Football: A tale of 2 woeful defenses

Cal’s defense — beat up and young and thin and overmatched and unable to generate turnovers and prone to missing tackles — has ranked as statistically one of the poorest in the nation all season.

But on Saturday, the Bears’ defense may not be the worst on the field.

That distinction may belong to host Colorado, whose defensive performance throughout the Pac-12 schedule has been even more troublesome.


Colorado WR Paul Richardson poised for another record-setting day


Compare these numbers from each team’s conference games:

    Points per game allowed: Cal 45.9, Colorado 50.5
    Yards per game allowed: Cal 514, Colorado 589.5
    Margin of defeat: Cal 26.1 points, Colorado 34.5

Overall, Cal’s stats are somewhat worse than Colorado’s in most defensive categories. Those numbers don’t account for a disparity in the competition level each club faced in the nonconference.

Cal played Ohio State, Northwestern and Portland State — a top-5 opponent, a preseason top-25 foe (which since has slipped) and an FCS team.

Colorado faced Colorado State, Central Arkansas and Charleston Southern — a .500 team from the Mountain West Conference and two FCS teams.

After a 59-7 loss at Washington last Saturday, CU defensive coordinator Kent Baer counted 37 missed tackles, helping the Huskies total more than 250 yards after initial contact.

“I’ve never been part of that, ever,” first-year CU coach Mike MacIntyre told the Denver Post. “The most I’ve ever been a part of was, like, 20 (missed tackles). If you get above 10, you’re in trouble.”

It’s been a rough season for both teams. But Cal doesn’t have to be the worst defense on the field on Saturday.

Jeff Faraudo

  • 707 Bear

    Was trying to think of a clever title for this game.

    California v Colorado “Something Has to Give”


  • calweasel

    The Penultimate Bowl!

  • Woj

    Cal vs. Colorado = the Toilet Bowl.
    Both are stinky turds, tune in to see which one flushes down the drain first.

  • Woj

    Toilet Bowl 2013 prediction.
    Colorado 2.75 Buhs = 55 Cal = 1.75 Buhs = 37

  • 707 Bear


    You need an Oddball quote from “Kelly’s Heroes.”

    Oddball: “Why don’t you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don’t you dig how beautiful it is out here? Why don’t you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?”

    Moriarty: “Crap.”

    Let me help…”Hey, let’s see if Lawler and Goff can continue their TD combo.”

  • Gobears49

    According to Wikipedia, Baer was the Cal defensive coordinator from 1987 through 1991. Don’t know how he did there. According to the article, Baer had a lousy stint (at least statistically) with Willingham at UW.

    1973–1976 Yokosuka Seahawks
    1977–1982 Utah State (OLB)
    1983–1985 Utah State (DC, DB)
    1986 Idaho (DC)
    1987–1991 California (DC)
    1992–1994 Arizona St. (DC)
    1995–2001 Stanford (DC/LB)
    2002–2004 Notre Dame (DC)
    2004 Notre Dame (Interim HC)
    2005–2007 Washington (DC)
    2008–2009 (San Jose St. (LB)
    2010–2012 (San Jose St. (DC/LB)
    2012 San Jose St. (Interim HC)
    2013–present Colorado

  • Easy Ed


    “The wicked envy and hate; it is their way of admiring.” –Victor Hugo

    Sorry you didn’t get into Cal, does that make it any better?

  • Rollonubears

    A tale of two $hitties. It was the worst of times.

  • Manus

    “If you are going through hell, keep going.” -Sir Winston Churchill

    Go Bears!

  • wehofx

    Juancho, per twitter, udub commit wr Erik Brown is now seriously considering Cal. You buying it?

    You’ve probably seen this but it if you have OMFG!


    Go Bears!

  • wehofx

    woj = moron = joey

  • calduke

    PAC-12 Cupcake Bowl

  • BlueNGold

    Sports handicapper Adam Mayer was making one of his frequent radio appearances this morning on KNBR and he said he expects Cal to beat CU tomorrow, and would not be surprised if they won by 10 or more points.

    Just thought I would spread a bit of sunshine and optimism around for y’all.

  • Does a win in this God-awful match-up mean Sorryful Sonny can keep his job because his record won’t be as bad as Horrible Holmoe’s? Barf!

  • BlueNGold

    Firing Coach Dykes after one season when he has not had a chance to recruit his own guys would be a colossal blunder on many levels. It would be great if Dykes had gotten instant positive results like Tedford did, but unfortunately he did not have the players to pull that off. That does not mean he does not deserve a full opportunity though.

    The Chron reported today that football and male BBall players have been getting admitted to Cal without meeting the GPA and SAT requirements. Expect that story to go viral. There are a lot of dark clouds over Cal athletics right now.

  • KC

    Read the Chron article this AM, what new info does it really provide? Has anybody that follows college sports not been aware that the standards for admission for athletes is a bit lower than the rest of the student body? Even mighty Stanford follows this rule. Lots of dark clouds right now but the Chron putting this article on the front page was pretty lame.

    Anyway, go Bears tomorrow!! Would be great for the coaches and players to feel better about themselves for a week.

  • Story about the study in the Chron complains that Cal athletes have a lousy graduation rate. People who did study recommend that Cal lower coaches salaries and raise admission standards for athletes. Cal has problems getting quality athletes and good coaches now. What do you think will happen if these recommendations go through? You think things are bad now? Just wait..