Saturday’s game against Oregon State was really a breakout performance for the run game of Beau Baldwin’s Cal offense. At first one might be tempted to attribute this improvement to Oregon State’s weakness against the run (#95 nationally), but then you have to remember that our run game performed much worse against both Colorado and UNC, who statistically have worse run defenses than the Beavers. There’s more to Laird’s monster game than the quality of our opponent.
In this video I look at what goes into making a good gameplan on the ground. I look specifically at our 2-back sets with Malik McMorris, and the way that a lot of variety can be built into the run game even when we’re using similar formations over and over again. The takeaway is that even when it looks like we’re running the same play on multiple snaps, there are actually a ton of subtle adjustments and changes that are being made to keep the defense guessing and to let us continue piling up yards. This was the first game this season in which Baldwin did this against FBS competition, and it gives us a good example of what we need to expect going forward if we’re going to get that sixth win and a bowl appearance.