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Cal football midseason positives: Consistent and playmaking defense carries Bears to 5-1

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GO BEARS!

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Piotr Le: Defense is back in CMS. They are hard-nosed, quick to the ball with some really sound tackling. (I do not include Booker in this because that man could carry the Rockies on his back during a game for a 5.5 ypc.) I liked how Wilson was not able to be comfortable in the pocket, nor were his passing options open. They played the #30 S&P+ offense in the nation with a QB who did not make mistakes. We were able to pressure him despite Utah being #2 in adjusted sack rates.

Keegan Dresow: Cal has won close games and needs one win for bowl eligibility. They control their own destiny. The defense has played winning football in every game this season, which is a huge improvement. This is a fun and easy team to root for with players who have bought into the system and are representing the university well. The coaches have done an excellent job building a program that will have a high probability for success over the long haul.

Nik Jam: There's a lot of potential with this team. If they hung tough with Utah, they can hang tough with Stanford, UCLA and USC. Oregon State, Oregon, and Arizona State look very winnable and all Cal has to do is win one to go to a bowl game. And hey, the Pac-12 North race isn't over but Cal probably either needs to win out or hope somebody can upset Stanford.

The defense has also turned a corner and getting some turnovers against Utah shows they're for real. This is a team that can get better through the course of the season as well as going into next season, so a potential to present a real football team is in the horizon.

KWBears: We are 5-1 and that is awesome.  We just need 1 more win to make it to a bowl game.  Our defense has excelled compared to preseason expectations - that is so encouraging.  If we can stay healthy, this is going to be a magical year for Cal fans.

Ruey Yen: Bears are 5-1 with plenty of things to play for in the second half. We control our own destiny and should have our best shot to defeat USC and Stanford for the first time in far too long. Winning those and other games that we should win, the ceiling for this team is still sky high.