BearTalk

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Halftime update

By Jonathan Okanes
Saturday, August 30th, 2008 at 6:54 pm in Gameday.

Obviously, that wasn’t the greatest moment for Nate Longshore. What started out as a pretty good relief effort turned into disaster. You have to wonder how much Longshore will see the field again in the near future. It will likely take an injury to really ineffective play by Kevin Riley to make it happen. And I wouldn’t bet on Riley going in the tank.

A nice gesture by Riley as well: As Longshore returned to the field after throwing an interception that was returned for a touchdown, he was showered with boos. Riley started to warm up on the sidelines, and motioned to the student section to knock off the booing. Pretty good teammate.

The Bears have to be happy with their first half in the 3-4 defense. MIchigan State hasn’t moved the ball very consistently, and they’re doing a pretty good job against the run. Stopping the run was the biggest concern coming into the game in the 3-4, especially against the Spartans’ potent ground game, led by Javon Ringer.

Cornerback Syd’Quan Thompson has had a terrific game, capped off with his interception at the end of the first half. MSU receivers simply cann’t get open against him,a nd he’s been around the ball consistently.

After a slow start, Jahvid Best is showing up in the boxscore. He has 63 yards on 12 carries and 58 yards on four catches.

Kevin Riley is 7-for-9 for 91 yards. Tight end Cameron Morrah has three catches for 63 yards.

Ringer has just 39 yards on 14 carries. Quarterback Bryan Moyer has struggled, going 9-for-22 for 107 yards and a pick.

More to come….

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  • Lady Bear

    After getting over my momentary anger at Tedford/Cignetti for putting Nate back in after he threw his first interception, I really felt sorry for Nate after that second interception, especially given the crowd’s reaction. I really wish people wouldn’t boo – it’s just mean and it doesn’t do anything for the team. Ironically, Nate now sees how fickle the fans can be — in the past, it was Ayoob who was being booed and Longshore who the fans were clamoring for.

  • Lady Bear

    Did you hear the commentators say that Tedford told them at halftime he was only planning to play Nate for 2 series in the 2nd quarter and he would have switched back to Riley regardless of Nate’s 2 interceptions? Yeah right! Guess this is a little white lie by Tedford to spare Nate’s feelings. Tedford certainly does have class….

  • Kent

    Hopefully this is the last we see of Longshore, while the game is still in doubt.

  • Itjustdoesntmatter

    Tedford is arrogant and stubborn. His playing of Nate when the Bears were still not in control cost Cal 14 pts. and the ability to put the game out of reach. This seems all too familiar. Cal has yet to figure out a way to safely close out games and establish dominance.

    It wasn’t Nate’s fault he was asked to go in for a second series.

    I just don’t understand the Nate/Jeff love affair.

  • todd

    Looks like the 2 quarterback system is offically dead – btw you must take Longshore off of your banner

  • Steve in C oncord

    A closer game than I expected, but with our young team I think that was a good thing. They had to be mentally tough the whole game. No chance to let down. In the long run this was much better than an easy victory over a cup-cake opponent that might give us over-confidence.

    We certainly resolved any remaining QB controversy. Riley was 17-24. Three passes were dropped and one was a throw-away. I think he made one bad pass-an overthrow.

    Jahvid Best confirmed he is the real deal. He came close to breaking a couple really long runs. Vereen had the breakaway TD run and showed he was a threat catching the ball as well.

    So happy for Sean Young making some big catches. Cameron Morrah should be a real factor in future games. Anger can certainly hang-out punts. Hagan can defend and SydQuan was amazing. Great blocking by Will T. and a TD catch as well. Boateng needs to step up and live up to his potential. Can’t wait to watch Calvin when he heals up.

    The new 3-4 defense played well. We gave away points and let drives continue with big mistakes. Anger’s boo-boo led to a MSU TD. So did the roughing the kicker penalty. I won’t name the other culprit.

    I was actually sad to see Nate struggle. It’s a long season and he may be needed at some point. He made some awful decisions though and Riley was near perfect including that amazing throw while he was being tackled. He is certainly a leader and you can tell the team has confidence in him.

    With some top-25 teams losing we could make the top-25 list or at least be right on the cusp of it.

    Now lets go kick some Couger but in Eastern Washington.

  • Jan K Oski

    I agree Kent. I told the fans near me to shut up, when they started booing. However, Longshore still doesn’t get it. He hasn’t learned to look away from his receivers. I don’t even have to watch the torrent file to know that he was telegraphing his throws. He has had his chance to clean that up, and he blew it and almost lost the game for the team. I do feel for the kid, but he needs to embrace his previous words and put them into action by finding another career path.

  • CalFBFan

    Egh. I’m not sure Longshore’s second int was due to telegraphing, but I’m pretty sure it was poor decision making.

    You have to admit, Longshore started hot, but when there weren’t any receivers open, he started trying to force the issue. This was pretty much the case with the second int; he was throwing into triple coverage and the receiver didn’t have any shot at the ball. I imagine 2 years back, Longshore would’ve just thrown it away, but I think the pressure to achieve is playing havoc with his decision making.

    Regardless, gosh, I feel terrible for the Nate. I know some of you don’t want to see him on the field again, but I certainly do, though, only if he’s tearing it up.

  • feveredbear

    itjustdoesn’tmatter>>I just don’t understand the Nate/Jeff love affair.<< If this is a love affair, Tedford is cheating on Ayoob. The fact is that Tedford has proven to be an incompetent judge of QB talent over the last 3 (going on 4) years. This isn’t something new and it isn’t something that Tedford can do anything about. It helps to accept this because Tedford isn’t going anywhere anytime soon and it makes one exquisitely grateful when Tedford *does* make the right decision. So, instead of being upset when Longshore comes in and throws to the opponent, one is instead relieved when Riley takes the field…it’s a Zen thing, and it works.

  • feveredbear

    LadyBear>>in the past, it was Ayoob who was being booed and Longshore who the fans were clamoring for.<< No, the fans were “clamoring” for Steve Levy, not Longshore. You imply that the fans are fickle and that is neither fair nor accurate. The fans are *frustrated* at a coach who (evidently) can’t see what everyone else sees.

    If this were an individual sport and Tedford’s choice didn’t affect any other competitor, then it would be an entirely different matter. But this is a team sport and both Ayoob & Longshore 2.0/3.0 affect others. The reason that DJax fell to the mid-second round in the draft was because Tedford played Longshore. Period. Jackson is a mega-talented player who chose Cal because of the potential opportunity and the school (or rather Tedford) clearly let him down.

    If Cal doesn’t have talent on the team, then who cares? Tedford can play anyone that he cares to and we alums can enjoy the game on another level. However, Tedford (and his assistants but it *is* ultimately Tedford) has brought in an awesome array of talent; more than Cal has had in decades. That carries a responsiblity that Tedford (so far) hasn’t lived up to. THAT’s why alums/fans are frustrated and express this frustration verbally. Sure it’s not nice to the student athlete, but it’s not directed at him. It’s directed at the oblivious dude picking up his $3 million check. (And, by the way, personally *I* wouldn’t boo anyone, but I *do* understand it).

  • GrannyMissPopoff

    I go to law school, and I am right. On both of the picks, the receivers ran the wrong patterns, The defenders also were in the wrong coverage …

  • CalFBFan

    What’s so hard to understand? Tedford thinks Nate is a class act and stand up guy; he obviously wants to give Nate a chance to redeem himself. Ayoob was obviously a poor quarterback all around, but Longshore 06 was great and Nate opened his 1st drive last night in a great fashion. Only the heartless wouldn’t understand why Tedford keeps giving Nate chances.

    Lastly, the winning at all costs attitude is making me sick. Tedford did the right thing by giving Longshore a shot, and maybe Longshore shouldn’t have been put in after his first int, but Longshore did get pulled. Most of you forget that Tedford isn’t just getting paid to win, he’s also getting paid to ensure that Cal players are individuals who represent the university well. Giving Longshore a shot shows to the players that it’s not ok to throw someone overboard once they lose their usefullness. Furthermore, it shows that Tedford will remain loyal to them if they fall under hard times, a la Longshore.

  • Macdaddytms

    How come none of you are writing about what really matters!!! THOSE UNIS SUCK!!!

    Go vote for Vereen on ESPN’s Game Changing Performance

  • Big D

    I’m so happy Longshore is a senior and will graduate soon. He can move on with his career and get on with his life. His window as a cal QB has closed. HE proved he deserves to be the backup QB. Accept it and move on.