About time the current Biltenikoff favorite becomes an actual contender. Congrats to Chad Hansen for making the Biletnikoff Watch List!
Cal junior wide receiver Chad Hansen was added to the 2016 Biletnikoff Award Watch List for the first time in his career the Tallahassee Quarterback Club announced Tuesday. The Biletnikoff Award annually recognizes the top receiver at any position in college football and is named for Fred Biletnikoff, a member of the Pro and College Football Halls of Fame who was an All-Pro receiver with the Oakland Raiders after an All-American career at Florida State.
The recognition was the latest for the junior wide receiver that was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week on Monday among a host of other awards. Hansen is off to a blistering start in 2016 leading the nation in receptions (40), receptions per game (13.3), receiving yards (546) and receiving yards per game (182.0 ypg), while he is tied for the lead in receiving touchdowns (5).
Hansen is believed to be the first Cal player to ever record both three consecutive games of at least 10 catches and 100 yards receiving. He opened the season with back-to-back career-high-tying 14-reception contests that rank tied third on the school's single-game receptions list vs. Hawai'i (160 yards, 2 TD) as the MVP of the College Football Sydney Cup and at San Diego State (190 yards, 1 TD) before earning Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week honors among others in Cal's 50-43 victory over Texas last Saturday when he had 12 receptions for a career-high 196 yards receiving and a career-high-tying two touchdown catches while also adding a two-point conversion in the fourth quarter. His second touchdown catch was a 12-yarder from Davis Webb with 3:41 remaining that snapped a 43-43 tie and provided the winning margin.
BERKELEY --- Another home game, another victory.
The No. 21 California women's soccer team continued its winning ways at home with a 4-1 victory over the University of San Francisco Dons Friday afternoon at Goldman Field.
The non-conference finale for Cal (7-2-0) went extremely well for the home team against its Bay Area rival. After scoring four goals in one of its first seven games, the Golden Bears scored a quartet of goals for the second time in as many games against USF (3-6-0), marking the first time since 2014 that Cal has scored at least four times in back-to-back games.
Arielle Ship scored her third and fourth goals of the season by recording the first multi-goal match for the Bears this year. The reigning Pac-12 Player of the Year netted the first two goals of the game - the lone tally of the first half and the opening score of the second. Ship's first goal came in the 30th minute after she corralled the deflection of a saved Heather Walleigh shot and converted an attempt of her own. The second (53') came on a strong solo effort, taking a pass from the top of the attacking third deep into the box. Her multi-goal performance was her first since netting two scores in Cal's 7-0 rout of UCLA on October 29, 2015.
The Cal volleyball team kicks off Pac-12 play this week with its usual conference opener against rival Stanford. This will one of two versions of the "Big Spike" this season, as the Bears will also face off against the Cardinal to close the season on Nov. 25. Cal has lost eight in a row to Stanford, but before that had a four-match win streak. The Ducks feature their usual high-powered offense that ranks third in the country with a .312 hitting percentage. The Bears will be looking to snap a five-match losing streak against Oregon.
Men's Water Polo
BERKELEY - For the second straight week, a newcomer played a pivotal role for the Cal men's water polo team and earned recognition for his efforts as freshman Safak Simsek has been named Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Newcomer of the Week.
Simsek, a true freshman from Istanbul, Turkey, has established himself as an offensive weapon for the Bears in just two short weeks of competition. Most recently, he scored a combined 10 goals in four matches, helping Cal go 4-0 at the Aggie Roundup and improve to 8-0 on the season. The left-hander started with two goals against Cal Baptist, added a match-high four against Santa Clara, scored once against UC Davis and finished with three more against Claremont-Mudd- Scripps.
At Memorial Stadium, Cal outgunned Texas, 50-43, and improved to 2-1 on the season. For Dykes, it's his second consecutive win over Texas that has featured an incredibly fortunate bounce in the closing minutes. It's also, however, an impressive result — no matter the luck factor — after Cal opened up the season with a lackluster win over Hawaii and a sloppy showing in a loss to San Diego State.
So, how'd the Bears pull off the biggest upset in Berkeley since beating No. 3 USC in 2003? Let's break it down with five takeaways.