No. 4 Cal, Stanford Battle in 107th Big Game
Nov. 14, 2004
Game No. 10: Stanford Cardinal (4-6, 2-5 Pac-10) at
California Golden Bears (8-1, 6-1 Pac-10)
Date: Saturday, Nov. 20, Memorial Stadium
(73,347 - Momentum Turf), Berkeley, CA
Kickoff: 12:30 p.m.
Radio: KGO Radio (810 AM) with Joe Starkey, Mike Pawlawski,
Roxy Bernstein and Lee Grosscup
Television: Fox Sports Net with Barry Tompkins and Petros Papadakis
Attendance (est.): 72,981 (sellout)
This Week's Game
California (#4 Associated Press/#4 ESPN/USA Today) makes its final home appearance of the season when the Golden Bears host Stanford in the 107th renewal of the Big Game Saturday in Memorial Stadium. A sellout crowd of nearly 73,000 is expected to watch the Bears aim for their third consecutive victory in the series.
At 6-1 in the Pac-10 standings, Cal needs a win over the Cardinal to tie Pappy Waldorf's 1949 squad (7-0 in the Pacific Coast Conference) for the most league victories in school history. Cal is also 4-0 in Berkeley in 2004 and can post its first undefeated home mark - and just the 10th ever in school annals - since the 1950 squad finished 6-0-1.
The Bears - one of just two teams (USC is the other) to rank among the Top 10 in the country in both scoring offense (5th, 38.11 ppg) and scoring defense (6th, 13.9 ppg) - have prevailed in five straight games overall and can reach six straight in one season for the first time since that 1950 unit claimed its final six contests of the regular season.
Senior TB J.J. Arrington enters Saturday's tilt on the verge of breaking Chuck Muncie's 1975 school rushing record. With 1,415 yards, Arrington - who has run for at least 100 yards in all nine games in '04 - needs just 46 yards to top Muncie's mark of 1,460 yards set during his Heisman Trophy runner-up campaign.
In addition, senior WR Geoff McArthur has his sights set on Dameane Douglas' Cal record of 195 pass receptions. McArthur, who broke Douglas' single-game mark with 16 catches at Stanford last November, has 191 grabs over his career.
At quarterback, junior Aaron Rodgers tossed two more touchdown passes at Washington to give him 20 on the year and make him just the second Cal QB to have at least 19 TD strikes in consecutive seasons (also Dave Barr, 1992-93).
Defensively, senior DE Ryan Riddle picked up two more quarterback sacks against the Huskies to give him 10.5 this season, which ties for seventh all-time at Cal, but is just three away from matching Andre Carter's 2000 record of 13.5.
Stanford leads the Big Game series - the NCAA's ninth longest-running rivalry at 106 meetings - 54-41-11. After a seven-year losing streak, Cal has captured the past two games, 30-7 in 2002 and last year's 28-16 decision that secured the Bears' Insight Bowl bid. In that game, Cal trailed 10-0 at halftime before rallying behind WR Geoff McArthur's record-setting performance (a Cal-record 16 catches for 245 yards and two scores). QB Aaron Rodgers was 26-for-37 for 359 yards, and his 414 yards of total offense set a Big Game record.
A Quick Look at Stanford
After jumping out to a 4-2 start to the season, Stanford has lost its last four games to all to 4-6 on the year. Four of the Cardinal's defeats have been by five points or less, including three-point decisions against USC (31-28), Oregon (16-13) and Arizona State (34-31). Stanford rushes for just 86.9 ypg, but the Cardinal ranks third in the Pac-10 and 25th nationally in passing offense with 256.4 ypg. TE Alex Smith leads the receiving corps with 51 catches for 676 yards and three TDs. Stanford is second in the league behind USC in turnover margin at +.90, while the Cardinal leads the conference in kickoff returns (25.76 ypr), paced by T.J. Rushing's 29.60 ypr.
Jeff Tedford, California (Fresno State '83), who has orchestrated one of the greatest recent turnarounds in college football during his brief tenure in Berkeley, has led Cal to a 23-12 mark. After taking over as the program's 32nd head coach in December 2001, he transformed Cal from a 1-10 team in 2001 to a 7-5 club in `02 and claimed Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors. Last fall, Tedford directed the Bears to an 8-6 mark and the school's first bowl win - 52-49 over Virginia Tech in the Insight Bowl - in 10 years. He began his coaching career in 1989 as an offensive assistant with the CFL's Calgary Stampeders. In 1992, he returned to his alma mater, Fresno State, as quarterback coach. A year later, he was elevated to offensive coordinator, a position he held through 1997. Tedford then served four seasons as offensive coordinator at Oregon, helping the Ducks to a combined 38-10 record and a Pac-10 title in 2001. A native of Downey, Calif., Tedford was a record-setting quarterback as a player at Fresno State, graduating with a degree in physical education in 1983.
Buddy Teevens, Stanford (Dartmouth `79) owns a 10-22 record in three seasons at Stanford, and he has a 54-91-1 career mark. Prior to joining the Stanford staff, he served as an assistant and head coach in the college ranks for 23 years, most recently as an assistant at Florida (1999-2001). His other coaching stops include Depauw (running backs, 1979-80), Boston University (offensive coordinator, 1981-84), Maine (head coach, 1985-86), Dartmouth (head coach, 1987-91), Tulane (head coach, 1992-96) and Illinois (offensive coordinator, 1997-98).
Big Game Week Activities
Day Event Location TimeMonday Cable Car Rally Union Square, SF 12:00 noon Big Game Night Rally Bowles Hall, Cal 9:00 p.m.Tuesday The Big Sail St. Francis Yacht Club, SF 12:00 noon Cal-Stanford Sing-off Wheeler Auditorium, Cal 8:00 p.m.Wednesday Guardsman Luncheon Fairmont Hotel, SF 11:30 a.m. BART Presents Halftime @ Lunchtime Embarcadero BART, SF 12:00 noonThursday The Big Freeze (ice hockey) Berkeley Iceland 8:30 p.m.Friday Big Game Bonfire Rally Greek Theatre, Cal 7:00 p.m.Saturday The Big Splash (men's water polo) Spieker Aquatics Complex, Cal 10:00 a.m. The Big Game Memorial Stadium, Cal 12:30 p.m.
IKON Office Solutions Play of the Week
Each week throughout the 2004 football season, IKON Office Solutions salutes the Golden Bear Play of the Week. Against Washington, LB Greg Van Hoesen blocked a Husky punt in the third quarter that Justin Forsett recovered for a Cal touchdown.
The Times Player of the Game
Each week throughout the 2004 football season, the Contra Costa Times will recognize the Cal Player of the Game. Against Washington, freshman TB Marshawn Lynch rushed nine times for 121 yards and two touchdowns, caught a 29-yard scoring pass and tossed a 14-yard completion to Robert Jordan.
Golden Bear Notes
No. 4 Bears (8-1) Enter Saturday With Highest AP Ranking in 52 Years, Can Post Best Record Since Waldorf's 1950 Team
By virtue of Saturday's 42-12 victory at Washington, the Bears have improved their 2004 ledger to 8-1--the best start by the school since 1991, when Bruce Snyder's club plowed out to a 9-1 start and finished 10-2, ranked eighth in the final Associate Press poll and clobbered Clemson, 37-13, in the Citrus Bowl. If Cal can run the table with victories over Stanford and Southern Miss to boost its record to 10-1, the Bears can register their best regular-season record in 54 years. Not since Pappy Waldorf's 1950 club chiseled out a 9-0-1 mark has a Berkeley squad fared better. Tedford's Bears have already joined Waldorf's 1952 club in one lofty category: Cal's current No. 4 standing in the Associated Press poll is the highest ranking by a Bear team since that '52 club coached by Waldorf earned a similar distinction. Entering this weekend's Stanford skirmish, Cal is outscoring its opponents by more than three touchdowns per game (24.2 ppg) and outgaining its foes by almost two full lengths of a football field (186.1 ypg).
Arrington & Rodgers Leading Candidates for Heisman Trophy, Walter Camp Awards as Nation's Top College Football Player
It is rare when a school has someone considered a legitimate candidate for national player of the year honors. And it is doubly rare when a college has two bona fide candidates. So, Cal fans can thank their lucky stars that senior tailback J.J. Arrington and junior quarterback Aaron Rodgers are attending classes and playing football in Berkeley. Arrington, the Pac-10's No. 1 rusher, and Rodgers, the Pac-10's passing efficiency leader, have both been kept on the 'short list' for 2004 national player of the year accolades. The golden duo were two of only 15 college players to receive letters traditionally sent out by the Heisman Trophy Committee at this time of the year. And last week, they were named as two of 10 'Players to Watch' for the Walter Camp Foundation National Player of the Year Award.
Tedford Can Become 1st Cal Head Coach in 55 Years to Win 3 Straight Big Games After Ending Bears' 7-Year Drought in `02
Right or wrong, Cal and Stanford head coaches are judged by their success in Big Games. So far, so good for Cal's third-year head coach Jeff Tedford. In his first year at the helm, Tedford steered his Golden Bears to their first Big Game victory in seven years, posting a convincing 30-7 win over visiting Stanford in 2002. Then last November, Tedford added to his early legacy by rallying his troops to a come-from-behind 28-16 triumph over the rival Cardinal at Stanford Stadium. Now this week, he can become the first Cal head coach in 55 years to lead his team to three straight Big Game victories. The last Bear coach to orchestrate three consecutive wins over rival Stanford was the legendary Pappy Waldorf, who directed California to Big Game triumphs in each of his first three seasons at the helm (1947-49). The last time the Cal football team posted three straight wins in the Big Game series was 1958-60, but it came under two different head coaches (Pete Elliott in 1958 and 1959, and Marv Levy in 1960).
Nursing a 7-6 Halftime Lead, Cal Buries Washington Under35-Point, 312-Yard 2nd Half Avalanche En Route to 42-12 Win
There was unexpected drama at Husky Stadium last Saturday, as the last-place Washington Huskies befuddled the heavily-favored California Golden Bears during an evenly-played first half. Limited to their lowest opening-half scoring total of the season--they clung to a 7-6 lead at intermission--the Bears returned to the field with a vengeance in the second half. Led by Pac-10 rushing leader J.J. Arrington, freshman superstar-in-waiting Marshawn Lynch and an offensive line that is arguably one of the nation's best, California rumbled to 35 points and 312 yards in the final 30 minutes to fashion yet another blowout victory (42-12). With Arrington and Lynch becoming the first Bear tandem to rush for 100 yards in the same game since last year's 34-2 win against Southern Miss--they both dented the Husky defense for 121 yards on the ground--the Bears rushed for 304 yards and three touchdowns on the afternoon, including an eye-bulging 255 yards on 15 carries in the final half.
Marshawn the Magnificent: Lynch Scores 3 TDs & Totals 201 All-Purpose Yards on Only 12 Touches in Washington Rout
In limited action, Cal true freshman Marshawn Lynch continues to turn in dazzling performances. Perhaps his best effort of 2004 came last Saturday in the Great Northwest. With the ball in his hands only 12 times during the afternoon, Lynch scored a career-high three touchdowns--on runs of 70 and 32 yards, and a 29-yard reception--and rushed for a collegiate-best 121 yards on only nine carries. Add 51 yards on two kickoff returns and the precocious rookie accounted for 201 all-purpose yards as J.J. Arrington's understudy. And to add a little more luster to his remarkable day, Marshawn also completed a 14-yard halfback pass to his cousin, wide receiver Robert Jordan--another true freshman--in the third quarter.
With 8 Victories to Date, California is Assured Its 3rd Straight Winning Football Season for 1st Time Since 1952
After wallowing in the Pac-10's lower division for more than a decade, Cal football was in dire need of dynamic leadership following an ulcerating 1-10 season in 2001. The not-so-Golden Bears endured the worst record at the school in 104 years that season and were outscored by their opponents by an average margin of three touchdowns per game. In December of 2001, Jeff Tedford was introduced as Cal's new head coach. Inheriting one of the nation's biggest challenges, the former Oregon offensive coordinator addressed that December press conference by calmly saying, 'We plan on having a winning record next season.' That 2002 club, comprised of mostly players from the 2001 squad that had gone 0-8 in the Pac-10, proceeded to post a 7-5 record - the school's first winning mark in nine years. Then last fall, the 2002 Pac-10 Coach of the Year took a Cal team with the fewest returning starters (nine) in the nation and molded it into an 8-6 club that tied for third in the conference (5-3) and hung the season's only defeat on co-national champion USC (34-31 in triple OT). The Bears went on to claim back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in 12 years and a bowl game victory for the first time in 10 years. Now, nine games into the 2004 season, Tedford's club has already clinched the school's third straight winning campaign, the first time that has been accomplished at Cal in 52 years (Pappy Waldorf's juggernaut teams reeled off six straight winning marks from 1947-52).
Streaks Collide in Strawberry Canyon at 107th Big Game
Two teams going in opposite directions collide in this year's Big Game. Stanford, which opened the 2004 campaign with a 4-2 record and narrow losses to No. 1 USC (31-28) and Notre Dame (23-15), has fallen on hard times in losing its last four games. While Buddy Teevens and his Cardinal unit looks to halt their current slide, they face a California foe that enters this Saturday on the wings of a five-game winning streak. In fact, had it not been for a heart-throbbing 23-17 loss to top-ranked Southern California Oct. 9, the Golden Bears would be riding a 12-game winning string that would date back to last year.
Churning Out 491.3 Yards & 38.1 Points Per Outing, Bears Rank5th in Both Total Offense & Scoring in NCAA Division I-A
Scoring at least 38 points six times this year--and 10 times in the last 15 games dating back to 2003--California's lethal offense enters the Stanford game with some weighty statistics for the season. Nationally, head coach Jeff Tedford's offense ranks fifth three major categories--passing efficiency (168.30), total offense (491.3 ypg) and scoring (38.1 ppg)--and also rates ninth in NCAA rushing (247.8 ypg). The Bears' 491.3 yards-per-game average is 32.8 yards above the school's all-time single season record of 458.5, set 29 years ago by the Chuck Muncie-led team of 1975. And if Cal were to continue to lead the Pac-10 in scoring, it would mark only the second time in history that a Bear offense led the league in scoring. The first time? That Chuck Muncie team of 1975, which averaged 30.0 points per game.
Balancing Act: Cal Offense Averages 248 Rushing, 244 Passing
One of the nation's most balanced offenses will be on display this Saturday as Cal's multi-pronged attack--the brainchild of head coach Jeff Tedford--spews out a Pac-10 best 247.8 yards per game and 5.95 yards per attempt on the ground, while also averaging 243.6 yards through the air. With the conference's No. 1 rusher J.J. Arrington (157.2 ypg) and true freshman Marshawn Lynch (48.9 ypg, 13th in Pac-10) paving the way with gaudy averages of 6.9 and 8.5 yards per carry, respectively, the Bears appear on their way to repeating as Pac-10 rushing leaders in 2004. And Cal's passing game is also in good hands with junior Aaron Rodgers, who ranks first in the Pac-10 and seventh nationally in passing efficiency (163.4), completing 68.5 percent of his passes (159-of-232) for 1,977yards, 20 TDs and six INTs.
Dating Back to 2003, California Has Averaged 39.1 Points & 499.4 Yards in Winning 11 of 12 and 13 of its Last 15 Games
Picking up where it left off last season, California's dismantling its eight 2004 victims (Air Force, New Mexico State, Oregon State, UCLA, Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon and Washington) by a combined 343-125 margin only adds more juice to the rising reputation of Jeff Tedford and his Bears. One of the hottest teams in college football dating back to last year, Cal has cashed in victories in 11 of its last 12 games and 13 of its last 15 contests. During that stretch--a period in which they have mowed down the likes of Virginia Tech (52-49), Washington (54-7 and 42-12), Arizona State (51-22 and 27-0), Air Force (56-14) and Arizona (38-0)--the Good News Bears have averaged 39.1 points and 499.4 yards.
Cal's Potent Offense Scores in 7 of 9 1st Possessions This Year
Despite being forced to punt on their first offensive drive of the game last Saturday, the Golden Bears have scored on their first possession in seven of their nine games this year. The only games in which the Bears have not scored on the first possession were last week in Seattle and their sole loss of the season, a 23-17 verdict at No. 1 USC Oct. 9 .
Gregory's Unheralded Unit Taking Its Place among NCAA'sFinest; Ranks 6th in Scoring Defense, 17th in Total Defense
Under coordinator Bob Gregory, the Cal defense emerged last year as one of the Pac-10's finest units by season's end. Featuring nine new starters, that 2003 defense endured early-season growing pains and gained valuable experience that has served this year's unit well. After being gouged for 423.0 yards and 26.9 points per game in their first seven contests last year, the Bears rose up and held opponents to a mere 312.7 yards and 17.3 points per outing in the final six games of the regular season. Nine starters--linemen Lorenzo Alexander and Tosh Lupoi (albeit injured), linebackers Wendell Hunter, Joe Maningo and Francis Blay-Miezah, and defensive backs Donnie McCleskey, Ryan Gutierrez, Harrison Smith and Daymeion Hughes--returned from that 2003 group. Since a wobbly first half at Air Force in the opener, Gregory's defensive unit has shined this year. Allowing only 16 TDs in nine games, the Bear hitmen have parcelled out 13.9 points and 305.2 yards per game in 2004, which rank sixth and 17th, respectively, among NCAA Division I-A schools. Listed below is the night-and-day tale of Cal's defense, a unit that has yielded 114.8 less yards and 11.6 less points per game in its last 15 regular-season games dating back to last year, compared to the previous seven regular-season contests (the opening seven games of 2003).
A Far Cry From 2001: Bears Defense Shaves Off 25.3 Points & 141.1 Yards From Per-Game Yields of That 1-10 Team
The arrival of Bob Gregory--and a talented staff that includes Ken Delgado, J.D. Williams and Justin Wilcox--has transformed Cal's defense into one of the nation's finest. To truly appreciate the turnaround, simply peel back the pages of time to the Year 2001. That last Tom Holmoe-coached team was fleeced for 39.2 points and 446.3 yards per game, both low-water marks in the Pac-10 that season. Every year since, the Gregory-directed group has improved its standing in the league. And thus far in 2004, the Cal defense ranks second to No. 1 USC in the Pac-10 in both total defense (305.2 ypg) and scoring defense (13.9 ppg).
Bears Looking to Lead Pac-10 in Rush Defense for 1st Time Since '68; Have Held 6 of Last 8 Foes Under 100 Yards Rushing
Cal's conference-leading rush defense has suffocated 2004 opponents for only 96.2 yards per game (8th in NCAA) and 2.96 yards per carry. Only two of the Bears' last eight opponents have cleared the 100-yard plateau, with California producing stop jobs of 37 yards vs. New Mexico State, 41 at USC and 79 vs. UCLA this fall. Cal, which has allowed only 684 yards on 240 carries over the past eight games--an average of 85.5 yards per game and 2.85 yards per carry--is vying to become the first Bear offense to lead the conference in rush defense in 36 years. The 1968 defense, aptly nicknamed the 'Bear Minimum,' parcelled out 108.1 rushing yards per game. The 2004 Cal defense has not yielded a rushing touchdown in its last six games and only three ground TDs all season.
Goose Eggs Deluxe: Cal Defense Spins 1st Back-to-Back Shutouts in 36 Years (38-0 at Arizona, 27-0 vs. Arizona State)
The State of Arizona could not muster a single point against Cal's suffocating defense this season. In consecutive weeks, the Bears hung shutout victories on Arizona (38-0) Oct. 23 and Arizona State (27-0) Oct. 30 in Pac-10 games that could go a long way in establishing California as a legitimate national title contender. It marked the first time since 1968 that the Golden Bears blanked back-to-back opponents (10-0 vs. Colorado and 46-0 vs. San Jose State), and was the first time Cal posted consecutive conference shutouts since 1948 (42-0 vs. Oregon State and 21-0 at Washington). The 38-0 whitewash of Arizona was the Bears' first shutout since 1999.
Averaging 247.8 YPG & 5.95 YPC, Bear Running Game Headed Towards 2nd Straight Pacific-10 Rushing Title This Year
While Jeff Tedford has gained a gilded reputation as a quarterback guru--he's recruited and developed five QBs into eventual NFL first-round selections--there is much more to the Cal head coach than a passing fancy. A closer examination reveals that Tedford offenses have featured a balanced attack for many years. In fact, Tedford has been the architect behind offenses that have produced 1,000-yard rushers six times in the past six years at Cal and Oregon. He has featured 1,000-yard backs (Joe Igber in 2002 and Adimchinobe Echemandu in 2003) in his two seasons in Berkeley, and the next possible back to reach a grand very well may be senior J.J. Arrington. While the Bears lost Echemandu (7th round pick, Cleveland Browns) from last year's backfield--which averaged 168.3 yards-per-game to become Cal's first team to lead the conference in rushing since Joe Kapp's 1958 club churned out 238.0 ypg en route to the school's last Rose Bowl--the cupboard is far from bare. Besides the shifty Arrington (1,415 yards), the Bears feature at least five other quality tailbacks in their 2004 stable. That fact has been underscored in Cal's first nine 2004 games, as the running game has averaged 5.95 yards per carry and a whopping 247.8 yards per game to lead the Pac-10. With seven rushing touchdowns in the Air Force opener and another four TDs via the ground vs. New Mexico State, the Bears' 23 rushing TDs to date have already surpassed the total rushing TDs scored by Cal in five of the last six seasons (2002: 14; 2000: 12; 1001: eight, 1999: six, 1998: seven). Cal rushed for a Pac-10 best 28 touchdowns last season, while the school record is 34 rushing TDs, set in 1951. Rushing for more than 300 yards in each of their first two games this season, the Bears have now gained 3,358 ground yards over the past 14 games, an average of 240.0 per game over that stretch.
Earliest Bear Ever to Pierce 1,000, Arrington Needs Only 46 Yards Saturday to Become Cal's Single Season Rushing Leader
The 'A-Train' Express continues to break school records and threaten other long-standing marks. Three weeks ago, J.J. Arrington cleared the 1,000-yard mark in his seventh game--the earliest any Cal player has ever reached the coveted rushing milestone. Chuck Muncie vaulted the 1,000-yard barrier in his eighth game in 1975, while no other Cal player has cleared the magic number before their 10th contest. Averaging 157.2 yards per game, Arrington enters the Bears' final two regular-season games with a full head of steam that could obliterate Muncie's single season rushing standard of 1,460 set in 1975. With 1,415 yards on 206 carries through nine games, the talented senior tailback needs only 46 yards this Saturday to set a new school record for most rushing yards in a season. Here's the list of nine players in Cal history who have rushed for 1,000 yards in a season (Russell White accomplished the feat three times in his career).
With 9 Straight 100-Yard Games, Arrington's 157.2 YPG Average Highest in Pac-10 Since Heisman Winner Allen (212.9) in 1981
Could J.J. Arrington be the most productive--and consistent--running back in the nation this year? There is no denying his gargantuan rushing statistics this year for the No. 4 ranked Bears, as he's on pace to rush for 1,729 yards this season, not counting a bowl appearance. What's more, if he were to maintain his 157.2 yards-per-game average, it would be the highest rushing output in the Pac-10 in 23 years. Not since Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Allen cranked out 212.9 yards per game in 1981, has a conference player matched Arrington's yards-per-game production. With his workmanlike 121 yards on 22 carries at Seattle last weekend, J.J. has now rushed for 100 yards or more in nine consecutive games, extending his own school record. Muncie held the previous mark with four straight 100-yard rushing games, which he accomplished on two separate occasions during that 1975 season. Arrington's nine 100-yard efforts also ties the all-time school mark for a season, set by Muncie in that 1975 season, while his 11 career 100-yard games rank third on Cal's list.
Arrington Gaining 6.9 Yards Per Carry as NCAA's No. 4 Rusherwith 1,415 Yards and 13 TDs in 1st 9 Games of 2004
Adimchinobe who? Last year, first team All-Pac-10 tailback Adimchinobe Echemandu finished second in the conference rushing race with 1,195 yards and 13 touchdowns. One would think his departure to the NFL this year would have left a large void in the Bears' ground game. Not so. In fact, J.J. Arrington seems intent on making his senior year even more eventful that Echemandu's was. Thus far, the 5-11, 210-pound back has flattened Cal's first nine opponents for 1,415 yards and 13 touchdowns on only 206 carries, including breathtaking runs of 89 (at Air Force) and 69 (vs. NMSU) yards. He enters the Big Game ranked fourth in the nation in rushing (157.2 ypg), ninth in all-purpose rushing (165.67 ypg) and stands 21st in scoring (8.67 ppg). He bolted for 181 yards and three TDs on 16 carries at Air Force Sept. 4--the second most rushing yards in a season opener in Cal history--and for encore performances, has jetted for 177 yards and three TDs vs. New Mexico State, 108 yards at Oregon State, 112 yards at USC (the first back to rush for 100 vs. the Trojans in 14 games), 205 and two TDs vs. UCLA, 135 at Arizona, 188 vs. both Arizona State and Oregon, and 122 at Washington. His 6.87 yards-per-carry average leads the Pac-10 and ranks first nationally among the Top 40 rushers. J.J. (which, incidentally, stands for Jonathan Jerome) leads the conference's No. 2 rusher, Oregon's Terence Whitehead by 53.8 yards per game.
Needing 585 Yards in Final 3 Games, J.J. Can Join Heisman Winners Allen & White As 3rd 2,000 Rusher in Pac-10 History
Including the still-to-be-determined bowl game, Arrington has three games remaining to register 585 yards and become only the third player in Pac-10 history to rush for 2,000 yards in a season. By increasing his yards-per-game clip to 195.0 over the final three games--and remember, he's already spewed out games of 205, 188 and 188 and 181 this year--he could join Heisman Trophy winners Marcus Allen (2,427 in 1981) and Charles White (2,050 in 1979) of USC as the conference's only two grand men.
Joining Elite 2,000-Yard Club Last Week, J.J. Also Climbing Cal's Career Rushing Ladder; Currently Ranks 8th With 2,012 Yards
Despite an abbreviated Cal career--he transferred from College of the Canyons JC last year--J.J. Arrington has wasted little time in soaring into the Golden Bears' Career Top 10 Rushing List. With almost no fanfare, he became only the eighth player in school history to rush for 2,000 in a career when his 121-yard effort at Washington vaulted him to 2,012 for his two-year Cal career. He will need 179 yards this weekend to climb another rung on the chart, as No. 7 Lindsey Chapman is perched at 2,190 yards.
Arrington Can Become 5th Bear to Win Conference Rushing Title, 1st Since Joe Kapp in 1958
If senior tailback J.J. Arrington continues to blaze to a Pac-10 rushing title this season, it would mark the sixth time a Cal player has been crowned the league-rushing champion. Amazingly, it would be the first time a Cal player has claimed the title in 46 years--not since quarterback Joe Kapp rushed for 616 yards to pace the conference in 1958, which was the last season the Golden Bears went to the Rose Bowl
Arrington Now Owns 6 of Top 26 Rushing Efforts in Cal History, 1st Bear to Run for 3 TDs in Back-to-Back Games Since 1993
Although he's only played in 22 games and made 11 starts in his brief Cal career, J.J. Arrington certainly has made his mark. He's already rushed for 100 yards or more 11 times in his career (third most in Cal history), and owns a record six of the Top 26 all-time single game rushing efforts in Golden Bear history. Arrington, who transferred to Cal from College of the Canyons in Southern California last year, has been the author of rushing outbursts of 205 (tied for 9th, vs. UCLA), 188 twice (16th vs. Arizona State and Oregon), 185 (18th, vs. Washington, 2003) and 181 (24th, at Air Force, 2004) and 177 (26th, vs. New Mexico State, 2004) yards. His 188-yard outburst vs. Oregon two weeks ago marked the fifth time this year he has rushed for at least 175 yards, most in school history for a single season. Arrington's career total of six contests with 175 yards or more tops the previous Cal record of four, set by Russell White (1990-92). And by rushing for three touchdowns in each of his first two 2004 contests, J.J. also became the first Bear to accomplish that feat in back-to-back games since Lindsey Chapman turned the trick during the 1993 season. With 13 touchdowns to date, Arrington is only one away from the school's record for rushing TDs in a season (14), held by both White (1991) and Chapman. Interestingly, in his last 10 starts at tailback, Arrington is averaging 160.0 yards per carry in gaining a robust 1,600 yards and 14 touchdowns on 220 carries. Those starts occurred against Washington (54-7) last year, plus all nine games this season, contests in which Cal has outscored its opponents by a whopping 398-132 count.
All-American McArthur Owns Cal's Career Receiving Mark with 2,996 Yards; Needs 5 Catches to Also Claim Reception Record
Rebounding from an abdominal strain in the early season that has impacted his 2004 numbers, All-American wide receiver Geoff McArthur has looked like his old self in the past six games. He's snared 39 passes for 596 yards and five TDs during that period, averaging 6.5 receptions and 99.3 yards per contest. The Bear senior made school history last month in Arizona, as his six-catch, 94-yard effort propelled him past Bobby Shaw (2,731, 1994-97) to claim Cal's all-time receiving yardage record. The new mark was set when McArthur corralled an 11-yard scoring strike from Aaron Rodgers with 11 seconds left before halftime, which gave Cal a 28-0 lead at intermission. Now with 191 grabs for 2,996 yards, he needs only five catches this weekend to set Cal's career reception record, currently held by Dameane Douglas at 195 from 1995-98. Despite his early physical handicap, he ranks fourth in yardage (74.4) and third in receptions (5.1) per game in the Pac-10 this year and should become the school's first 3,000-yard receiver this Saturday. With 2,996 career yards, he should hit the coveted mark with his first catch of the day. His recent six-game tear comes on the heels of a phenomenal 2003 season for McArthur, who arguably posted the finest all-around receiving statistics in the Pac-10 with 85 grabs for 1,504 yards and 10 TDs last year. His 1,504 yards were a school record, while his 85 catches were the second most in Cal annals. Named a second team All-American last season--and 2004 preseason first team All-American by Sports Illustrated--he ended his remarkable run by breaking the Cal single-season record for most receptions with 16 for 245 yards and two TDs in the Bears' 28-16 victory over Stanford in the 2003 Big Game. Had it not been for a freak injury (fractured arm) in practice Dec. 21, McArthur would have shattered the Pac-10 season receiving yardage record during the Insight Bowl. He fell 16 yards shy of Johnnie Morton's 10-year-old mark of 1,520 yards.
McArthur Ranks 2nd in 100-Yard Games (10), 4th in TD Receptions (19) among Cal Career Leaders
Besides his lofty standing in career receptions and receiving yards among Cal's all-time pass-catchers, Geoff McArthur also ranks highly in other career categories. With his 8-catch, 121-yard display Nov. 6 vs. Oregon, he has now registered ten 100-yard games in his career. That's only one shy of the Cal record of 11, held by Bobby Shaw (1994-97). And his two touchdown catches against the Ducks inflated his career total to 19, which ranks fourth on the school's all-time list. He needs three more TD receptions to vault Steve Sweeney (1970-72) into third place. The all-time record is 27 by Shaw.
Injuries Test One of Deepest Receiving Corps in Cal History
Position coach, Eric Kiesau, calls them a 'special group,' a collection of players he might not see again if he 'coaches for another 30 years.' A close knit unit that hangs together in off hours--they even took a yoga class en masse this summer--this year's Cal wide receiver corps is much more than All-American Geoff McArthur. The unit lost only 17 of 165 receptions (10%) from last year's unit through graduation, and is ranked No. 1 in the Pac-10 and No. 4 nationally by Athlon Sports in its preseason magazine. A blend of veterans and youth, the group includes five seniors, as well as three redshirt-freshmen, creating a veritable logjam at wideout. However, an injury epidemic has decimated this once stable of pass-catching riches. For the past month, Tedford has been forced to test the depth of this uni, as no less than four of his gifted receivers have endured serious injuries. Chase Lyman is lost for the season with ACL knee surgery suffered in the USC game, while Jonathan Makonnen bruised his liver at Arizona and is still doubtful to return during the regular season. Burl Toler, who started 10 games last year, hopes to see some action this week after sitting out the past four games with chronic knee tendinitis. And to create even more hardship, freshman speed-burner Noah Smith underwent an appendectomy last week and may be lost until the bowl game.
Lyman Averaged 103.5 Receiving Yards Per Game & NCAA-Leading 29.6 YPC Before Knee Injury vs. USC Ended Season
Saddled with injuries throughout his career, senior wide receiver Chase Lyman had apparently turned over a new leaf in 2004. Finally healthy, Lyman was inserted into the starting lineup for an injured Geoff McArthur in last year's Insight Bowl and he had played like a man possessed after since. He set a Cal bowl game receiving record with five catches for 149 yards and one TD in the Bears' 52-49 win over Virginia Tech, and he has thrived as a starter along side McArthur this season. With his five-catch, 176-yard day at Oregon State--the 176 yards were the 11th most by a Cal player in school history--the receiver entered the USC tilt with 17 passes for 535 yards and six TDs in his last four games dating back to the bowl game (interestingly, Lyman had managed only 526 yards and three TDs on 63 receptions during his Cal career prior to the Insight Bowl). But a hyperextended knee sidelined the Bear wideout for most of the second half at USC. X-rays after the game confirmed that Lyman will be lost for the season. He underwent successful surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee on Monday, Oct. 11. Until the injury, Lyman ranked first in yards per reception (29.6 yards per grab) and 10th in yards per game (103.5), respectively, among Division I-A receivers.
Every Which Way But...Lose? Cal Dominates the Statistical Battle Only to Fall 9 Yards Short From Upset of No. 1 USC
In a game for the ages, the California Golden Bears came within an eyelash of scoring one of the biggest road victories in the school's 122-year history Oct. 9. But what made the 23-17 loss to nationally No. 1 ranked USC at the Los Angeles Coliseum so disheartening for Cal fans was simply this: the Bears were the runaway winners in the final stat sheet. Cal won virtually every statistical category, outdistancing the Trojans by wide margins in total yards (424 to 205), rushing yards (157 to 41), passing yards (267 to 164), first downs (28 to 12) and time of possession (37:11 to 22:49). Yet, facing a fast-charging Bears' offense at its own nine-yard line with 1:47 left in the game, the USC defense rose to the occasion to snuff out a brilliant Aaron Rodgers-led rally by denying the Bears one final touchdown that would have given Cal one of its greatest wins in school history. The six-point loss halted a six-game winning streak for California, dating back to last year, and marked the only time this year that the Bears' offense failed to reach the 40-point plateau. Continually handed short fields to defend, the Bear defense proved extremely stingy in Los Angeles. They limited the explosive USC offense to 205 totals yards, 12 first downs, 41 rushing yards and a minuscule 1.6 yards-per-carry on the ground. They harnessed Matt Lienart & Co. to 3-for-11 in third-down conversions, and set season highs for sacks (four) and tackles-for-loss yardage (41).
Rodgers' Stock Soars in Last-Second Loss at USC; Cal's Junior QB Sets and Ties NCAA Records for Consecutive Completions
Before a sellout crowd of 92,000 in the L.A. Coliseum, Cal junior quarterback Aaron Rodgers completed his first 23 passes en route to one of the greatest passing exhibitions in Bears' football history. Carving up the Trojans' vaunted defense for 267 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions on 29-of-34 accuracy, Rodgers showed the nation why he's one of the top quarterbacks in NCAA Division I-A football. His 23 consecutive completions tied the single game NCAA record (Tennessee's Tee Martin vs. South Carolina, 1998), while the Cal QB set a NCAA mark for most consecutive completions in a season (Martin, 24 in 1998) with 26, dating back to the Oregon State game Oct. 2. What's more, Rodgers established a new Cal record for completion percentage, as his .853 figure eclipsed the previous best of .852, set by Gale Gilbert (23-of-27) against Oregon State in 1983. Remarkably, Rodgers entered that fateful first-and-goal at the nine yard-line in the game's final two minutes, having completed 29 of 31 attempts with both incompletions resulting in intentional throw-aways by the Bears' quarterback.
In Less Than 2 Seasons, Rodgers Already Ranks Among Golden Bears' Top 10 in Both Career Passing and Total Offense
Despite starting only 19 games and playing in 22 contests in his brief Cal tenure, Rodgers is already perched among Cal's career Top 10 in both career total offense and passing yards. He currently sits in seventh place on the school's career total offense chart with 5,177 yards. Rodgers, who needs 612 yards to leapfrog Gale Gilbert (1980-94, 5,788 yards), has already eclipsed such legends as Chuck Muncie (3,205 yards), Russell White (3,381), Joe Roth (3,447), Steve Bartkowski (3,938) and Craig Morton (4,130) in the process. On the career passing ladder, he's perched at No. 9 with 4,880, needing only 161 yards to surpass Justin Vedder (1997-98, 5,040 yards) to claim the eighth spot. Here's both the Top 10 in career total offense and passing yards:
Ranking No. 7 Nationally in Pass Efficiency, Rodgers Launches 13 TD Passes During California's Current 5-Game Winning Skein
Complementing a dominant ground game thus far in 2004, Aaron Rodgers has served as a highly-efficient field general for Cal. The junior signal-caller has completed 68.5 percent of his passes for 1,977 yards, while throwing 20 touchdowns and six interceptions. Rodgers, who owns the nation's seventh-best passing efficiency rating (163.4), has thrown 13 TD passes in his last five games. Dating back to last year, he owns a 15-4 career record--a .789 winning percentage--as the Bears' starting quarterback and has connected on 68.4 percent (264-of-386) of his attempts in averaging 238.0 passing yards with 32 TDs and only eight interceptions in his last 14 games. His numbers are even better over the last 12 games: 68.8 percent (232-of-337), 256.5 ypg, 28 TDs, 7 INTs. While his 161 passing yards at Washington were his second lowest aerial output of the season, Rodgers characteristically found other ways to help his team win last Saturday. He rushed for 42 yards on nine carries, including a career-long 36-yarder in the third quarter. In fact, if you subtract four Husky sacks, Rodgers actually rushed for 64 yards.
Rodgers' 68.8 Completion Percentage (159-of-232) Threatens Pacific-10 Single-Season Mark of 70.7 by Cal's Rich Campbell
By connecting on 68.8 percent of his passes (159-for-232) thus far in 2004, Rodgers is on pace to challenge the Pacific-10 Conference single-season records for completion percentage. The Pac-10 standard is held by a fellow Golden Bear, Rich Campbell, who completed 70.7 percent of his attempts (193-of-273) in 1980.
Cal QB Also Eyes Pac-10 Career INT Percentage Mark
Aaron Rodgers, benefiting under the tutelage of Jeff Tedford and his QB legacy of developing five previous NFL first-round draft picks, entered this year having been named the preseason 2004 Pac-10 Player of the Year by Athlon Sports. Much of his national respect came from his reputation for mistake-free football. Dating back to his only season at Butte College (28 TDs, 4 INTs in 2002), Rodgers has thrown 67 touchdown passes and only 15 interceptions combined over the past three years (including 2004). Despite throwing six picks this year--with his interceptions inexplicably coming in pairs on the road (two at Oregon State, Arizona and Washington)--his current career interception percentage is a microscopic 1.89 (11 INT, 581 attempts). That's a figure that is well below the Pac-10 career mark of 2.59 (13 INT, 501 att.) set by USC's Paul McDonald in 1976-79 and the Cal record of 2.74 (26 INTs, 950 att.) by Pat Barnes in 1993-96. The NCAA career record for interception percentage, minimum 1,050 attempts, is 2.12 by Jeff Kingsbury of Texas Tech, who threw 40 picks in 1,883 attempts from 1999-2002. In the category 600-1,049 attempts in a career, the record holder is Billy Volek of Fresno State, who was intercepted 12 times in 934 attempts (1.28%) from 1997-99. And who was Volek's offensive coordinator in 1997? A guy named Tedford.
Tedford Has Perpetuated Cal's Quarterback Tradition
Since the days of All-American John Meek, who led Cal to an unbeaten season and Rose Bowl title in 1937, the Bears have been a cradle for college quarterbacks. Twelve years later in 1949, Bob Celeri also earned All-American honors after guiding the Bears to a 10-1 mark and Rose Bowl appearance. In the past four decades, Cal has produced an extraordinary list of polished passers. They include such legends as Joe Kapp (1956-58), Craig Morton (1962-64), Steve Bartkowski (1972-74), Pat Barnes (1993-96), Joe Roth (1975-76), Rich Campbell (1977-80), Gale Gilbert (1980-84), Troy Taylor (1986-89), Mike Pawlawski (1988-91) and Pat Barnes (1993-96). Perhaps, the best is yet to come in Berkeley, thanks to the arrival of head coach Jeff Tedford in 2002. Tedford has recruited and/or developed five quarterbacks who have become first-round draft choices in the NFL. As offensive coordinator at Fresno State, he worked his magic with Trent Dilfer (No. 6 pick by Tampa Bay, 1994) and David Carr (No. 1 by Houston, 2002). As offensive coordinator at Oregon, he transformed Akili Smith (No. 3 by Cincinnati, 1999) and Joey Harrington (No. 3 by Detroit, 2002) into college superstars. And in 2002 at Cal, he inherited senior Kyle Boller, who after three previous seasons of frustration, blossomed into perhaps the nation's most improved quarterback. Boller, who later would become a first-round draft choice of the NFL's Baltimore Ravens, finished his Cal career ranked first in TD passes (64) and second all-time in passing yards (7,980) in school history. Now, the latest big-time QB to fall off the Tedford assembly line is Aaron Rodgers, now one of the nation's top collegiate passers and field generals.
Bears' High-Octane Offense Features Some of Nation's Best
Seven starters, including perhaps the nation's premier pass-catch tandem in quarterback Aaron Rodgers and wide receiver Geoff McArthur, return on a Cal high-octane offense that set school single-season records for total offense (6,061 yards), passing yards (3,705), first downs (327) and pass completions (278) last year. Five of Cal's returning starters on offense entered 2004 on at least one national 'watch list.' They are:
Player Pos. Yr. Watch List Award CategoryJ.J. Arrington TB Sr. Doak Walker Award Nation's Best Running BackGarrett Cross TE Sr. John Mackey Award Nation's Best Tight EndGeoff McArthur WR Sr. Walter Camp Player of the Year Nation's Best Player Maxwell Award Nation's Best PlayerMarvin Philip C Jr. Rimington Award Nation's Best CenterAaron Rodgers QB Jr. Walter Camp Player of the Year Nation's Best Player Maxwell Award Nation's Best Player Davey O'Brien Award Nation's Best Quarterback
Rimington Award Candidate Philip Anchors Bears' O-Line
One of the anchors of Cal's offensive line is junior Marvin Philip, who appears on the Rimington Award watch list as one of college football's premier centers. Philip, who returned from a two-year Mormon mission last year to reclaim his starting job by midseason, led all Cal linemen in pancake blocks and knockdowns for the 8-6 Bears. Starting the final five games of the 2003 season--a period in which the team etched a 4-1 record and averaged 206 yards rushing per contest--the 6-2, 280-pound veteran bridges the gap between pre-Tedford era and this fall's promising club. After ending his freshman season as the starting center on Cal's 2000 football team that finished 3-8, Philip departed Berkeley for a mission in North Dakota. Two years later, he returned to find a new head coach, a new team attitude that produced a winning season in 2002, and an offensive line that blossomed into one of the Pac-10's best. Arriving back on campus about 25 pounds under his normal playing weight, Philip underwent a demanding strength and conditioning program during the spring of 2002 and returned to his original 280 pounds. His maturity and experience has played a vital role in an offensive line that lost both its starting tackles in All-Pac-10 first teamer Mark Wilson (Washington Redskins, 5th round) and All-Pac-10 honorable mention choice Chris Murphy. Other key returning blockers include fellow starter Ryan O'Callaghan, who has been switched from right guard to right tackle this year, and veteran guards Jonathan Giesel and Aaron Merz.
The Riddler: Pac-10 Sack Leader Ryan Riddle Needs 3 Sacks in Cal's Final 3 Games to Tie Andre Carter's Season Record (13.5)
A sleeper choice to earn All-America consideration this year, Cal senior defensive end is finishing his final season with a flourish. Corralling Washington's Casey Paus for two sacks last week, Riddle has forged into the Pac-10 lead with 10.5 sacks on the season. The 6-3, 250-pound linemen needs only three more sacks this season to tie Cal's single season record of 13.5, set by Andre Carter (1st round pick, San Francisco 49ers) in 2000. On the season, 'The Riddler' has amassed 37 tackles, including an impressive 15 tackles for losses of 99 yards, and has both forced and recovered fumbles. Riddle, who transferred from El Camino JC in Southern California last year, has bagged 17.0 sacks for the Bears during the past two seasons. That figure ranks him 11th on the school's career list.
California Eyes 1st Rose Bowl Berth in 45 Years
It has been 45 long years since the California Golden Bears have made an appearance in the coveted Rose Bowl, but Old Blues are hoping that this may be the season Cal returns to Pasadena. With memories of Joe Kapp's 1959 Rose Bowl team beginning to fade, the Bears surprised college football last year by coming oh-so-close to a return visit. Had it not been for a 23-20 overtime loss at UCLA and an ulcerating 21-17 setback at Oregon--the Bears blew a 17-7 fourth-quarter lead--Cal's 5-3 conference record would have improved to 7-1, sealing the Bears' first trip to the Rose Bowl in more than four decades. While those bitter defeats still serve as a reminder of how close they came to Pasadena, Tedford's club has made the most of its opportunities this fall. Returning 16 starters from last year's 8-6 team that earned the school's first bowl appearance in seven years, California's experience and maturation has enabled the Bears to become Cal's first team to make bowl appearances in back-to-back years since the 1990 (Copper) and 1991 (Citrus) teams. And if the season ended today, Cal would likely be Pasadena-bound.
McArthur Produces One of Greatest Individual Efforts in Big Game History With Record-Setting 16 Receptions for 245 Yards
Geoff McArthur was nothing short of brilliant in last year's Big Game, as the 6-1, 200-pound All-American hauled in a school-record 16 passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns in paving the way for a 28-point second-half explosion that erased a 10-0 Stanford lead at intermission. His 16 receptions rank second on the all-time Pac-10 single game list (three shy of the conference mark of 19, set by Arizona State's Ron Fair in 1989), while his 245 yards rank second in Cal history. His catches and yards were also both Big Game marks.
Rodgers Also Sizzles Against Stanford in Breaking Plunkett's Big Game Mark for Total Offense Last Year
Aaron Rodgers, who carved up the Cardinal defense for a then-career-high 359 yards passing and another 55 yards rushing, broke Jim Plunkett's 34-year-old Big Game record for total offense (409) by tallying 414 combined yards last year. He completed 26-of-37 passes on the afternoon, including a sizzling 12-for-14 for 189 yards and three touchdowns in the decisive second half.
A Series of Nail-Biters: Nearly Half of Big Games Decided by 7 Points or Less
Fifty of the 106 previous Big Games--almost half of the contests--have been decided by seven points or less, including four of the last seven meetings, six of the last 11, and 10 of the last 20 contests. What's more, 25 of the games--nearly 25 percent--have been decided by a field goal or less. Stanford's 36-30 overtime win in 2000 marked the fifth time the Big Game has been decided on the game's final play.
While Cal Owns the Axe, Stanford has Won 29 of Last 42 Big Games
While California owns the Axe and is looking to three-peat this year, the Cardinal has had the upper hand for the past four decades. Prior to 1961, the Golden Bears held a 28-25 edge over Stanford in the Big Game rivalry. In fact, the Bears posted a 10-2-2 mark against Stanford from 1947-60, including a 7-1-2 showing under the legendary Pappy Waldorf during the years of 1947-56. However, since 1961, the Cardinal has ck to 1987.
Trading Places: California, Stanford Players/Coaches Have Seen Other Side of Rivalry
Five Bears left their Bay Area south peninsula roots to attend the University of California. Linebacker Joe Maningo, who grew up in San Jose and lists Los Altos Hills as his hometown, attended San Jose's Overfelt High School and was a second team JC All-American at Foothill College before transferring to Cal last year. Injured wide receiver Chase Lyman hails from Los Altos Hills and earned West Catholic Athletic League Player of the Year honors at St. Francis High, while fellow senior wideout Jonathan Makonnen schooled at Woodside High. Other Cal players with peninsula ties are linebacker Greg Van Hoesen, who starred at Saratoga High in Saratoga, and defensive tackle John Allen, former Los Gatos High standout in Los Gatos. On the Stanford side, there is only one East Bay product on the roster--freshman defensive back Wopamo Osaisai, who graduated from Pinole High School in Pinole. The Cardinal also feature one coach with a Cal connection: wide receivers coach Ken Margerum, former Stanford two-time first team All-American and Pac-10 career leader with 32 touchdown catches, served on Tom Holmoe's staff as the Bears' receivers coach from 2000-01.
29 Cal Seniors To Make Final Memorial Stadium Appearance This Week
Always a poignant moment, 29 Cal seniors will make their final home game appearance at Memorial Stadium in this week's Big Game. Among the more noteworthy Golden Bears making their swan-song performance are All-American wide receiver Geoff McArthur, Pac-10 rushing leader J.J. Arrington and four-year starting defensive tackle Lorenzo Alexander. Here's the complete list of departing Cal seniors:
Lorenzo Alexander, DTJ.J. Arrington, TBFrancis Blay-Miezah, LBJ.D. Cafaro, DEJoe Crenshaw, WRGarrett Cross, TEMatt Currin, LBLucas Everett, P-KJonathan Giesel, GMatt Giordano, SRyan Gutierrez, SWendell Hunter, LBDerek Joyce, GL.P. Ladouceur, LSChase Lyman, WRJonathan Makonnen, WRJoe Maningo, LBGeoff McArthur, WRTag McCurdy, LBMike McGrath, ROVRandall Perkins, DERyan Riddle, DEReggie Robertson, QBSid Slater, LBTom Sverchek, DT-DERay Tago, DEBurl Toler, WRBrian Tremblay, LBPerron Wiley, LB
By beating Stanford Stanford Saturday, Cal can record its first undefeated home season (5-0) since the 1950 team etched a 7-0 mark in Memorial Stadium....Also by winning Saturday, the Bears can extend their home winning streak to seven games dating back to last year--the school's longest home win string since Pappy Waldorf's teams of 1947-50 reeled off 21 straight home victories....Cal ranks No. 1 in seven of the listed 30 team statistical categories in this week's Pac-10 release: total offense, scoring offense, rushing offense, pass efficiency, fewest opponents first downs, third down conversions, and red zone defense....The Bears are outscoring their opponents by a 167-34 margin in the second half this year, as Cal's defense has allowed only two touchdowns in the third quarter, where the Bears have 170-13 edge on the season....Cal has scored 28 points or more in 25 of 35 games of the Tedford Era; prior to Tedford taking over the program in 2002, the Bears had reached the 28-point plateau only 10 times in their previous 48 contests...Arrington's 6.9 ypc average this season is within range of the Cal single season mark of 7.3, set by Bear legend Jackie Jensen in 1948...Third-string tailback Terrell Williams, a former high school quarterback, has completed four of five passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns on halfback pass plays during his Cal career...The Golden Bears are the Pac-10's most veteran team, leading the circuit in both senior starters (12) as well as seniors on the two-deep (19)...Last weekend, the Bears outrushed the Huskies by a 255-35 yardage margin in the final half...A first half note of futility against Washington: Cal was shut out in the first quarter (3-0) for only the second time this season (the Bears trailed 10-0 at USC Oct. 9)...While he'll be hard pressed to match his passing yardage of a year ago--his 1,977 yards are 926 yards shy of last season's 2,903 total--Aaron Rodgers has been much more efficient in throwing touchdown passes in 2004. He's tossed 20 in only 232 attempts this fall, compared to 19 in 349 attempts last year....The Bears are now 4-1 away from Memorial Stadium this year, the most road wins by a Cal team since Keith Gilbertson's 1993 club went 4-2....Cal has rushed for 810 yards on 121 carries in its last three games--all victories--against Washington, including 685 on 79 attempts the past two meetings...Two consensus members of the All-Old Blues Team are Col. Charles Travers and Warren Spieker, who will be attending their 82nd and 75th Big Games, respectively, this Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Both served as Cal's honorary captains at the 2002 Big Game in Berkeley.
RELATED NEWS & VIDEOS
Tue 4/24 | 6:00pm PTLive