The Bears were back on the practice field this afternoon after two days off, as Thursday’s game at No. 9 Oregon inches closer.
On most Sundays, the Bears are in T-shirt and shorts doing walkthroughs and conditioning in the aftermath of a game the day before. And even after most bye weeks, Sunday’s are a light practice.
But with their next game looming on Thursday, Cal practiced Sunday as if they would on Tuesday, in full pads for over two hours.
The Bears began installing their game plan for the Ducks last week, and after two days off, there was a little concern about how disruptive it would be in terms of retaining what had been installed so far. But coach Jeff Tedford said that was no problem Sunday, and the time off seemed to serve his players well physically.
“It was real good,” Tedford said. “I was really pleased with the retention. It wasn’t that long off. The kids came back really refreshed and lively, bouncing around. I think it helped them.”
Not only does a Thursday game force the Bears to alter their practice schedule, but it has an impact academically as well. Tedford said there may be some players who are forced to miss practice tomorrow becasue of classes. The Bears normally have Mondays off, and although most Monday classes are on a Mon-Wed-Fri schedule, there are some that are just once a week on Mondays. Players take Mon-Wed-Fri classes in the afternoons because of morning practices, but some have Monday morning classes since Mondays are usually a day off from football.
“They are going to miss practice to go to class. Class takes priority,” Tedford said.
A couple of other notes:
- Tedford said sophomore running back Dasarte Yarnway had another knee operation and is lost for the season. Tedford believes it was a procedure to repair his MCL and meniscus. Yarnway had a major knee injury last season as well.
- While the Bears were off over the weekend, wide receiver Keenan Allen dropped from No. 1 to No. 15 in total receiving yards nationally. He also feel from No. 4 to a tie for No. 7 in receiving yards per game.
- Allen is looking forward to playing on the national stage Thursday night. The game will be seen throughout the country on ESPN. “This is what we need as a program,” Allen said. “We need to get ourselves out there, everybody back on our side. We had a bad year last year. We have the chance to make it up with these big games. We have a chance to make a name for ourselves.”