Rating the Bears: Cal at Oregon State Football
Another coaching casualty in Corvallis
Ten years ago the Bears rode a four-game losing streak into Corvallis before suffering a blowout loss that would lead to some consequential coaching changes. Last weekend the Bears rode a five-game losing streak into Corvallis before suffering a blowout loss that would lead to some consequential coaching changes. Of course, this time we’re only replacing the offensive staff rather than the entire staff, but this is a major shakeup for a program that has not fired any football coaches during the season since…sometime before the Holmoe era? I don’t know, and I’d rather not wade into such gloomy depths right now. This six-game losing streak has been unpleasant enough. Anyway, let’s have a look at what kind of ratings are bad enough to get a coach fired mid-season.
Rating the Bears
After weeks of sub-par performances, pass defense bounces back with the highest score of the week. Unfortunately, that’s still an awful score. All of these are terrible ratings, none worse than the 19.4 score for rush offense. Like the aftermath of the Colorado game, there’s not much to say about these scores. Just look at that wasteland, sigh, and hope things are better this weekend. Speaking of which, our predictions of a win over the Lobsterbacks have dropped considerably. However, we still slightly favor the Bears in this thrilling matchup of 3-7 teams. And apparently the game is selling tickets at an impressive pace. Sickos, all of you (of course, I’d be there too if I weren’t 2500 miles away).
Compared to all our other games against Oregon State since 2010, every single category is worse than usual (that is, it falls below the blue horizontal line).
Those boxes capture the middle 50% of the data for each category, and those are some hugely varied scores. Despite the relatively even nature of the series since 2010 (Cal has won 6, OSU has won 7), the average margin of victory is over 21 points. So we’ve seen everything against the Beavs, from blowout wins to blowout losses.
Compared to the rest of the Wilcox Era, this was bad. Very bad.
Not only do all the data points fall well below the midpoint, nearly all fall into the bottom 25% for their respective categories (that is, they fall below the box capturing that middle 50%).
First, the lowest ratings of the week.
If you’re a regular participant in this series, you know that we rate each category from 0 to 100. Occasionally, we get submissions that rate them on a 0.00 to 1.00 or a 0 to 10 scale. I’m used to correcting such submissions such that they’re on the correct 0 to 100 scale. When I saw the ratings from OLD BEAR 71 and Bluehenbear, I initially thought “I should rescale these from 0-10 to 0-100.” Then I stopped and realized, nope, these single-digit ratings are probably intended, valid ratings this week. FUN TIMES.
Next, the highest scores of the week.
It has been a while since we have seen Calamo’s partner in crime “David Shaw [does some horrific or embarassing thing],” who would also always submit 100% ratings. This week would be quite appropriate for that participant to make a triumphant return…
The Voice of Reason
Finally, the ratings that were closest to the community average.
Let’s check in on the comments to see just how much fun we all had on Saturday night.
Any comments on the gameday experience?
Kj1980 - Joe Starkey sure fails to explain plays well. He is the highlight of Cal Bear football. The experience is much life slowly driving by an accident on the freeway. As Homer Simpson might say, DOH!!!!!!!!!
Bowlesman80 - In the middle of a RV trip. Hurried to set up our Starlink, because, here, at Pismo Beach, there's very poor cell WiFi. Got it up and was able to see some of the Dubs upset of the Duckies. I took the Dubs good performance as a sign of things to come.... Uggh.
BTown85 - I had tickets to the game, but had a bad cold so stayed home. Thank U congestion-inducing virus!
What are your thoughts on Cal's passing game?
1988goldenbear - Musgrave is not the answer. He keeps giving me hope with the occasional positive performance, like against Arizona or USC. But my goodness this is a horrible offense.
Frisco Bear - The Offensive Line's season long dreadful performance forced Cal to throw quickly. Not giving Plummer enough time to completely read the defense, leading to getting picked on slant routes and to run for his life on other plays. An NIL deal with a turnstile company should be on deck for the OL. Horrendous.
Bowlesman80 - 35 degrees, I will give that to Sturdivant, but this goes to coaching, along with all the other dings and damage.
CoBears - Huh? Do we still have this question? The negative WR screens aren't working, for those coaches still coaching.
What are your thoughts on Cal's running game?
Frisco Bear - The inability to block severely limited the entire offense, especially the run game.
Bowlesman80 - Ott for naught but a few yards, If only he had a well-coached o-line to give him a crease.
CoBears - lol. Did we even try to run? Seemed like we gave up on that except where it was expected by the defense.
What are your thoughts on Cal's pass defense?
1988goldenbear - Amazing how open the middle of the field always seems to be. Can something be done about that? Pressure would help.
Frisco Bear - Other than the gimmick play in the 1st quarter, they weren't the defensive weak link...because the running game was.
Bowlesman80 - Mostly okay, only gave up a few big plays.
OLD BEAR 71 - Stinko.
What are your thoughts on Cal's run defense?
CoBears - Not good, except that one extraordinary play that netted us a TD. Earby played solid run support.
Bowlesman80 - Martinez is a force and he has blocking to make it happen.
Frisco Bear - OSU's top 5 rushers averaged >4.5 yards per rush. Not a good night for them. The scoop and score was the only highlight of the game.
1988goldenbear - The defense got tired because the offense couldn't sustain any drives.
What are your thoughts on Cal's special teams?
BTown85 - Michael Luckhurt’s two tackles were the highlight of the game! Too bad he’s not our punter and could have stopped the TD return.
CoBears - Even special teams SUCKED in this game. Do we not have good coverage lanes? Punts seemed pretty good until we whiffed on tackles on returns.
Bowlesman80 - Longhetto on a time out for missing another long shot? They keep implicitly blaming the players.
Goldenone - Irrelevant. I did see a missed field goal, that was exciting
Frisco Bear - Missed FG, OSU's kick returns were awful. Only decent thing was our punting game/
What are your thoughts on the coaching staff's performance?
CoBears - Given this game, I'd fire everyone. OC and line only? OK, but what took 2 1/2 years? What a bummer of a lost season. Troy Taylor, please. Let him win his championship first, but make it top priority to get him here. Shoot, get Tedford back. Get anyone who knows how to score.
OLD BEAR 71 - You must be talking about the guys on the sidelines with headsets and clipboards who don't have any idea what the other team is doing to blow up Cal's running game, and get sucked in on fourth down trickeration? I used to hope for half time adjustments. This group can't even make adjustments to start the game. By now they have had eight full games of tape to learn trends, isolate strengths, and exploit weaknesses. And then come Saturday and game plan looks like they just found out who they were going to play after they got on the plane. Cal football will 3-9 this year. Furd will take the axe home from our house, ucla will use the Bears to mop the turf. Can we fire a coach for cause, if insanity is a condition? "Doing the same thing and expecting....."
1988goldenbear - We looked so unprepared. Musgrave has to go. I hope we can retain our skill players on offense. We have to beat Stanford next week.
What are your thoughts on Cal's overall performance?
1988goldenbear - What a miserable game to watch. Bad on both sides of the ball. Dominated by the Beavers. Feels bad man.
Frisco Bear - The Bears didn't quit. They never have. Need to find out if Plummer is coming back for a Super Senior year. If not, put in Milner. Thank Oski, 'Furd is horrible and we might get one more win this season.
Kevin - Watching this game on TV, it was immediately over. We had nothing working and no energy. They had everything working and plenty of energy. It was relieving in some ways to not have to care about the game, even while it was on.
Bowlesman80 - I blame tepid and hobbiling support from the administration, as number one cause of failure, but, increasingly, it is becoming clear that JW, though very likeable and charismatic, is beyond his reckoning. I think we do ourselves a disservice when we think of only Troy Taylor as our next HC. As much as I hate to say it, Jim Harbaugh is the kind of coach we need and he has proven success at a P5 "public Ivy." This program is nearing a complete meltdown and administration needs to go all in or fold. The time to stop the implosion is now! But, watch, empty rhetoric and copious excuse-making and inaction will follow this rally cry.
CoBears - I have punished myself for so many years watching these Bears, that some losses just dully fall into the background. Rarely do losses sting like salt rubbed into a wound as this atrocious effort does. We just did not show up in any phase of the game against the Beavs. At all. I worry that this does not bode well for the team showing up against 'Furd, though I will still hold out hope against hope.
Well, that was fun. See you next week!