The California Golden Bears were not known for defense of any sort the last two seasons.
They now have a potential favorite for Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year.
Devante Downs had his second great performance against a solid Power 5 opponent, and he was everywhere in Cal’s 27-16 victory over Ole Miss. Downs earned his second Pac-12 Player of the Week Honors with another outstanding statline.
- 14 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, two sacks, an interception and a quarterback hurry. That’s basically Downs making an impact on nearly a third of Cal’s defensive plays, at the very least!
Downs was a terror for Shea Patterson, singlehandedly destroying the Rebels offensive attack for the last three quarters as Ole Miss was held scoreless for over 40 minutes. Pro Football Focus charted Downs as the top inside linebacker performer of Week 3.
Cal ILB Devante Downs rushed the passer very well against Ole Miss- topping all inside linebackers with 7 pressures on just 14 pass-rushes. pic.twitter.com/MvzZJHTmdi— PFF College Football (@PFF_College) September 18, 2017
Even Kirk Herbstreit of College Gameday and ESPN stood up and took notice. Herbie ranked Downs’s performance THIRD among all college football performers.
My performances of WK 3— Kirk Herbstreit (@KirkHerbstreit) September 18, 2017