Does Cal Football have a path to a bowl game?
Sweeping the California schools would do the trick, but could the Bears make it in with just five wins?
The most straightforward answer to those wondering how California might make it to a bowl is by simply winning our next two games—against UCLA and USC—to get a 6–6 record for ye olde traditional bowl eligibility.
And on the flip side, losing both of those games—God forbid—would ensure no path permitting to postseason play.
But what happens if we split the SoCal schools and end up with a 5—7 record? Is the only way the team goes bowling is to buy a few lanes at Albany Bowl?
If there aren’t enough teams that are 0.500 or better, then 5—7 teams get picked based on the value of their Academic Progress Rate (APR). Sonny Dykes and Justin Wilcox have been improving our APR compared to its tanking under Jeff Tedford, but is it enough?
Middle Tennessee State (985)
North Texas (961)
Old Dominion (961)
West Virginia (960)
Virginia Tech (958)
South Alabama (955)
San Jose State (952)
Florida State (942)
The good news is that of the 22 teams still vying for bowl eligibility, California is in a good spot in terms of APR—fourth on the list. The bad news is that per CBS Sports math, there are only nine spots remaining (Ball State clinched their sixth win after CBS Sports published their article).
Cal’s goal—of course—is to win out and sweep the LA schools to earn bowl eligibility. But if we only win one of those games, then we have to hope for at least four spots to go unfulfilled by 0.500 teams and fall to APR scores. So let’s all root for those other 21 teams on that list to lose!