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Cal Review: They Beat the Stupid and Beat the Bears

As I said in the game preview, all the outside stuff was going to be against Auburn in their first trip to Berkeley, California. It was the first road trip for a new staff and very new team. It was a long way from home. It was the latest start for an Auburn football game ever. Not that it mattered to this season, but Auburn was also 0-3 in the State of California.

There was going to be a little stupid to get through, but talent should win out most times. Four turnovers later, that was never more true. Let’s start with that, it’s hard not to since the 3rd play of the game was some stupid that you probably haven’t seen before.

Payton Thorne scrambled to his right, and while he was either going to throw it away, or possibly toss it to a receiver ahead, or maybe the defender’s just hit his arm at the right place and time, the ball came out and hit a Cal guy in the chest before he even realized it was there. But during all of that, one referee blew the play dead, and even the head official ran in the way of the Cal guy with the ball to stop the play further.

But after review, it was pretty much determined that the whistle shouldn’t have been blown, but it was, and the play couldn’t continue because when a whistle blows the defense is told to stop. Meaning had the whistle not been blown, the Cal guy would’ve likely been tackled before running the ball all the way back. That’s a very simple concept that some people don’t seem to or want to understand.

Anyway, the ball was put somewhere around where the ball was fumbled, and Cal got a quick and easy three points out of it. This was something they couldn’t do the rest of the game as Auburn stopped multiple drives inside the Auburn 40 yard line.

This was the same defense that was chastised for one drive against UMass. The same defense was lockdown the rest of the game, and the same defense that was put in many, many tough situations on the road in a place and time where stupid is bound to happen and held Cal without points on every drive that didn’t start from inside the Auburn 35 yard line.

Let’s also look at some more of the dumb that happened to the Auburn offense. No, it wasn’t a great night. But remember, last week the offense was great. It was very promising. Hugh Freeze was already leaving his mark on the Plains. Remember all that?

Now we go to a place and time where stupid is bound to happen, and Auburn coughs the ball up three more times after Throne’s first sorta turnover. The first was a badly thrown ball that floated above everybody, including Shane Hooks’s (yes, that’s how apostrophes on names that end in an ‘s’ works) hands and fell right into a Cal guy that was honestly out of position.

But the two real issues that killed a promising drive and gave Cal one last chance to get the win, were the two review fumbles. Both happened when Auburn looked like they were about to take charge and take the game and say “plastic straws are fine in moderation, Cal.”

Yes, the reviews ended up being right, but they were so minuscule that nobody thought they were fumbles. Nobody fought for them. Had Hugh Freeze, who was standing right there for the Jarquez fumble in the final minutes, noticed the fumble he could’ve easily gotten the next play off and not given them the chance to even look.

Take those two random, weird, minuscule fumbles away and the game is probably a little more comfortable. Am I arguing that actual fumbles should not be called fumbles? Not at all. I’m just saying this should not be a long term concern. It was road game stupid that allowed the Auburn defense to ask everybody to hold these one more time.

Of course, Auburn was supposed to struggle on the road in their first trip a long way from home. It was the story. Most thought Auburn would win, but it wouldn’t be pretty. Auburn won and the offensive side of the ball it wasn’t pretty. But now the story and the ZERO AP VOTES AS A 2-0 SEC TEAM THAT JUST BEAT A POWER 5 TEAM ON THE ROAD 800 YEARS FROM HOME is that Auburn is a really bad team and Cal just handed it to them.

I’d say Auburn took it away from them many, many times. But let’s not say anything positive because your Bama friends might call you stupid.

Auburn is 2-0. Auburn should be 3-0 after this week. Auburn has shown a good offense. Auburn has shown a good defense. Now let’s show them both together.

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Kevin 09/12/2023 at 1:23 pm

Refs gave Auburn the game

Stupid 09/12/2023 at 5:08 pm

Kevin = Karen. Refs, really? bammer!


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