On bouncing back following a four-game losing streak: “It’s easier to talk about resiliency after you’ve had some success, but they are a resilient group and they’ve continued to practice hard and come to meetings eager to learn. The effort has always been good. We just executed a bit better tonight.”
On overcoming some adversity early in the game: “There’s always going to be some adversity in a game. I’ve been doing this for awhile and I don’t know if I’ve ever been in a game where there wasn’t any. It would be nice to have a little less at times. But it was nice to see those guys battle.”
On Josh Drayden’s performance: “I thought he did a really good job. He tackled well. There was one drive where he had about three or four open field tackles on the perimeter, which is easier said than done against good players. It was great to see him make some of those. It was a good performance by him.”
On Devon Modster thinking he played just “average”: “I love the fact that he thinks that way. He’s a competitive guy. He was pretty efficient with the ball. I think probably he’s thinking about a few plays where we had some home runs that we didn’t quite connect on and one that we dropped, but I’m proud of how he handled it and competed. The other thing he did is he had a couple big plays on scrambles that were key in moving the ball. I thought he did a good job. I’m proud of him for battling through it. He practiced with a chip on his shoulder last week and this week, and it showed up.
On coming back from a four-game losing streak: “I think it just shows a lot of grit, coming off of a four-game losing streak, our spirits didn’t die. We came out to work every day and I think it showed tonight.”
On the importance of having McKade Mettauer and Michael Saffell back on the offensive line: “It was great. I don’t think I got sacked one time tonight, but Mike is a great leader and he makes all the right calls, and the offensive line did a great job tonight.”
On his 52-yard touchdown pass to Makai Polk: “I saw they were cover 0 and I knew it was going to be a big gain, but I didn’t know if it was going to be a touchdown or not. But right when I threw it I saw a huge hole and Makai just did all the rest.”
On what he thinks this win says about the team: “It’s awesome to get a win. Winning four games, losing four games, sheesh, we have got to get back to the trend of winning four. It feels pretty good to get a win. It feels pretty good to not be cranky up here and angry, so it’s a pretty good time to be on the winning side again. October is obviously not our month the last two years so let’s make November [our month].”
On how he felt about going against a pass-heavy offense: “I feel like it correlates with our defense very well. We have a bunch of dudes that can cover and we have a defensive line that can rush and we proved that today. We had a few turnovers, got one early, which was huge, and just being able to have people like that and have guys like that all over the field is perfect. It’s just good to be able to play like that and play fast, play physical and strap them up.”
On his vantage point for his touchdown: “It was just nice blocking by the line and the tight ends, so I just saw a crease and went with it.”
On how he felt after his first Cal career touchdown: “It felt good, it felt very good. I wasn’t trying to be too happy, trying to stay composed but it felt good.”
Jaylinn Hawkins, S
On how his interception set the tone: “I just felt like we just went out there and played with our hearts and fed off of each other’s energy and it started from practice, it started Monday. Executing in practice, practicing with energy, especially Coach gave us a good message to take with the team — play one play at a time and put passion each play we go out there. So that’s what we did and just let the rest happen.”
Josh Drayden, CB
On his play tonight: “It felt great just to be out there with my guys, it’s been a while, but just being out there and feeling the energy, feeling that passion and bottling it. To be with them and kind of turn up on the field, that was good, it felt great. It’s probably one of the best feelings in the world I have had this year.”
- Cal set a season high in points and several career milestones were set. Read all about it here.
- The weekly Novel by Nam is out.
In recent years, this Cal – WSU matchup has always been a guarantee for wacky shenanigans – everyone remembers the 2017 game, played in the smoke of a wildfire, and the 2014 game that got a special teams coach fired and a losing QB who threw for nearly 800 yards.
What they might not remember, or choose not to remember, was the WSU game last year that the Bears controlled the whole way, only to lose on the last-minute heroics of Gardner Minshew. For a large chunk of this one, it seemed as if 2018 was going to be the closest analogue, not the thorough beatdown of 2017. WSU hung around within a score for most of the game, and averaged nearly 6 YPP, only to consistently blow it with penalties and self-inflicted errors. It really wasn’t until Makai Polk’s tunnel screen touchdown that the game was put on ice.
Everything else in between the opening whistle and that point was the way winning football looks under Wilcox: ugly, but effective.
- Five players with unfamiliar names were the stars of Saturday’s win.
- Instant analysis from The Daily Cal’s Emily Ohman, includes an MVP award to... Beau Baldwin??
- Cal’s next opponent is USC... who looked pretty darn good on Saturday.