This still is the beginning for Cal’s football program under first-year coach Sonny Dykes, but time is running out for the team’s nine scholarship seniors.
For defensive end Dan Camporeale, Saturday night’s game against Oregon State is one of six remaining chances to make a statement.
“So for the rest of my life,” Camporeale said, “I can say I’m proud of what we did.”
No one in the program is feeling that sense of achievement so far. The Bears (1-5, 0-3 Pac-12) have lost five games to Football Bowl Subdivision opponents by an average margin of 24 points. Beating the Beavers (5-1, 3-0), led by NCAA passing leader Sean Mannion, won’t be easy.
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CAL VS. OREGON STATE
RECORDS: Cal 1-5, 0-3 Pac-12; Oregon State 5-1, 3-0.
KICKOFF: 7:30 p.m., Memorial Stadium.
SERIES HISTORY: Cal leads 34-31-0, but Oregon State won 62-14 last season at Corvallis, Ore., in former coach Jeff Tedford’s final game. The Beavers have won five of the past six meetings and 11 of the past 14. Cal has not beaten OSU in Berkeley since 1997.
STORYLINES: Two of the nation’s most prolific passers clash when Cal freshman Jared Goff (No. 4 nationally at 2,036 yards) duels Pleasanton native and OSU junior Sean Mannion (No. 1 at 2,511 yards). … The Bears continue to chase their first win over an FBS team since beating Washington State last Oct. 13. . . . Six other Bay Area native play for the Beavers, including defensive end Dylan Wynn of Concord and cornerback Ryan Murphy of Oakland, both starters. Antioch’s Terron Ward rushed for 128 yards against the Bears last season.
INJURY UPDATE: Cal – RB Daniel Lasco (shoulder), CB Stefan McClure (knee), OG Matt Cochran (ankle), C Chris Adcock (knee) are out. Oregon State – TE Connor Hamlett (knee) and Saf Zach Robinson (head) are out.
MATCHUP TO WATCH: Cal’s young cornerbacks vs. Oregon State junior wideout Brandin Cooks. Cal, which ranks second-to-last nationally in passing yards allowed per game (321.8), hopes to contain must try to slow Cooks, who leads the nation’s pass catchers with 63 receptions, 944 yards and 11 touchdowns.
STATS THAT MATTER: The combined record of Cal first five FBS opponents is 25-5. The combined record of Oregon State’s first five FBS foes is 13-17. … Cal has been outscored 96-31 in the first quarter. … OSU has allowed just seven sacks while the Bears have surrendered 20, worst in the Pac-12. … OSU’s defense boasts a conference-best 12 interceptions, including an NCAA-best five by junior cornerback Steven Nelson.