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Cal vs. Ohio State: Can the Bears score a huge upset?

Look forward to Ohio State. What are your early projections and predictions for this week's game?


Leland Wong: I don't want to let one ugly performance affect my season outlook too much and start crying doom and predicting the Buckeyes will put 75 up against us. I do think we'll struggle defensively--even if Miller and should-have-been-starting running back Carlos Hyde are out of the game--and I don't think we'll be able to keep it as close as we did last year. I think we'll see the team come out with the best they've got, ready to put up a fight against a team regardless of their ranking or perception, and keep fighting until the final whistle. That experience will be priceless heading into the Pac-12 portion of our schedule.

Sam Fielder: Boy, it is tough to be anything but really pessimistic about this game. The only hope is that tOSU comes out cocky and out of rhythm thanks to the Miller (QB) injury. I think that's unlikely though and I think they score something on the order of 40-50 points while we end up with 20-30 points. Just seems like we're too young, too inexperienced, and too sloppy to pull the upset. We'll improve, and we'll get better, so really, what I'd like to see is the players playing hard all game and really coming out and concentrating on getting better and executing.

Berkelium97: DOOOOOOOOM. Even if Braxton Miller is out, we're facing a tough, tough offense. Their O-line has something like 100 combined starts among them. Their backup QB Kenny Guiton looked as accurate, efficient, and mobile as Miller. I fear it's going to be a repeat of last year, where everyone is so focused on preventing Miller from breaking free that they let TEs and WRs slip behind them. We've already demonstrated an inability to cover TEs/inside receivers. I don't envision a miraculous turnaround this weekend. I don't think we have the discipline or the athletes to keep up with their offense.

Norcalnick: I'll say it now, and I'll say it many times over the rest of the year: Cal has an offense now that can potentially score with almost any team in the country. They'll have to be on their game - no dropped passes, no silly penalties, no missed blocks . . . but if they play their best, they can match OSU score for score.

I want to be optimistic here, but Cal has already been outplayed by a Big-10 team that probably isn't quite as good as Ohio State, and the Bears have gotten less healthy since then. Ohio State is and should be heavy favorites. College football is weird, and weird things happen. Cal seems like a team that will upset somebody this year. I doubt that Ohio State is that team.

I don't think that's the likeliest outcome, but it's within the realm of the possible. You've gotta have something to hope for, right?

Vlad Belo: Ohio State will win. I think the #GOFFENSE will be able to do some things and score some points, but I think that the Buckeyes are the more talented team and won't be overlooking us this year. Based on Cal's defensive performances in the first two games, I fear we may not be able to keep up with the points I expect OSU to score. I see OSU winning this one in a 42-24 type of game.

atomsareenough: Honestly it's hard to say. We don't really know what we're going to see (if anything) from Braxton Miller due to his injury, or if we'll see his backup instead. Maybe we have a few more wrinkles on defense and surprise Ohio State. Maybe Dykes has a few things up his sleeve that we haven't seen yet. Maybe the Buckeyes will struggle on the road. Or maybe they'll steamroll us. We're going to be a lot better on offense than we were last year, so maybe it will be a shootout. I truly don't know what to expect. There really are a wide range of plausible outcomes for this one.

Ruey Yen: Given how poor and unsatisfying the win over Portland State was, I think the Bears will come out and play much better offensively and defensively (and even take a couple possession lead to raise our expectations). The Ohio State is good enough to counter that and it will be a close game.