Aside from our genuine hate for the hippies at Kal we have a great respect for our friends, or nuts if you prefer, at The California Golden Blogs. So in the genuine interest working together (really, we are just trying to keep close tabs on them so they don't over run us) we did 5 questions on this weekends big game in Berzerkly.
Here are their answers to our questions...
1 - We are now four games into the season. Cal has had some great games and one stinker. Tell us your surprises and concerns in regards to the overall performance of the team, beyond the last game played.
CGB - Beyond the last game played? Because that one looms pretty large. Its hard to tell what, if anything, is good after that last game. Here's a surprise. Oregon just bent us over. Here's a concern. Oregon just took us to the woodshed. We were humiliated in pretty much every way you can be humiliated. Its hard to really have anything positive to say after a game like that. A concept few USC fans can understand, because of the undeniable success of the team over the last decade.
Read the rest after the jump!
2. Our defensive linemen are very good. I'd monitor Tyson Alualu very closely, he could very well be one of the top DEs in the country. He won that Minnesota game on defense for us by forcing Adam Weber into some very quality throws.CGB -
What should worry any Cal fan is the linebackers. Although Mychal Kendricks and D.J. Holt
are very talented, they are young, and it showed on Saturday, falling asleep on their zone coverages and making very lazy tackles that Oregon's offense broke through with. I'd be very interested to see if Carroll tries to exploit those holes through the middle.
The secondary is still a mystery. They have not performed as well as they did last year, but I'm not sure how much of that has to do with scheme or execution. It remains to be seen whether Syd'Quan Thompson and Darian Hagan
can resume their roles as lockdown corners, because they've been playing a lot more off the ball than they did last year.
3 - It is easy to see that Jahvid Best is a great running back. What are the little things he does that make some so special and what are things that can potentially hamper him?
CGB - He seems to be really good with his patience. Often times, running backs just run straight forward. If there is a hole, yay! If there isn't, not so much. Jahvid is good at waiting for his blocking to develop and go from there. His first highlight run of the year, he had to slow down to let a WR block up-field for him for like 20 yards. Like the world's fastest tango, the WR kept the defensive player at bay while Jahvid sauntered down the field behind them. It showed a level of maturity that was good.
Something that holds him back is his blocking. I am not smart enough to see such things, but am informed that RB blocking is an important part of any NFL hopeful. Apparently Jahvid's blocking is not at the level many would hope for. If he can work on that, he could really succeed at the next level.
4 - Everyone thought that this was Cal's year to finally unseat USC to win the Pac-10, and that could certainly still happen. While no one seriously thinks that Jeff Tedford's job is in jeopardy, is any part of the sane fan base getting restless? Are they starting to question Tedford's ability to seal the deal? Are these people actually 'Furd fans posting under false pretences?
CGB - I, yellow fever, like to think that we Marshawnthusiasts, Jahvidticians, and members of the Follettariat on CGB are largely sane, but speaking personally I think I am getting a little bit restless. This is a bit of a new thing for me as I'm also an Eagles fan who's been largely satisfied with almost winning the Super Bowl rather than actually doing it, but there's something about the tremendous hype and the "THIS YEAR WILL BE DIFFERENT" rhetoric that was coming from all corners of the media leading up to this year.
I don't want to overstate my level of disappointment either, by the way. I even wrote an article for the Examiner here about how Tedford has done a solid job at Cal asking Cal fans to calm the hell down, to realize how far the program has come since the Holmoecaust, and that the only reason these lofty expectations exist for Cal at all are because Tedford is here. So I'm not calling for his firing. I do think last week was a bit of an aberration. But I am getting restless knowing that this will, in all likelihood, be another year without going to the Rose Bowl and another year of not meeting living up to the hype.
5 - Who ya' got and why...What does Cal need to do to win? What can they absorb from USC to win? What would sink you guys?
CGB - Well, we got Cal, of course. What kind of Cal fans would we be otherwise? The only year I didn't think we had a chance was 2005. Ayoobian.
As for what does Cal need to do to win? Well, after last week's debacle, I would say, stop the run, stop the pass, pass, and then run. Not necessarily in that order. I mean our entire world was just turned upside down.
We definitely have to get the running game going. It floundered last week under a relentless Oregon D. The USC D is pretty good, so that could prove problematic.
We also have to get more pressure on the QB. We were doing great with that the first 3 weeks, but Masoli was ready Russian novels in between passes last week. Ai!
The key is always winning the trenches. Get the holes open for Jahvid. And get Cameron Jordan
and Tyson Alualu into the USC Bak-Bakfield.
6 - Finally, everyone knows that you guys are a bunch of deranged commie pinkos hell bent on taking over and dominating the Internet if not the world with your indoctrination and re-education camps. What is your plan to crush the rebellion and absorb that satellite state in Westwood? Have you learned any lessons from the forest guerrillas of ATQ?
CGB - Easy way to get control of that satellite state in Westwood: Bring them the stuffed hide of Karl Dorrell. That opens many doors. Also, invite Neuheezy into your underground Asian gambling den. He loves those things and has many connections within Westwood. I think if we can do that, it'll go a long way towards extending ATQ's dominion even further South. I will do your unholy bidding, JTLight!
We will link up DC Trojans answers to their questions later today!