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Football: Pac-12 picks, Week 5

By Jeff Faraudo
Wednesday, September 26th, 2012 at 5:06 pm in Football, Pac-12 news.

Winning on the road in college football is tough, but Oregon and Stanford will show their merit this week when they venture away from home for the first time this season.

For Cal, which comes off back-to-back road defeats to Top-25 opponents, a return to Memorial Stadium comes just in time. Five of the Bears’ remaining eight games will be played at home, starting Saturday against Arizona State.

Hard right now to envision Cal beating Stanford or Oregon, so the ASU game is  about as close to a must-win as there is in September.

LAST WEEK: 3-2
SEASON: 27-11

Thursday

– No. 8 Stanford at Washington, 6 p.m. (ESPN): The Cardinal’s strengths — running the ball and stopping the run — will cause the Huskies significant grief. Then there’s recent history to consider: Stanford won 65-21 a year ago and Andrew Luck, as good as he is, wasn’t worth 44 points all by himself. Stanford 28, Washington 17.

Saturday

– Arizona State at Cal, 1 p.m. (FX): The Sun Devils are substantially improved, but none of their first four opponents has finished the game with its starting quarterback on the field. That’s just weird. For the Bears, this game means everything. A loss would drop them to 1-4 and pretty much kill even modest dreams. Cal 30, Arizona State 24.

– UCLA at Colorado, 3 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks): Could the Buffaloes actually be overconfident after rallying to win at Washington State while UCLA was upended at home by Oregon State? Yeah, right. A return to reality is on store. We’re still talking about a team that lost to Fresno State by 55 points vs. a team that beat Nebraska. UCLA 40, Colorado 14.

– No. 18 Oregon State at Arizona, 7 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks): Perhaps the best game of the week in the Pac-12. The Beavers seem for real after winning at home over Wisconsin and on the road vs. UCLA. The defense is tough and their passing game is productive. Of course, the Wildcats looked legit, too, until their 49-0 loss at Oregon. Still, Vegas favors UA, and those guys are smart. Arizona 24, Oregon State 21.

– No. 2 Oregon at Washington State, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2): The Ducks are averaging 52.8 points but haven’t played outside Autzen Stadium yet this season. How much difference will that make in this matchup? Oregon 51.8, Washington State 10.

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  • http://CapitolGoldBuyers.com BlakeStreetBear

    Cal wins? Don’t bet on it… f’ing Tedford… grrr…

  • DaveintheHills

    I think we’ll win this game and then lay an egg against UCLA next week. A split this home stand is reasonable.

  • bigdruid

    Cal wins both games. Take it to the bank.

  • 707 Bear

    Has there been a more important game in the Tedford era?

    With hindsight, some games were important:

    1. Riley’s freshman game against OSU which would have given Cal a #1 ranking (at least for a week)
    2. 2006 loss in Arizona which would have sent the Bears to the Rose Bowl (USC lost last game to UCLA).

    I would rank the win at Stanford with Rodgers to get into a bowl game (Insight Bowl) and the win-and-go-bowling loss to UW two years ago as much anticipated games, but if Cal loses this Saturday the heat on Tedford will be turned way up.

    Also, much anticipated games against USC in 2004, 2006.

    Has JT ever “needed” a win as much as this Saturday?

  • BlueNGold

    Cal can win these games if they play smart and don’t make the same dumb mistakes. If that happens, they can progress upward from the OSU game. If they don’t they will be sliding backwards to where they were at the beginning of the season.

  • http://CapitolGoldBuyers.com BlakeStreetBear

    ASU 33 – Cal 23.

    But we will “win the second half.” ;)
    And D’amato will be 3-5 on fgs, with both misses from > 35 yards and all makes from < 25 yards. JT is the king of the spineless 19 yard fg.

    And bigelow will get < 6 touches, again.

    I feel like JT fleeced us…starting to really hate that guy…and hate ain't healthy…

    Anything substantive regarding a new HC??? Actually I will take rumors at this point…please Sandy, do your job.

  • http://CapitolGoldBuyers.com BlakeStreetBear

    BlueNGold, we’ve been backsliding since mid-2007…2008 was decent except for the way we lost to EVERYONE on the road except the awful wsu team…we’ve completely backslid imho. Its just a matter of how much more sliding there is to go…the bottom of the hill ends at 1-11. I’d take the odds in vegas on that wager right now, prolly pays about 100-1 but is really about a 50-50. Who the heck can JT beat in this improving league?

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    BlakeStreetBear Says:
    September 27th, 2012 at 4:05 pm
    BlueNGold, we’ve been backsliding since mid-2007…2008 was decent except for the way we lost to EVERYONE on the road except the awful wsu team…we’ve completely backslid imho.
    ____________________________________________________

    I was just about ready to post the same thing. It is obvious that BlueNGold has no clue. It should be obvious why he doesn’t post more football related material. He reminds me of the Will Ferrell cheerleader imitation on SNL. He will say just about anything to sound knowledgable.

    Only a fool who believes in moral victories would make much of that loss to a very weak OSU team. This kind of fan is the real reason why your football program is treated with so much contempt and scorn.

  • BlueNGold

    Blake, I don’t disagree with you. My reference to backslideng was meant to reference the progress that a team is expected to make during the course of a season. The season is a continuum and one of the markers of success is the ability to learn, improve and eliminate mistakes made in earlier games. The backsliding I was referring to is the tendency to not do so, and keep repeating those same mistakes. What happened in prior years is certainly relevant, but given the turnover on college teams every year, you can’t measure present performance based on what did or did not happen in years past.

    Moron, you are a parasite who has no business being here.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    #9 – BlueNGold

    Blake understood you. You don’t understand football. The reason why your team has continued to backslide every year since 2007 is because your teams make the same mistakes.

    Until which time your team removes/terminates/fires/replaces your HC you can expect more of the same.

    This comment of yours – “What happened in prior years is certainly relevant, but given the turnover on college teams every year, you can’t measure present performance based on what did or did not happen in years past” is simply laughable.

    You most definitely can and it leads right back to your coach.

  • BlueNGold

    I was not addressing you moron. You are a parasite and a liar. Go away.

  • Woj

    I’m a Bear fan and I’ll say it. Gooo Sun Devils!!! Trounce the Bears and help us rid ourselves of that overpaid underperforming stoic dolt in sunglasses Jeff Tedfraud