Cardinal Falls to Cal
STANFORD, Calif. (AP) -- Stanford fell to California, 41-11, in the 124th Big Game between the two schools Saturday evening.
Chase Garbers was one of more than 20 players from Cal (4-6, 3-4 Pac-12) to miss the game at Arizona two weeks ago following a positive COVID-19 test. The Golden Bears had more than 40 positive tests in all for the program, leading to last week's game against Southern California to be postponed.
But nearly all of those players were back on Saturday for the Big Game and Cal took control over Stanford (3-8, 2-7) with 636 yards of offense, including 352 on the ground.
Garbers delivered the biggest play with an 84-yard TD pass to Trevon Young to open the scoring in the second quarter. That broke the record for longest pass in the Stanford/Cal series, eclipsing the 82-yarder Brian Johnson threw to Walter Batson for Stanford in 1987.
Garbers added a 1-yard TD pass to Christopher Brooks later in the half to deliver Cal just its second win in the past 11 Big Games. Garbers ran and threw for a score two years ago in a 24-20 win at Stanford Stadium that was the Bears' only other win in the past 11 games against Stanford (3-8, 2-7).
The Cardinal has dropped six straight games overall for their longest skid since losing their first nine games in 2006 under coach Walt Harris.
Even the return of Tanner McKee made little difference for Stanford. He missed the past two games when the Cardinal were outscored by 66 points in losses to Utah and Oregon State and struggled to get much going on offense.
Stanford was gashed again by big plays, allowing a 75-yard run to Brooks and a 76-yard TD run to Marcel Dancy in the third quarter. The Cardinal have allowed five TDs from scrimmage of more than 50 yards in the past three games.
Stanford hosts Notre Dame on Saturday to close out the 2021 season.