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Rating the Bears: Cal vs. Colorado

Punting is winning (especially when the opponent fumbles the punt return).

Colorado v California Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Rating the Bears

Tell me if you’ve heard this one before: the Cal defense clamps down on an opponent and generally makes its life miserable while providing several scoring opportunities for a mostly ineffective offense. That’s been a recurring theme in Cal’s victories this season and it was once again the story this past weekend.

Average Standard Deviation
Pass Offense 38.6 24.6
Rush Offense 37.6 25.2
Pass Defense 87.3 10.5
Rush Defense 79.6 13.1
Special Teams 86.6 10.9
Coaching 75.0 15.1
Overall 73.7 13.5

Pass defense earned the highest scores of the week followed by special teams. That’s fitting, as Cal produced the Pac-12’s defensive and special teams Players of the Week (Ashtyn Davis and Steven Coutts, respectively). Run defense finished third and was likely dinged by allowing some frustrating third-down scrambles from Montez. Otherwise, it was a strong day for both components of the defense. Neither offensive unit had much success; in fact, the pass defense had a very rare advantage over the run offense. Nevertheless, overall and coaching both earned strong scores.

Ratings Comparison

We’ve played Colorado six times this decade and covered every outcome from blowout wins (2010) to blowout losses (2013, 2017) and some oddball OT wins in between (2011, 2014). Saturday’s win falls on the favorable side in most categories.

Comparing Saturday’s performance (gold) to other recent games against Colorado

Although the offense was nowhere near the units that scored 50+ in 2010 and 2014, the defense was nearly as good as we’ve seen against the Buffs this decade. Coaching and overall fared quite well—it’s quite obvious in those two categories which games were wins and which were losses.

This was a pretty typical performance for the Wilcox Era: strong defense, good coaching, solid special teams, and underwhelming offense.

Comparing Saturday’s performance (gold) to other games in the Wilcox Era

After 23 games, we can start to see where the data points clump together. Pass defense, run defense, coaching, and overall sit right near those clumps of data. Run offense was a bit of an outlier on the low side while special teams earned the highest score we’ve seen during the Wilcox Era.


We’re a far cry from the 26-way tie we saw following the last win, but we can still hand out some awards to the most optimistic raters.

Sunshine Pumpers

Name Rating
1. David Shaw milks his bitch tits 700 (100.0%)
1. RememberTheCalamo 700 (100.0%)
1. rocksanddirt 700 (100.0%)
4. Jacobs. 605 (86.4%)
5. BTown85 581 (83.0%)

Old Blues

We had a remarkably tight race for the lowest scores of the week.

Name Rating
1. KJ1980 355 (50.7%)
2. Got couth 363 (51.9%)
3. Rollonyoubears111 365 (52.1%)
4. drillerbear 370 (52.9%)
5. BearoutEast67 375 (53.6%)

The Voice of Reason

After seeing several new faces in the VoR award throughout the first half of the season, we’re starting to see many regulars on a weekly basis.

Name Deviation
1. sacman701 4.50
2. Goldenone 4.98
3. ABVidale 5.19
4. gumibears 5.73
5. Berkelium97 6.00

Thanks for participating and Go Bears!