If the Bears have any hangover from Saturday’s loss, it doesn’t show at practice. Cal had a spirited practice Wednesday and looks to have rid the effects of the heartbreaking setback against Oregon State.
Of course, the biggest question this week is the quarterback situation. Nate Longshore took limited reps Wednesday, some with the first team but more with the second team. He still doesn’t look totally right physically. One one play, he seemed to plant funny as he handed off to Justin Forsett and limped around for a few seconds. There’s no question the ankle injury is still affecting him to a degree. The question is whether he can play through it or not and be effective.
Kevin Riley looked sharp in practice. I have to imagine getting that first game out of the way, and playing well for the most part, has done wonders for his confidence. Not that he wasn’t confident before, but proving he can produce on a big stage like that can only help.
I kind of wondered if anything was going through Riley’s head as the Bears practiced the two-minute drill Wednesday. With crowd noise being piped into Memorial Stadium, Riley practiced leading the team down the field in a two-minute situation. And guess what? The Bears were going the same direction on the field as the final drive Saturday night. It was almost a little eerie. But as he did Saturday, Riley looked good doing it (discounting the final play, of course).
Wide receiver Robert Jordan and tight end Cameron Morrah haven’t practiced this week as each has a shoulder sprain, but coach Jeff Tedford said both players would give it a go on Thursday. If they are unavailable Saturday at UCLA, LaReylle Cunningham should start at receiver and Julian Arthur would become the backup tight end.
Rover Marcus Ezeff practiced in a limited fashion Wednesday and he’s still day to day. My hunch would be that Bernard Hicks would start again but Ezeff might be available.