Photo by Al Sermeno/klcfotos
Cal Football

Cal Offense Dormant in 38-7 Loss to Washington

October 7, 2017

Warning signs that emerged last week in Cal's loss to Oregon sounded alarm bells tonight, with Cal's near complete inability to move the ball offensively against a tough Husky defense in the Bears' defeat in Seattle Saturday night.

With just two minutes and change to play in the 1st half and Cal down, 24-0, the Bears had managed just one meager first down. For the game, the Bears had a paltry 93 yards of net total offense after 50 yards in sack yardage was factored in on 7 sacks surrendered by the Cal offensive line -several times facing 3-man rushes, where they were still overwhelmed. It was the first time the Bears have had less than 150 total yards since getting 130 against Stanford in 1999. Overall, the offense managed just 1.8 yards per play and ran just 52 plays on offense.

When Bowers finally took a seat in favor of junior QB Chase Forrest mid-4th quarter, the soph starter had managed just 11 completions for 80 yards in 18 attempts and 4.4 yards per pass, with no touchdowns and no interceptions. With starting receivers Demetris Robertson and Kanawai Noa out and receivers usually well-covered downfield, most of the completions were outlet passes to the running backs, with five of the 11 completions to running back Patrick Laird. Cal's lone opportunity for a big play downfield resulted in Bowers' perfect 50-yard pass down the sideline going through freshman receiver Jeremiah Hawkins' hands to miss the sure touchdown.

The running game gained just 37 yards on on 14 carries (2.64 yards per carry), with Vic Enwere and Patrick Laird leading the Bears with just 12 yards a piece.

Despite the lopsided score, the Cal defense played reasonably well, often hamstrung by an offense that continually produced 3-and-outs. Cal's only points came on a fumble recovery and impressive 40-yard touchdown return by senior cornerback Darius Allensworth, who fought off several tackles for the score.

The Bears' D held the Huskies to just 377 yards -well below their season average. UW QB Jake Browing completed 27-of-40 passes for two touchdowns and no interceptions, though the Bears missed two major interception opportunities in the 1st half -one resulting in a Husky touchdown when a ball was wrenched out of safety Deron Brown's hands in the end zone.

The Huskies rushed for 162 yards in 38 carries -a fairly pedestrian 4.3 yards per carry by Washington standards. The Huskies were led by running back Myles Gaskin with 91 yards in 24 carries (3.8 ypc), with two td's.

Special teams led the top-ranked punt and kick returner Dante Pettis to 53 total yards in returns on the night.

It doesn't get any easier for the Bears in their stretch of four straight games against ranked opponents, with undefeated  No. 11 Washington State coming to town in just six days.

Stay tuned for more with postgame videos and quotes coming up tonight.

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Cal Offense Dormant in 38-7 Loss to Washington

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