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Thursday night is Bear Territory: Cal vs. USC pregame thread

Cal has lost 10 straight to USC. Can the Bears end this painful streak?

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports


Thursday, Nov. 13 | 6:00 pm PT
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum | Los Angeles, CA
TV: ESPN - Rece Davis (Play by Play), Jesse Palmer (Analyst) Samantha Ponder (Sideline)
National Radio: ESPN Radio - Bill Rosinski (Play by Play), David Norrie (Analyst), Joe Schad (Sideline)
Radio: KGO 810 AM - Joe Starkey (Play by Play), Mike Pawlawski (Analyst), Todd McKim (Sideline)
Live Stats: GameTracker
Live Audio: TuneIn Radio
SiriusXM Satellite Radio: Sirius (91) and XM (91)
Cal Student Radio: KALX 90.7 FM Eamonn Shannon (PlayBy-Play), Justin Allen (Analyst)
Series History: USC leads, 66-30-5
Last Meeting at USC: USC 27, Cal 9 (Sept. 22, 2012)
Last Meeting: USC 62, at Cal 28 (Nov. 9, 2013)
Current Win Streak: USC - 10 (2004-13)
Last Cal Win: at Cal 34, USC 31, 3 OT (Sept., 27, 2003)

Last Saturday, the Baylor Bears went into Norman and soundly defeated the then-15th ranked Oklahoma Sooners 48-14.  Baylor's victory marked the first time since November 2, 1991 that it defeated a ranked team on the road. On that day 23 years ago, the Bears defeated Arkansas 9-5. (Yes, 9 to 5.)

What is the significance of this?  I'm glad you asked. If you believe in omens -- and I know many of you do -- you will be interested to know what happened in Berkeley on November 2, 1991.  On the same day that Baylor's Bears defeated a ranked team on the road, the California Golden Bears throttled the USC Trojans 52-30 at California Memorial Stadium.  Cal fans had a lot of fun that day:

So, back to that omen thing. Baylor got off the schneid last Saturday, breaking a 36-game road losing streak against ranked opponents.  Cal has a dubious streak of its own that it would like to end: the Bears have lost 10 straight to USC dating back to 2003 and have lost the last six meetings with the Trojans in Los Angeles.  In light of the November 2, 1991 connection, maybe Baylor's win at Oklahoma last Saturday will give us some karmic hope that the Bears will similarly do some streakbusting and put an end to the decade of futility against USC.

I know, I know.  I'm grasping at contrived omens and such.  But this streak has to end!  We need something to latch on to, don't we?  It's so bad that while you were reading this: Jonathan Makonnen slipped on a slant route, Joe Ayoob threw another interception, Zach Maynard ran out of bounds again, Nelson Agholor returned another punt for a touchdown, the officials called Cal for an illegal formation when the penalty was really something else, and a USC receiver trapped a ball that was ruled a touchdown.

Tonight, maybe we put that all behind us.  And hey, if we do, we have more than streakbusting to celebrate.  A win makes Cal bowl eligible.  Think about that as you watch the Bears tonight.

This is your pregame thread.  Talk about omens or whatever.  Watch for the first quarter thread as kickoff draws near and move the party there at the appropriate time.


In case you missed any of this required reading:

Nick Kranz previewed the USC defense

Berkelium97 previewed the USC offense

Avinash gave you the injury report (spoiler alert: yay Davis and Lawler!)

CGB did a Q&A with Conquest Chronicles