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

  • MamaBear07

    We had a great time in Berkeley last night. The win would have been awesome but all things considered we did the best that we could without any real passing game. Those duds on ESPNU talked crap about how Oregon was gonna score 60, even 70, on us and yet we held our own against the number-freaking-one team in the country! Superb effort, Bears!

    A few things from my point of view in the young alum section of the stands:
    1) No excuses for Tavecchio – who does his thing on kickoffs but just isn’t clutch for FGs – but the OU fans were pretty loud on that side of the field. I wish we would have been able to kick before the end of the 3rd because we had momentum on our side then and Giorgio wouldn’t have been kicking into the OU fans. The Cal crowd was pretty pumped about our Bears rolling down the field in the 3rd and it just wasn’t the same when the 4th started.

    2) Speaking of momentum, I get the thing about ‘fake’ cramping and all that, but I just can’t believe our guys would do that. It seemed to happen at the worst possible times, when we had momentum on our side and were on the verge of closing drives. Besides, the speed was intense with OU’s no huddle… Is it really implausible that these big dudes might cramp or hurt themselves in the midst of that as long as they had been on the field?

    3) From our side of the field, there were some pretty significant holding no-calls on OU’s last long drive to run down the clock. Makes me wonder what our offense could have done with another chance with the ball. Vereen’s fumble was significant but I would have liked to see more running afterward. Seems we were trying to force passes but I think Shane would have protected that ball with everything he had if given that chance more often.

    I have no idea how the game looked on TV, but the atmosphere was electric. Even though we lost, leaving the stands didn’t feel as deflated as watching the closing minutes of our pre-WSU road games on TV. OU might have won, but I think they’ll lose their #1 ranking today. It’s not much of a consolation but if it happens, it’s because of what our guys were able to do in Bear Territory. I’m proud of them. Looking forward to stunning Stanfurd next week. The Axe is ours! GO BEARS!

  • Juancho

    What a tough loss.

    But got to give Tedford and his staff credit. They had the kids ready to play and they certainly played an inspired game. Just too bad they came up just short.

    Hopefully this is the start of us turning it around and finishing strong. If we can get our special teams back to where it was a couple of years ago, including having a returner that is a threat to take it to the house the way Desean was – we’ll have a shot at a great year next season.

    Brock was still a bit sloppy and inaccurate. But I have faith that he’ll figure it out. The experience he’s getting now will help him be a star next year.

  • Caladan

    Damn! I thought Tavecchio was a Senior, but I see on the Cal roster he’s a Junior. I was hoping we were done with this weenie after the season. Tedford needs to focus on recruiting a kicker and just sitting Tavecchio for the rest of his college career.

  • Dan

    All these clowns throwing a walk on kicker, Tevecchio, under the bus is pathetic. He’s just a kid, like 19 years old, paying his own way at Cal, and got the kicking job because Tedford generally insists on not giving scholarships to kickers, instead loading up on doomer QBs – what does he have, like 1

    What about Marvins Jones dropping 3 more passes? Or Anthony Miller dropping a pass. How about the lame decision to go for 2 so early, or the terrible play cll choice on that play?

  • Calduke

    JT already has one PK on scholarship. Does he need 2?

    Mr tedford and Staff – it’s the time of the year for some serious recruiting. Cal is currently far behind in the recruiting race. If you don’t get going, it will be like the past few years; too little, too late.

  • Dan

    All these clowns throwing a walk on kicker, Tevecchio, under the bus is pathetic. He’s just a kid, like 19 years old, paying his own way at Cal, and got the kicking job because Tedford generally insists on not giving scholarships to kickers, instead loading up on doomed QBs – what does he have, like 17 QBs on the roster, when it really doesn’t matter who the QB is?

    What about Marvin Jones dropping 3 more passes? That guy has dropped more passes so far this season than a good college receiver would drop in a career. Or Anthony Miller dropping another pass? How about the lame decision to go for 2 so early, or the terrible play call choice on that play? Or the terrible play calling in general. Or the awful special teams play? Or Vereen’s fumble, which was a backbreaker (I hate to criticize Vereen, as he is an absolute stud, a warrior- but man Shane, 2 fumbles?)…

    There is plenty of blame to go around. Team’s win together, lose together. Tavecchio is doing the best he can. Leave him alone.

    I thought all the leg cramps was tacky- people would be calling Kelly, Harbaugh, or Kiffin classless jerks if they did that. What does that make Tedford?

    Kudos to Pendergast and the D- they showed huge passion, heart, execution. Wish we could see that EVERY game.

  • Jim

    Recall the angst of Tedford when people booed Ayoob.
    Now here’s Tedford, not for the first time, publicly castigating a player, an action that is far worse than catcalls from isolated, anonymous fans.

    Tedford is too much of a pampered puss to be able to man up to his own and increasing difficulties as a coach.

    But blaming one player for losing the game is really, really low – especially when it’s not true. Time for him to go – and certainly not get any more extensions.

  • Daredevil

    I am certainly not trying to defend Tedford too much, as I think he needs to go. But I am all for accountability and he has generally been too nice in covering up for players who are not getting the job done. So why not say that Tavechhio needs to do better? He does! Sure, he’s just a kid. But since when is there not accountability in sports, back to grade school? Tedford is getting paid a salary that warrants wins not just getting close. You think Nick Saban isn’t pushing his kids to the max? If we want a winning program we need to have kids that can deliver. This is the second game where Tavechio arguably lost it for us. Not on super long field goals but on ones he should make. You can’t gloss that over. You need to say he isn’t getting it done and spend the time with one of the other kickers to see if they are mentally tough enough to do during a game what they do in practice.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Sorry Dan, but when you have only two jobs, kicking off and kicking FGs, it’s fine in my book to criticize him for the penalty. The miss, that happens, but the penalty was a pure choke.

    I don’t blame him for the loss. I give that to Ludwig, who is so obsessed about keeping a team off balance he fails to attack their weaknesses. I swear, he would run against a 1985 Bears 46 defense more than 50% of the time, because they wouldn’t be expecting it.

    Oregon couldn’t stop quick hitting power runs, but Ludwig would opt to throw deep on a first down or use a slow developing finesse run, both right into the hands of Oregon’s weaker but faster defense.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    My worst Ludwig moment of the night was his choice to have Mansion throw a touch pass on the 2 pt conversion attempt. Mansion was having so much trouble, I thought it was like a baseball manager asking a pitcher who can’t throw strikes to walk the bases loaded intentionally with no regard for the likelihood he’ll walk in a run. It should have been a run, or perhaps a bootleg where Mansion had the option to try and run in if the WR was not open. As soon as he stepped back to throw that ball, all I could say was, “really?”

  • Rocko

    Going for two so early? Are you talking about Oregon? Because if your talking about CAL it wasn’t the time left it eas the terrible call by whoever called that play. So we go for one instead of two. Wow! We only lose by one point then!

  • Bears

    If we had a good QB Bears win that game by 10 points.
    Really sad about the state of our offense.
    If they do not put lots of points on the board we will lose to our rival Saturday.
    Defense needs to continue to bring it and ST’s/O need to step up and win a game this year they are not supposed to.
    Last chance is this coming Saturday. Hope they are tough enough and want it bad enough.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    Rocko, was that toward me? I was complaining about the play call, a touch pass by a guy who was not accurate at all up to that point.

  • gotwood

    Tedford didn’t blame the loss on the kicker he just said the mistake was inexcusable. And the mistake wasn’t missing the kick, it was the penalty before it. Tedford wasn’t throwing a player under the bus. Stop looking at the negative side of everything. Tedford had his players ready to play against the best team in the country and came up a little short. There is nothing wrong with that it’s just unfortunate.

  • Jim

    Tedford is inexcusable.
    The offense stunk.
    Tedford did not have the backup quarterback ready to play.
    Tedford needs to own up to his miserable performance before he starts publicly getting on his players.
    Gotwood, are you Tedford’s mother?

  • 707 Bear

    Many have commented on Tedford’s complex offense.

    Could another disadvantage of his offense be the time it takes a backup to “get up to speed?”

    Seems that our offensive system is predicated on the arrival of the next Rodgers or Joey Harrington. Is this expecting too much from the most important postion on the field?

    Go Bears! Beat Furd!

  • B

    The Bears lost because of the Quarterback play. You can’t beat the number one team with a completely inept passing game. I have a hard time blaming Tedford; Mansion showed why Riley gave the Bears the best chance to win.

    What is inexcusable with regard to Tedford is how this team clearly does not play to the best of its ability every week. Its the coaches job to get the best out of his players. Its obvious that the team that showed up against Nevada, USC, and Oregon State was not same team that played Colorado, Arizona, UCLA, ASU and Oregon. You also cannot blame it on the personnel because this has been going on for about four years now.

    So Tedford has to figure out what he’s doing to prevent his players from playing their best every week. I say give him at least another year, but I’m not firmly in his corner as I have been.

  • Calduke

    It’s a bit of a downer when the opposing team goes for it on fourth down, on the opening drive, deep in their own territory – twice!!

    Is Chip Kelly being boorish to our defense or our offense??

  • rollonyoubears111

    My wife and I were at the game. QQ was electric! even the old blues in front of us were standing with their ears plugged. There were a lot of issues on offense that we noticed that led up to our loss. Brock and his receivers were NOT playing well. Vereen’s fumble was super crucial, and Giorgio’s kick was crucial but probably would not have been the game winner because of our offense. I really hate that ESPN and Ted Miller thought that the Oregon D helped win their game, because I think our offense was just awful. Vereen TD in the 1st was helped by our field position. That was the only reason for our offensive score. Our receivers could not catch. Our QB threw to the ground or too high for our receivers to make plays. There weren’t enough downfield blocking for Vereen.

    The D was awesome. It wasn’t because Oregon’s offense was playing sloppy, but because our Defense was TENACIOUS! Aside from that last, painful, time consuming drive, our D was playing their hearts out against the #1 offense. Their only TD came when Vereen fumbled the ball deep into our territory and #23 was outplayed by his assignment.

    I really think that we should’ve won this game. Our Offense and special teams need help.

  • Dan

    You have to lump in many more dropped passes in addition to Mansion’s many poor throws. Both were big reasons the offense was so poor, along with the head scratching play calling. All just drive killers.

    Also, the officiating was hard to take. I was at the game in section TT on the east side, and the Oregon right tackle was holding on play after play, especially (very visibly) on the final Oregon drive. It’s as if he does it every time, the refs can’t call it every time. Tedford was going nuts screaming at the line judge, an old codger, on that side. He had every reason to go ballistic- it was blatant and called only once.

    Also frustrating officiating-wise was how long it took some blatant Duck penalties to be called, and how the refs closest to the blatant penalties either
    missed it or decided not to call it, leaving a ref pretty far away to throw the flag very late. Just, once again, the most pathetic officiating in the country is in the Pac 10.

  • MamaBear07

    Rollonyoubears111, hubby and I were in QQ too (row 12) and LOVED the energy on Saturday night. I got the old blue in front of me plugging his ears, but he and his wife were standing on the bench a few minutes later for the remainder of the game.

    Dan, totally agree about the holding no-calls throughout and especially at the end. It was driving our group nuts too. I think I read somewhere that OU is among the most penalized in the Pac-10…. The calls against them helped us stay in the game, but the no-calls made it harder to close it out.