY good about that bet!  I was kicking myself because I was going to go really all in on that when I placed the bet.  But still, I'll take it!

For what it's worth, the place actually looked decent on TV.  Lower bowl looked  relatively full and looked like a decent crowd up top.

1988goldenbear: The commentators were terrible. I guess Cal will get treated like a second tier team until proven otherwise. They did have some good things to say about Goff and Lasco, and rightfully so.

Mal: 55,000+ attended. Sure, the World Series *might* have been a factor but I really doubt it.  A "home" game at a stadium 45 miles away from campus, at a stadium you've never played in, on a Friday night no less, is not a great idea.  I heard the crowd was almost 50/50 blue vs green, True? The worst decision Sandy made in her tenure at Cal. Ok, maybe trying to cut sports was the worst, but this is a close second.

OldBear71: Loved Leading, and hanging with Oregon in 1st Q!

Loved getting stops on the Nikes

Loved the end zone pick!

Loved being in the game in the fourth Q!

Was awake four hours later than usual to see the end. That may cloud my judgement just a teeny bit.

sup_doe_library: Levi's was a mistake, have no idea why we would trade a rowdy, rockin memorial stadium for an empty, soulless venue that has nothing to do with us. Stadium looked like a Stanfurd home game on a night where Cal could have used the familiarity, home support of the friendly confines of Kabam Field at CMS.

#pac12refs really outdid themselves this game: Goff's arm clearly moving forward when the ball pops loose unless oregon DE has semivisible hand that popped it loose before and only the refs can see it. the Klaw2nice "By-Rule" call was horsesh*t, because i guess catching, turning upfield is not a "football move" (hold on to the ball Kenny!), and the Enwere spot...

In a normal week of CFB i might just chalk it up to P12Refs doing their thing--but after watching Ohio State get their GW FG gifted to them, is it too early for the conspiracy theories? Conference by conference, the angels in zebra clothes gift their conference's best teams extra opportunities because PLAYOFFFFFF?

Jonohdoh: Went into this game just wanting to see us put up a fight. And Fight we did. UCLA couldn't do anything against Oreg, and we appeared to move around rather freely. Other than a couple botched plays, we did our thing! Proud of the Bears.

Pass Offense

Honka Playboy: if there had been a semblance of blocking, the night would have been different. Goff through some really nice balls under incredible pressure

BearOverThere:The passing lives and dies by Goff, and it was plain to see in the game. He kept them in it most of the game but started losing his touch towards the end, which killed a few drives in the second half. While it mostly had to do with the effectiveness of Oregon's pass rush, I think he looked straight up frustrated from late 3rd-quarter on, possibly because of the playcalling? Refs? Also, why were they calling pass plays to Khalfani with a cast on? A short throw in the flat might be a safe, high percentage throw for Rubenzer, but with the way the Ducks were surging into the backfield, that could've ended very badly.

heyalumnigo: Not bad considering all 4 top receivers are either out or hurt.

wifeisatroj: That was an incomplete pass, not a fumble.

califorleanian: Pretty on point. Not as dazzling numbers (td's) as past performances, but still exciting and fun to watch. I didn't see as many long bombs as in previous weeks, I'm sure a result of some receiver corps injuries. Hope we can get them patched up and back on the field healthy for some more great catches. Goff is looking better and better, more and more deserving of a healthy Heisman race push in 2015.

SchwinnBear: Goff had some spectacular plays and some less-than-optimal ones. Overall, I think he took advantage of weaknesses in the Oregon secondary to keep us competitive.

The one thing I liked in particular was the use of Lasco as a Sproles-esque WR/RB hybrid (especially that beast mode by Lasco for 30+ yards).

The one thing I would like to see more of is the use of Rubenzer's arm so that teams, when they see him, don't sell out for the run every time.

GoldenBoiler: For misery teams, the grade would be higher. Looked to me like a Goff was a bit off. There were done drops, but he also hit guys on the wrong shoulder or other slight miscues. I expect more from him, he is too good

Run Offense

justbear: Lasco and Enwere were very impressive. Lasco needs to stop jumping as he always gets his legs grabbed while in air and he falls down on his upper body hard.

alumni79: Not a Marshawn Lynch .. But it has it's moments .. Gotta remember. This is a pass oriented offense. Running has to be respectable.

Pac12 refs suck balls: Improving, but still not as dependable as I would like to see. I like that Enwere got some carries and a TD. I think he will get more and more time this year and really be featured in 2015. What happened to Coprich? Is he out for the year? I thought he would be back by mid-season?

sf-gigantes: This was beautiful. Early on especially, the run game was really working. The blocking was excellent, and the RBs were running really well between the tackles. I was super impressed with Enwere, enough so that I think he may end up being our feature back at some point in the future.

Less dishonor on your cow: Daniel Lasco was an absolute monster with 186 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns. Even down by 17 or more, Cal stuck with its ground game and it did not disappoint.

RhetoriCal: I can't help but suspect that the football gods are, for the next few weeks, going to offer the promise of a good run game only so that when the 'furd so cruelly takes it away it'll hurt more. But for now I'll be content with being happy at having a ground attack again.

Pass Defense

bythebook: The pass defense made it pretty easy for Oregon to score in general, but so did the refs, who, by rule, gave Oregon as many opportunities to score as possible. The defense pulled off some pretty epic stops, and eventually started getting to Mariotta

justbear: Good to have McClure and Lowe back in safety throughout the game. No more #42 and #88. Darius White finally looked good. He didn't look like Logan chasing opponent receivers. Still, gave up too many passes.

osodero: That was, without a doubt, the worst 3rd and 20+ defensive play I have ever seen in the history of any game I've ever seen in my life.

alumni79: Anemic .. But this is CAL! Not going to get the bigger .. more skilled types .. CALs entrance (academics) is too high. This isn't the SEC.

1988goldenbear: Little or no heat on Mariotta - no bueno. He picked us apart just like any good QB would. Gaps in the zone were exploited, rather easily.

RhetoriCal: Really, giving up that long one to Byron Marshall is the only thing I'm unhappy about. The fact that Mariota had no better a game against us than Sefo Liufao is pretty sad testament to the fact that we can make every QB look like Heisman material though. . .

sup_doe_library: Against the nation's most effecient QB and Heisman frontrunner, the defense made a couple of plays (1st pick!) but didn't play well enough to keep us competitive. That won't happen against a team like this until we get more depth. But the tackling continues to be suspect in the secondary, outside of Lowe--who might have played his best game as a Cal bear this past saturday--and needs improvement. More safety depth and bigger CB's are a must for this staff going forward.

On the DL, saw some good plays made--just not finished. Johnson is going to be a solid DE, esp in passing situations.

I actually really like the squib kicks. Our kicking team is thin and I don't understand why others are so down on the strategy.: When it's 3rd and 15+, I just assume the opposing team will convert. Even though it was Oregon, it felt like they should have abandoned the run and just passed every down.

Run Defense

mrjpark: Stout when they needed to be. Gave up some big runs, but who doesn't against Oregon? That's what the option play does, it makes it hard to stop the run and punishes imperfection. We're not perfect, soooo...we got punished.

sacman701: Got some stops, but also got trucked a lot. 5.7 yards per attempt is rough, but it isn't much more than Oregon has been averaging with a frequently banged-up line.

PRD74: Our run defense at times tackled like they were tired. But, for the most part they did as well as they could against a very potent Oregon offense. Improvement again.

sf-gigantes: Lots of trouble tackling in space, but there were some plays made on run defense. McClure looked really good when he was used to stop the run game.

BrooklynBear: Not great. Royce Freeman is (potentially) 2 1/2 seasons from being a top-20 NFL pick, yet the tackling wasn't great. And then Mariota had some runs that were reminiscent of a young McNabb. Maybe he's that good or maybe the run defense enabled too much opportunity.

fuzzywuzzy: Held Mariota mostly in check. Good. That running back they have is beastly, so...the tackling needed to be Bearish, and it was more like...salamander-ish

Special Teams

hardtobecalfan: very poor. i thought tre watson did a solid job as returner. treggs' turnover was unfortunate. kickoff and punt coverages are terrible. squib kick all the time if we can't get it in the endzone.

mrjpark: What do I need to sacrifice for Cal to hire a competent special teams coach?

heyalumnigo: Lot many points on the one punt return for a TD.

Kscott: I hate giving up field position. We still seem to give up the big play. Dykes' penalty was costly on the punt.

SchwinnBear: Abysmal. Outside of a few good puts and a good runback, our ST teams (on both sides of the ball) were not clicking.

The play that comes to mind is the blown punt return that gave the ball back to Oregon when Treggs didn't signal for a fair catch with pressure bearing down on him and fumbled it towards the end zone to set up an easy score for Oregon.

This game came down to ST miscues as both our defense and our offense were doing relatively good work

fuzzywuzzy: They sucked. Sonny aged five years in about five minutes. Made the biggest mistakes on ST

Jonohdoh: I get nervous every time we kick it to the other team. Either going to be a short squib kick, or a long kick that we can't seem to take down. Also, don't understand why Treggs didn't call for a fair catch instead of getting hit and turning the ball over to Oregon late in the game. That was the final nail in the coffin.


slaphancock: Good job all around turning the team from beer to wine. But really there need sto be more wine in red zone situations and not beer all the time down there. For instance, on fourth and long down 17, we should should have beer, but instead wine? really? Only three scores down, need to get at least one beer. So wine later.

Btown85: Better than last week, but I don't get the kickoff issue. Really.....

osodero: Other than special teams, the schemes seemed to be well worked for Oregon. And, the team didn't even give up when they could have. The problem is down to certain players taking certain plays off. It happens on both offense and defense.

FiatLux: I loved that Sonny got the penalty after that ridiculously bad call by the refs. No, the refs didn't cost us the game but they sucked none the less.

Mal: Horrible. Dykes should have ran out the clock at the end of the first half to go into the locker room trailing only by three. The turnover and Duck score made it ten points and was a big swing in mojo.

Again, the kickoff strategy sucks. Ducks started drives with great field position.

OldBear71: They are doing well getting student athletes coached up to compete with Uncle Phil's freaks of nature.

When we get a few more smart, big, fast bodies at Cal, we'll be in the hunt. Got some good dudes in the wings. Sonny & Co. will give us more happy days next season, and (maybe) a bowl this year.

Overall Performance

FireBobGeren: exceeded my expectations. i think the game was closer than the final scoreboard, but perhaps i am delusional. i hope so; i like being delusional.

gumibears: I like how even our losses this year haven't made me feel dead inside unlike last year.

BTown85: I'm proud of my Bears for hanging in there. Now invest that effort into the Oregon State game so I don't get heckled out of the Beavers section......

Mitchgobears: You can't beat the officials. I don't know how Sonny is able to keep his mouth shut and not get fined.

Pac-12 Refs suck balls: I am encouraged that they seemed to never give up. Even after the refs handicapped them in the 2nd-3rd quarters with some bullsh*t calls. We simply just don't have the depth at this point. Hopefully the young guys are getting experience and learning how to persevere this season. Next season I'm hoping to get some better quality recruits and those that are already on the team get better. I'm glad  the score wasn't 56-0 and that they fought for 60 minutes. Once depth gets better, the defense show improvement and not tire by the 3rd quarter. We need to get 1 good 300lbs DL and 1 pass-rushing 265lbs DE with long arms, two more safeties, and a lock down DB, then this defense will instantly improve.

OL needs to go back to the drawing board. Develop some meanness and toughness. Cut down on the  Rigsbee penalties. Moore looks like he regressed the past 2-3 games. Get Moore back into the groove. Get Cochran and Vincent some more playing time.

I would like to see Rubenzer do some more pass plays. Maybe a screen or one of those Tebow fake run and then pass the ball

Less dishonor on your cow: Outside of an 9 minute stretch around halftime, Cal played a competitive game against the best team in the conference. There were obviously mistakes, but hopefully most of those can be fixed. Maybe the athletics department can start hitting up alumni for donations to buy a few of the calls that keep going against us.

GoldenBoiler: Oregon is great, so I am not upset. If our defense doesn't improve next season, then I will not know how to explain it

I actually really like the squib kicks. Our kicking team is thin and I don't understand why others are so down on the strategy.: We were 1-11 last year. I talked to a bunch of Oregon fans after the game who said they see similarities in the trajectory of Cal in the last few eyars of Bellotti/first years of Chip. I am more optimistic about this team than I have been since the early Tedford years.

Thanks again to all who took the time to fill out a report card this week.  GO BEARS!