After nine months of reinvention in the wake of the worst defensive season in Cal football history, the Golden Bears reboot Saturday at Northwestern.
Here’s what has changed on defense since a gruesome 63-13 loss to Stanford in the Big Game: A new coordinator, two new position coaches, the return of key players who missed last season with injuries, and the arrival of newcomers recruited to fill holes and add depth.
Will the upgrades allow the Bears to be competitive against a schedule that ESPN ranks as the third-toughest in the nation?
“I like what I see,” coach Sonny Dykes said. “I have a lot of confidence in those guys, probably a lot more than I should based on what I saw last year.”
The Bears’ 1-11 season was defined by a defense that allowed 45.9 points per game last season — second-worst in the country and a school record by a significant margin.
Dating back to the end of the 2012 season, Cal has failed to hold an opponent under 30 points for 14 consecutive games. In 11 of those games, the other team scored 40 or more.
Click here for the rest of this story.