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Cal Football vs. San Diego State Report Card - You stay classy San Diego!

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The Golden Bears are now 2-0 after a good win against a perennial Mountain West power. But you already knew that. You're here to see your name in lights and to pick nits about where the Golden Bears can get better. So let's look at your report cards!

John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Berkelium97: After the last few years, I'm merely glad we beat a Mountain West team.  Beating the media's predicted MWC champion is a great step forward.  Routing them 35-7 is even better!  Clearly you all agree, as the report cards were pretty good this week.

Average Standard Deviation
Pass Offense .802 .093
Rush Offense .777 .102
Pass Defense .785 .102
Rush Defense .763 .123
Special Teams .466 .203
Coaching .783 .119
Overall .779 .087
Win Chance vs. Texas 71.41% (+18.2%) 13.1

Naturally, Jared Goff, Trevor Davis, and the passing game earned the highest grades of the week.  It was a close race, however, as all the remaining categories scored within 4% of that.  All except special teams, which regressed to the mean from the past few years.  Bizarre penalties, missed field goals, and spotty coverage all pushed the scores below 50%.  Aside from that blemish, everyone else did well.  The standard deviations were pretty low in the other categories too, which suggests that we generally agreed on the grades.

And in case your doom-o-meter isn't already blaring its sirens after we became touchdown favorites and Texas fired its AD, our predictions for a win over Texas have climbed nearly 20%!  If this weren't one of the most anticipated games in years, our first road game of the year, our first nationally televised game of the year, and a game in Sonny Dykes' home state of Texas, we might be concerned about this being a trap game.

Now to the awards.

Awards

No Editor's Choice award this week.  They aren't going to hand themselves out...

The Bears won, so we'll first recognize the sunshine pumpers.

Sonny Delight

Name Grade
1. rocksanddirt 7.00 (100.0%)
1. PalmTree15 7.00 (100.0%)
3. Fiatlux 6.59 (94.1%)
4. AlohaBear 6.50 (92.9%)
5. Ucsdgoldenbears 6.30 (90.0%)

rocksanddirt leads the way followed by PalmTree15 (that's not a Stanford tree is it?).  To no one's surprise, Fiatlux also earns a Sonny Delight award, along with AlohaBear and Ucsdgoldenbears.  This was probably an especially sweet victory for UCSDGB, who presumably lives in San Diego and undoubtedly enjoyed the tears of many local SDSU fans.

Sonny Yikes

Next we recognize the pessimists, many of whom still gave the Bears passing grades!

Name Grade
1. 10winsorbust 3.75 (53.6%)
2. Mitchgobears 3.95 (56.4%)
3. slaphancock 4.25 (60.7%)
4. danhoho 4.30 (61.4%)
4. grassbugs 4.30 (61.4%)

10winsorbust clearly has high standards for the team, so I can understand why he/she finished atop the doomsayers.  Mitchgobears finishes second and slaphancock rounds out the podium.  danhoho and grassbugs round out the top five.

The Voice of Reason

Finally we highlight those whose report cards were closest to the community average.

Name Deviation
1. Young_bear .039
2. wilderthangene .044
3. hardtobecalfan .046
4. sacman701 .048
5. GoldenBear 77 .049

Young_bear posts an impressive .039, followed by several familiar faces.  Excellent job, all.

My work here is done.  I'll turn it over to Sam and go back to lounging in one of the CGB hammocks.  It's tough working here sometimes...

Sam Fielder: A more typical set of responses this week, and you all had plenty to say about so many different things. So without any further ado, onto the comments!

GameDay Experience

Los alamos bear: In new mexico, the state without sports fans, watched the game with my wife and remembered what it was like to be back in strawberry canyon

Uthaithani: Overall a fun, exciting game and the crowd seemed very involved and excited. Go Bears!!

Ucsdgoldenbears: I watched this game in pacific beach (all sdsu fans) and almost got beat up cheering for our golden bears. Worth it.

Oski Disciple: Glad the heat wave was between games. It was fairly comfortable. Cal crowds arrive late and leave early. Come on people, come for a full game. There's only six all year. And for the love of Oski how about wearing blue and gold.

grassbugs: Pretty laid back crowd considering it was a weak OOC opponent.

Mitchgobears: Obnoxious SDSU fans nearby that chanted "that was easy" after their first drive. Fortunately they left early and were booed the entire walk up the stairs of the stadium.

Swamphunter: What the hell was up with the weather? It went from very mild to Hawaii-esque (warm and very muggy) in about the span of a half hour.

1988goldenbear: Beautiful day at CMS! Decent crowd, nice to hear the Bear Territory chant before the game and at the end.

Mr. Gold Sky: Got stuck between a horribly offensive 30-something asshole hanging out in the student section and the most airheaded blonde I've ever met who was more concerned about dirt on a band member's uniform than the game.

Pretty solid game to watch with decent weather. Fan engagement was high for the first half but dwindled as we pulled away in the fourth quarter. I guess the defense needs to allow more points in order to keep us entertained? You'd think after consecutive years of losing the fans would learn to appreciate a big lead.

Also, they advertised Spoon Rocket and promised food to us as usual in the stands but never delivered, and as such I feel horribly betrayed.

iwastherefortheplay: If you sit near me stop selling tickets to opposing team fans!!!!

Sacgrad66: Really enjoyed the cooler, overcast day after recent heat wave. Less worries about skin cancer.

Fiatlux: Another really nice crowd in Memorial.. not quite the same energy as last week but infinity times better than anything at Stanfurd. A putrid turnout by SDSU fans...

sacman701: We're trying to sell my wife's old house and held an open house on Saturday, so I was stuck watching it on my phone. Then our data allotment ran out, so I had to just follow the boxscore and hit refresh.

Rose Bowl Oski: Students ought to be ashamed. Cal drops 70 on Grambling and shows real promise on defense, and the student section was half empty at the start of the game a week later. The team deserves better.

GoldenliketheBear: Great to be with all the Los Angeles Cal Alumni at Busby's West. Go Bears! Shout out to Gerlad for organizing and the raffle. Nam, you better show up next time.

rocksanddirt: As it was Alumni Band Day, we were hitt'n the 'valve oil' pretty hard wwwwaaaayyyyyy before game time at 2. Lots of fun to reconnect with the old folks, and meet a few of the youngsters.

PRD74: Alumni Band Day, 7 points by the opposition and only in their first drive, the most beautiful TD after the halftime I have ever seen, meeting old friends on the internet for the first time, and another Cal victory. Saturday was amazing.

gogogoldenbears: The student section MC needs to be replaced, we need someone who is more energetic and enthusiastic in leading the chants and getting the crowd going.

goffuhninny: I was in East Lansing for the Oregon game, and went to Buffalo Wild Wings to watch the early games and didn't realize that because BWW is a DirecTV contract they don't have P12 net games. Now bummed that deal didn't happen.

miniCal: Why so many people at Grambling State game, and so few at SDSU?

daveman: Great day for a game in Berkeley - weather was perfect for the east side of the stadium. The stadium wasn't quite as full as it was for Grambling State.

Pass Offense

LeonPowe: Wasn't really unleashed except for the two touchdowns bracketing halftime.  But the 3 pass (Treggs, Lawler, Harris) sequence was a thing of beauty. Or, if you prefer, the go route to Davis was pretty as well.

The 3-3-5 was generating pressure against Goff early, but I think the O-line made some adjustments

Old Bear 71: Why didn't we do the first 'drive' of second half several more times? That was a thing of beauty.

Feel very sad for Hudson. He got jobbed. And then Sonny really gave it to him on the sideline!

Jacobs.: Goff breaks records, but showed flashes of bad. First time I've thought that it would be good for him to return for his senior year. Then I saw the backup quarterback and I thought "PLEASE COME BACK FOR YOUR SENIOR YEAR, GOFF!".

Los alamos bear: Don't think Goff is going to achieve the 9 to 1 td to int ratio. But also don't think that is going to slow down the bears.

RhetoriCal: Points off for a rough first quarter and the interception which, for once, was entirely on Goff.

slims: Much better from Goff. One play where he got duped but otherwise the o-line got pretty good at adjusting to the stunting defense and ultimately the pass is what broke the game open.

COACH HENDERSON: The WRs are 1ST RATE so those dropped passes are NO BUENO!!!!

BTown85: Got better as the day went on. Only mistake on Goff's part was the INT. Most other incompletes weren't his fault

Piotr Le: Sluggish and un-characteristically bad first Q for our passing offense. Treggs seems to have a good play or two and then disappear for the rest of the game. Goff's interception was a horrible bone-headed play where he tried too hard to make splash while Lasco was wide open for a 1st Down in the flat. Later on Goff had a b-e-a-utiful throw to Hudson and Davis.

hardtobecalfan: Too many WR drops! Pass protection seemed suspect at times, but that might be due to their scheme. Jared is so good that I'm actually shocked when he throws untipped INTs.

1988goldenbear: Uncharacteristic INT by Goff in the first half, but aside from that I was impressed that he repeatedly shredded the SDSU defense with long passes. The Cal O vs. SDSU D was going to be a measuring stick because of the recent success of both squads, and it became obvious that the Cal O was the dominant side. Some heat on Goff, but it looked like the O-line got better and better as the game went on.

PatientBear: Awesome, but Jared watch those interceptions (both last week & this week looked liked misreads). The O-line also seems to be improved, but the running backs need to improve their blocking. Also, why no classic RB screens against the blitz.

Mr. Gold Bear: Somewhat underwhelming performance against a very solid pass defense. Can we stop praising Bryce Treggs so much? The plays of Davis, Lawler, and Anderson are all more explosive/exciting and it feels like half our drops come from Treggs and Goff being out of sync.

dbromon: Nice if we found our rhythm from the beginning of the game.

iwastherefortheplay: I know the 3-3-5 is difficult to block but lots of free runners at Goff. He also has a few plays where he needed to adjust the blocking and left a free runner from the edge. Maybe that's on the center in Sonny's offense but we need to fix that.

Run Offense

ironiCALly: Slow start, great 2nd half. Hope Lasco is ready for Texas. Some nice power running from Enwere.

Golden Boiler: We have some strong bruising backs, I love it. Lasco needs to keep the airborne stuff for the goalline. The team's conditioning, across the board, seems to be excellent. This was very evident as the game wore on and the OL started opening gaping holes for our backs to ice the game.

napa bear: Great game by Lasco. Enwere powering through for the first down on 4th and 2 was my favorite play of the game, and it led to Cal putting the game out of reach.

sacman701: Quiet in the first half, got going after halftime. Lasco was especially effective running to the left.

lacenaire: Better than last week but we need more straight ahead power running and less of these slow developing plays. Coach may be saving his lineman for later games but Lasco and Enwere are better cutting facing the defense.

GoldenBear77: Sonny said he wanted to run the ball when everyone knew that is what we were going to do.. For the first time in recent experience we did that.

daveman: Enwere's second effort to get that 1st down on fourth down was reminiscent of Beast Mode. Lasco ran efficiently and always moved the pile forwards when he was tackled. Most importantly, they took care of the ball and never put it on the turf once.

Fiatlucks13: Lasco had nice strong runs with great effeciency, and looks like Enwere is finding his way as well. Wishing Lasco a speedy recovery and hopefully it's not a concussion being disguised as a hip injury. Life>football.

Pass Defense

slaphancock: Good cornerback play in general after the first drive.

mendogriz: We have one. Isn't that a nice change of pace?

Old Bear 71: Two picks - three if not for a too big shoe. Man the SDSU qbs were not good and their receivers couldn't catch, Our Bears looked good making them sturggle.

Jacobs.: Wow guys - you have come such a long way! Great work!

Uthaithani: Defense was really good after that first quarter. Great adjustment and finishing plays.

mrjpark: Much improved from last year. I'm actually really happy with where they are now. We're still going to give up around 21-28 points to good offenses, but I think those are very winnable games for us now.

Dannytheman007: Glad to see the defense step up if the defense can build on this this could be the start of a wonderful season.

Oski Disciple: After the first drive they were great. It's so nice to see opposing receivers covered. Gone are the days of lonely opposing receivers with no one else in the same zip code.

ballboy: Didn't give up too many big plays in the air, but I don't think SDSU is a particularly good passing team. I think the passing defense is still to be tested.

1988goldenbear: Still not 100% convinced the pass defense will stand up to the Pac-12, but I'm liking what I've seen so far. And it could have been even better - we should have picked two more passes. Was it Michael Barton that shed that WR block on the bubble screen and hit the receiver for no gain? I can't remember that happening in the past two seasons. Really good tackling overall as well.

Mr. Gold Sky: It looked pretty good outside of a very shaky first quarter, but a lot of that was the result of the pass rush (still getting used to seeing them) pressuring a pair of thoroughly mediocre quarterbacks into poor throws. I counted at least four plays where the coverage was soft and it was only the inaccuracy of the QB that saved us yards.

Run Defense

Jacobs.: If I pretend I didnt see the first quarter, then I would be very impressed. I saw the first quarter…

Los alamos bear: Let sdsu extend some drives and run some clock, but seemed to get better as the game went on.

RhetoriCal: Not really as good as it looked, we got bailed out by some San Diego penalties.

ballboy: Solid job containing a good RB and a good run defense.

hardtobecalfan: Allowed too many 3rd down conversions towards the beginning of the game, but grew stronger as the game went on.

Swamphunter: The Bend But Don't Break™ brand run defense has returned! Considering that SDSU is a running team and they weren't able to score with their running game, I'll consider it a good performance.

Mr. Gold Sky: Held a potent running offense and excellent back to ~4 yards per carry. They get a better grade than the pass defense for shouldering the brunt of the SDSU attack and not allowing any touchdowns.

sup_doe_library: Looked solid against a good RB, but tackling could be a bit better. Lots of missed tackles and yards given up after first contact.

lacenaire: Tackling has been poor. Linebackers aren't hitting the holes very quickly. I hope Texas doesn't run all over us.

GoldenliketheBear: Much improved, with stopping the run, but there were times when SD had "Too much power". While the stat line shows very few yards (79?) There were a few that were some big chunks, and we weren't getting to the QB enough or having a consistent fiesta in the backfield. What can I say, I want total domination, but you know, you get what you can take.

Special Teams

Fiatlucks13: The tackling leaves much to be desired. There were a couple plays where i had flashbacks of last couple seasons where he even had to resort to squib kicks just so that the other team wouldn't return for a TD. We aren't as bad as that but sometimes our Special teams looked a little weak, just bouncing off the tackles.

daveman: This needs to be fixed quickly. We can't expect to win games against more difficult opponents only playing well in two of the three facets of the game.

goffuhninny: This is gonna be bad all year. Just don't have the depth for it to get any better.

Kmac: I'm terrified that we'll have to kick a field goal at some point.

sup_doe_library: The weakest link so far in this season. KO and P teams look like they're poised to give us heartattacks all season.

Wilderthangene: Kickoff coverage is a liability and will probably hurt us significantly some day. Same goes for field goals.

napabear: Coverage is pretty awful. I'd hate to lose a game because of it. More time in practice? Maybe Anderson is better in practice, but is he too anxious in a game?

PatientBear: Kick-off/punt return coverage looked soft.

Kick-offs: none into the end zone compared to last week.

Missed FG: badly wide right (WTF!?!)

Coaching

80Bear: Great adjustments to stop SDSU after the first drive.

FackMuckBrown: Adjustments! Ran the ball to kill clock!

Calbear91: Excellent response on defense and offense. Well done coaches!

Alpha1906: Nice and tidy.

mendogriz: Good adjustments to the initial difficulties on both sides of the ball.

slaphancock: Some good decisions. Going for it on 4th and 2 from the 20 was smart, since another missed field goal would have been deflating. Not going for it on 4th and 1 on our own 40 was also smart and flipped the field.

PatientBear: Except for special teams and the blown Q1 TD pass coverage, overall coaching looked good! Development of Goff, O-line to giving Goff time and RB space, and the Defense frustrating SDSU offense was heartening. Good to see Jared opting for rushing rather than chase passing records; keeps opposing offense guessing. Good to see Chase getting some snaps as a hedge against injury to Goff.

Glad to see Tony Franklin's strategy to score more points than the opposing team actually works!

Fiatlux: I AM LOVING THIS COACHING STAFF!!!!!

TrumanHugh: Great to see coaching adjustments early. We picked up on SDSU's scheme quickly and were able to pretty much control the game after the first quarter.

miniCal: I wish they would run the play clock down to like 5 seconds or less, when on offense and have a good lead. They always rush it, and it could back fire some day (as it dead against AZ last year)

Overall Performance

ABVidale: I'm still unsure about Cal's defense. SDSU isn't an offensive juggernaut. Still, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel (let's just hope it's not the oncoming train).

Fiatlucks13: Great win for the bears. Especially our defense shutting out the Aztecs for 3 full quarters. Lets keep the momentum going against the horns and stay atop the Pac12North!

daveman: Looking at the intangibles, we won the turnover battle (2-1) and the penalty battle (5-50 vs. 12-136) but our special teams needs some serious work, especially the kick coverage team.

FackMuckBrown: JUST WIN BABY

GoldenliketheBear: I like winning. Winning is fun. We should do more of this. The perfectionist says that this game showed us the big play awesome that we can accomplish and really gave an insight into some glaring weaknesses.

sup_doe_library: Great performance from a team with a lot to prove. Hope we head to Austin confident and ready to execute!

TrumanHugh: I feel a WHOLE lot better about heading to Austin now. Texas has shown pretty poor play on both sides of the ball, and Cal should handle whatever they bring next Saturday.

sacman701: This was the team's best performance since Dykes took over. The one big concern going into the season was the pass defense. It's clearly much better than it was last year, and so far appears to be average or better. With average pass D to go along with average run D, average run O, and elite pass O, this team should win at least 7 games and maybe as many as 10.

Fiatlux: 35-7. That's all you need to know.

GoldenBoiler: If you are the better team and don't have your best stuff, Cal in the first half, but can regroup, adjust and pull away from a quality opponent. That's the stuff good teams are made of. This game was probably the best all around performance of the Sonny Dykes era. The offense has been better, clearly, in games. But the defensive work and offense settling in (28 pts in about a 25 minute stretch) combined to really get me excited for this teams potential. How we handle the Texas athletes will provide a great clue as to the rest of the season.

IroniCALly: Really enjoying the start of the season. My expectations are realistically higher this year.

1988goldenbear: I think we learned a lot about this Cal team today. This was a much more credible opponent than Grambling State, and although we don't yet know how good our defense will fare against a more accurate QB, it was a really good show by the defense today. The offense sputtered a bit, but the big plays were beautiful to see. Bring on Texas!

slims: That team in the 3rd quarter can definitely beat Texas and string together some big Pac-12 wins. A performance like this against a pro-style offense should give us serious optimism for returning the Axe to its rightful home.

Uthaithani: Interesting the leading comment was that the Bears didn't play that well. Huh?? This is very likely the first team Cal has beaten in the Dykes Era that will finish with a winning record and go to a bowl. This was a far more dominating performance than Northwestern last year. We started off soft on D against SDSU but adjusted and we ended up relying on our D to keep SDSU out of the game. Number of other times that has happened in the Dykes Era - zero. The team has turned a big corner from the past two years.

Los alamos bear: Looking forward to Saturdays again. Can't ask for more

Thanks so much to everyone who took the time to fill out a report card this week. You guys are the best! GO BEARS! BEAT TEXAS!