Cal coach Sonny Dykes made it quite clear in the Oregon postgame press conference that he made a few mistakes in that third quarter, when the Bears blew a 20 point lead in a matter of minutes and had to survive a dogfight to get the victory. More from the CalBears.com.
It was a crazy ballgame. It's hard to put it in perspective if you think about all of the things that happened. We got off to a good start – we had the momentum. Then the third quarter was bad. We didn't manage the field position very well – that was my fault. We gave Oregon a couple of short fields. We got the game in the fourth quarter and had a chance to put it away. The
Dykes was also quick to be upset with how the Pac-12 handled scheduling over the next two weeks. Cal had a Friday night game off the bye week but must now turn around and play a Thursday night game on the road, on six days notice (given the lateness of the game, essentially five days) in USC (who had a bye week and will have enjoyed almost 11 to 12 days off. Dykes finds the arrangement unfair for Cal.
"Tired. I think everybody in the locker room is tired – emotionally. I know I certainly am. We'll be back at it tomorrow. We have a game in six days, which is crazy. We have to go to USC in six days and play a team that's had 13 days off to prepare for us. We're going to rebound and play our tails off against USC and get ready on a short week.
@CalFootball coach Dykes called playing USC on six days rest and a bye for Trojans "a travesty"!— Todd McKim (@toddmckimsports) October 22, 2016
Sonny Dykes not a fan of Pac-12 scheduling: 'It’s absolutely nuts that we have to go to USC in 6 days to play a team that’s had 13 days off— Greg Hansen (@ghansen711) October 22, 2016
Cal has probably had two of its worst performances of the Dykes era on its last two Thursday night LA trips, starting out slow in both USC and UCLA the last two years and spending the rest of the game playing catch up.
Here are some quotes from the Cal-Oregon postgame.
Head coach Sonny Dykes
On trying fourth down conversions on Oregon:"We'd been going for it a bunch on fourth down and talking about the possibility of going for it again. This was a game we needed to try to maximize our possessions. We went for it. One time we did on a fourth-and-five and that's not by-the-book in football. We had some checks where if we got a certain look we were going to check a punt or a play. We got a look to check a play and Davis (Webb) checked the right play and we converted the fourth down. We were four-and-five on fourth down (conversions). I think if we don't go for it some on fourth down, we probably don't win the ball game. It allowed us to score some touchdowns and do some things so I don't have any regrets."
On Cal's offense adjusting to the Oregon defense:"It was a grinder of a game. They didn't let us get down the field at all. Typically, in one of our games we have a receiver that averages 20 yards a catch. Tonight they were averaging seven or eight yards a catch. Oregon did a good job of keeping us in front of them. We didn't get the ball down the field in our passing game like we normally do. We had to kind of nickel and dime ourselves to get down the field. That's hard to do if you can't run the ball. I thought our run game allowed us to piece those drives together and get in the end zone."
Quarterback Davis Webb
On play of offensive line: "I think my offensive-line blocked their butts off tonight, so all the credit in the world goes to them. This win was literally for them. We ran for 311 yards, and I had time the entire night. I was sacked one time. They did a great job protecting me tonight and giving me time to go through my progressions.
"It was a great team win. When a guy goes down of [Chad Hansen's] caliber, someone's got to step up, and our whole team did."
Running backs Khalfani Muhammad and Tre Watson
Linebacker Jordan Kunaszyk
On game-clinching interception: "Coach was raving the whole time about getting to the boundary hash. That's where they'd been throwing a lot. So I opened up to the field, and in the back of my head I remembered coach saying 'boundary hash, boundary hash. Low and behold, I went to the boundary hash, found myself the ball, and made the play.
"I kind of overran [the pass], I reached my left hand back and I almost caught it with my palm. I tipped it and grabbed the ball. I was so lost in the moment, I just heard Devante Downs screaming to get down, so I dropped to the ground. Game over."