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PAC 12 Trap Game: Oregon at California

PAC 12 Trap Game: Oregon at California

If you’re looking for the perfect definition of a Trap Game look no further than Oregon at California on November 10, 2012. In fact, trap game, a great situational spot, emotional letdown, sandwich game, look ahead and every other college football handicapping cliché can be used to define this game.

Great situational spot for sure

If you like great situational spots then this is the game for you. Cal catches Oregon, in Berkeley, the week after the Ducks play a MONSTER PAC 12 game at USC. Most pundits believe that the winner of the USC/Oregon game will win the PAC 12 Championship and potentially be in line to play in the national title game.

Talk about a potential emotional letdown spot. Entering the Cal game, the Ducks will be either sky high after a huge win over the Trojans or feeling distraught after a huge loss. In either case the Ducks should be emotionally drained, and getting “up” for the Bears should prove difficult.

Back-to-back road games 

The game in Berkeley will also be the second consecutive road trip for Oregon. In addition, Cal will get an extra day of rest and preparation time after having played a home game against Washington the previous Friday (November 2, 2012).

And for an added bonus, though I cannot imagine the Ducks will be looking past Cal, this could also be considered a sandwich games as Oregon plays Stanford the following week in Eugene.

Cal’s Defense

Cal has led the PAC 12 in defense the past two seasons and should be extremely talented on that side of the ball again.

The Cal defensive line could be the best in the PAC 12. Defensive ends DeAndre Coleman and Mustafa Jalil have all-conference talent and the line depth has been bolstered by several years of excellent recruiting.

The Bears also have a lot of young talent at linebacker and three starters returning to the secondary.

QB Zach Maynard is Key

PAC 12 Trap Game - Oregon at Cal

Cal QB Zach Maynard

Cal’s offensive strength is a deep and talented running back group. The Bears return Isi Sofele (1,322 yards rushing & 10 TDs last year), C.J. Anderson and speedy Brandon Bigelow is a potential playmaker.

Keenun Allen is one of the best receivers in the conference and the offensive line returns three starters off of last year’s group.  But the real key to Cal’s offensive success will be QB Zach Maynard and what, if any, improvement he can make in his second season as a PAC 12 starter.

Head coach Jeff Teford insists that Maynard has progressed greatly over the spring and summer and is ready for a big senior year.

Welcome Home 

Cal has beaten Oregon three of the last four games played at Memorial Stadium. The last time Oregon was in Berkeley they were ranked #1 and escaped 15-13 after Cal missed a 29 yard FG attempt late in the 4th quarter.

Because of a yearlong remodeling project, Cal spent last season away from Memorial Stadium.  The cover to their 2012 media guide says “Welcome Home,” the Bears will be sky high for an encounter with the PAC 12 North favorites in their new digs.

Last month the Las Vegas Hilton released their college football GOY point spreads and Oregon was favored by 16.5 points in this game. What do you think of Cal’s chances to cover that spread, or better yet, pulling off the upset in this game? What potential trap games are you looking at this season. Thanks.

- Pez

 

 

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6 Responses to “PAC 12 Trap Game: Oregon at California”

  1. Rich says:

    Cal will be the play in this one, they will cover the spread no matter what the result will be in the USC-Oregon game.

    • Pezgordo Pezgordo says:

      Thanks for the comment Rich. I agree, win or lose that USC game, the Ducks are going to have a difficult time getting up for this one.

      If Cal is having a really solid season up to this point, I really doubt we’ll see that +16.5 spread currently available at the LV Hilton.

  2. Doug says:

    It will be most difficult to Not follow Conan in the Pac 10.
    It is by far the toughest for me, and most.

  3. GoSooners GoSooners says:

    I’m curious to see how both Cal and UW do this year. Something tells me that one or both of those teams are going to play spoiler this season. Cal having a very good DL is going to be half the battle against Oregon. You must have a strong front to stay on the same field as the Ducks. They aren’t making a big deal out of it, but I still think having a new QB is going to be a bit of a liability to the Ducks this year. Although I’m sure many disagree who think UO runs more of a system offense where they can just plug in. But against the very good defenses out there, that inexperience tends to come out more. Especially on the road.

    • Pezgordo Pezgordo says:

      I think Cal is flying under the radar. No one seems to paying much attention to them. Cal has the better defense than UW, so I think they stand a better chance of knocking off Oregon than UW does. They also get UW, Oregon and Stanford in Berkeley.

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