Yes, the Cal defense — having surrendered an average of 45.3 points through four games — ranks last in the Pac-12 and third-to-last nationally.
But it’s scarier than that: No Cal team has allowed 181 points in its first four games.
Not even Tom Holmoe’s 1-10 squad from 2001, which went on to become the worst defensive club in Cal history. Those Bears allowed only 170 points the first four games.
Believe it or not, only one team between 1886 and 1954 — spanning the first 68 years of Cal football – gave up 181 points during an entire season. And that was in 1915, the Bears’ first year back playing football after a decade of rugby, when they allowed 184 points in 13 games.
During the historic 44-0-4 run from 1920 through 1924, Andy Smith’s “Wonder Teams” gave up a total of 139 points. Spread over five seasons.
Sure, football has changed in every way from that era. The seasons are longer, the forward pass came into vogue, etc. The game from a century ago would barely recognizable today.
Still, as relatively recently as 1968, Cal opponents totaled just 114 points in 11 games.
The question at this point: Can these Bears merely hold an opponent under 30 points?