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Thursday

Well, if you were hoping to find out who is starting at quarterback tonight, as expected, you’ll have to wait. Coach Jeff Tedford once again said it will be a gametime decision. Here’s what happened tonight: Nate Longshore spent most of practice taking the first team snaps, then sat out the final half-hour of practice or so and Kevin Riley played with the first team. Afterward, said he would monitor Longshore’s condition closely between now and the game.

Longshore didn’t take any reps Wednesday. Tedford said it was because Longshore needed a day of rest. Based on what I saw Thursday, it seemed fairly clear that Longshore is the starter. But based on Tedford’s comments, I’m not so sure. He could have just come out and said Longshore had done enough in practice to demonstrate he was ready to go, and that’s why he sat out the final stretch of practice. But saying simply that he is going to continue to monitor Longshore’s condition until Saturday makes me think there might be a better chance of Riley playing than you might expect. If nothing else, it will make for a little suspense Saturday evening.

For the record, Longshore seemed to be moving pretty well. The fact that he was able to practice fully on Tuesday after aggravating his ankle sprain Saturday made me think that he was in pretty good condition.

Other updates: wide receiver Robert Jordan practiced for the first time this week and Tedford said he will play as long as he doesn’t suffer any ill effects on his shoulder. Fullback Will Ta’ufo’ou, who missed Saturday’s game because of a recurring knee injury, practiced without limitation Thursday. Tedford said Ta’ufo’ou was “available” to play.

Tedford said he thought the spirit and morale of the team was pretty good heading into the game. He said the team was a little down Sunday, which is understandable, but said the attitude has picked up as the week has progressed.

Some big news out of Pullman, and it’s bad news for Washington State. Tailback Dwight Hardy, who piled up 214 yards rushing in the Cougars’ win over UCLA last week, is out for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament. Hardy apparently suffered the injury during his 51-yard touchdown run during the game’s final minute.

Kevin McCall is expected to start in Hardy’s place. Cal defensive coordinator Bob Gregory said it’s too late in the week to really make any drastic changes in the game plan with Hardy out, but he called McCall “a good football player.”

Jonathan Okanes

Jonathan Okanes is in his fourth year covering Cal's football team. Previously, he covered Cal's men's basketball team for four years. He can also be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/OkanesonCal.

  • Big D

    Tardy out? Riley will start. Longshore will rest. Defense needs to shut down the passing game and then we are going bowling! Bell, Emerald, Vegas, Sun?

  • R

    I have a pretty good gut feeling that Longshore will start. It seems like his ankle is always in good shape at the beginning of the game but not perfect shape. It’ll probably start giving out more once he gets hit a couple times.

    With that said, I wouldn’t mind Longshore starting as long as Tedford took him IF it looks like its hurting. This repeated aggravation of the ankle doesn’t make much sense to me. If it keeps getting reinjured, he should really take it easy and let it heal completely.

    We’ll definitely need some mobility versus USC after Washington State. USC has always had problems with mobile QBs.

  • R

    Oh, and having Robert Jordan and Will back is awesome!

    Any news on Rulon Davis? I know he’ll probably be out for at least a couple weeks. I hope we’ll see him at least one more time before bowl season.

  • Robert

    J.O. what are the guidelines usually when the NCAA decides whether or not to grant a sixth year to someone?

  • k

    Anybody knows why JT won’t let Desean return kick-offs? Balls directed away from him and out-of-bounds would draw a penalty and give Cal good field position.

  • Big D

    Prediction: CAL 48- WSU 24. CAL goes BOWLING again!

  • Jonathan Okanes

    R, nothing new to report on Rulon. He’ll at least miss this game and probably the USC game. It’s up in the air after that.

    Robert, in most cases, the NCAA only grants the sixth year if the player can prove his first redshirt year was at least partially for medical reasons as well. That’s why Schneider may have a tough time getting the year. But the NCAA also has been known to make exceptions, so who knows?

  • CardinalSinz

    Is it Hardy or Tardy?!