- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday2 hrs ago
Cal has matched last season's win total. And even if the Golden Bears lose every game the rest of the season and have consecutive 1-11 seasons, 2014 is already better than 2013 because of that lone win.
The Golden Bears' 31-24 win over Northwestern Saturday was the first time Cal beat an FBS-level team since topping Washington State on Oct. 13, 2012. Yes, almost two years, and coincidentally, the same day that Georgia State last won a game before winning on Wednesday night against Abilene Christian.
Last season, Cal's only win came against FCS Portland State. And it was by seven. Of its 11 losses, one was against Northwestern, who beat Cal 44-30.
It wasn't even close to that on Saturday. Cal stormed out to an early lead thanks to two touchdown passes by sophomore Jared Goff. Goff, who was Cal's primary QB last season as a freshman, completed 21-34 and finished with 281 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
Northwestern’s offense hasn’t exactly spent its Saturday afternoon lighting up Cal, but it did have this gem of a trick play to get itself back in the game.
After an interception by senior linebacker Colin Ellis put the Wildcats on the 17-yard line, quarterback Trevor Siemian threw a screen pass to Jayme Taylor who threw it back to Simien. Simien, not known for his running ability or athleticism, somehow made a defensive back bite on his one and only move and then stretched out for the touchdown.
There’s no doubt that said DB will be hearing about that play all season.
The entertaining and painfully slow-developing play cut Cal’s lead to 31-21 late in the third quarter.
For more Northwestern news, visit WildcatReport.com.
For more Cal news, visit GoldenBearReport.com.
- - - - - - -
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
It didn’t take long for Tevaun Smith’s awesome catch from earlier Saturday afternoon to get one-upped.
Nebraska wideout Jordan Westerkamp, known for catching the game-winning Hail Mary pass in the Huskers’ win over Northwestern last season, somehow managed to haul in a Tommy Armstrong pass BEHIND HIS BACK during the third quarter against Florida Atlantic.
That’s right – behind his back. You have to see it to believe it.
I’ve really never seen anything like it. FAU defensive back Christian Milstead actually made a great play to dive and tip Armstrong’s pass, but Westerkamp somehow had the concentration to corral the ball behind his back while getting both feet in bounds.
The catch was part of a great day for Westerkamp. The redshirt sophomore has caught seven passes for 125 yards and a touchdown while the Huskers maintain a big lead in the fourth quarter.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
San Diego State is wearing a helmet decal Saturday to honor baseball legend Tony Gwynn, who died of cancer this summer.
Gwynn played basketball and baseball at San Diego State before he played for the San Diego Padres for 20 years. After he retired from the Padres, he was the baseball coach at San Diego State for 12 years. Gwynn was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007 and finished with a career .338 batting average and 3.141 hits.
Gwynn was first diagnosed with cancer of the salivary gland in 2010. After numerous cancer treatments, he died on June 16. If you're not incredibly familiar with Gwynn's career, this post by Mike Oz at Big League Stew is required reading.
San Diego State starts its season against Northern Arizona.
- - - - - - -LiveLA Dodgers0 - 1San DiegoFollow Game
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday4 hrs ago
The rugby style roll-out punt is designed to prevent opposing teams from both blocking and returning the punt. In the third quarter on Saturday, Youngstown State stopped Illinois from doing either of those things. Because Youngstown State punter Joey Cejudo punted it into the butt of a teammate.
As Cejudo rolled out to the right, he was way too close to one of his blockers. Instead of stopping his momentum and then punting the ball, he went ahead and kicked it anyway while still rolling to the right. It went straight into his teammate.
The box score officially gives the block to Illinois' Joe Fotu – who did a good job of getting penetration on the play – but it's simply a situation where the nearest opposing defender gets credit for the mistake. So while the goof won't live on in infamy via print, it'll survive through video and GIF.
The mishap effectively gave the game to Illinois. At the time of the punt, Youngstown State was winning 9-7. But the ball went out of bounds at the YSU 35-yard-line and Illinois scored on the drive to take a lead it wouldn't relinquish. The Illini eventually won 28-17.
- - - - - - -
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
UCLA’s much-hyped 2014 debut didn’t go the way it hoped, but at least it got out of Virginia with a 28-20 win against the Cavaliers.
The Bruins, a team many thought could challenge for the College Football Playoff, looked out of sorts on offense as Heisman hopeful quarterback Brett Hundley was harassed by the vaunted Virginia defense most of the game.
Hundley completed 20-of-33 passes for 242 yards and had the Bruins’ only offensive touchdown on a 6-yard run.
The day actually belonged to the UCLA defense, which had three first-half touchdowns on turnovers. That kept UCLA in the game early, otherwise Virginia probably should have won the game.
So, the defense answered whether it would be a strength for the Bruins this season, but the offense has a lot of work to do. Virginia’s defense was its strength coming into the season and it showed on Saturday. But what UCLA faced isn’t an anomaly. It’s going to see similar and better defenses in conference play, so it needs to figure what went wrong and correct it in a hurry.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
Ohio State’s first game without Braxton Miller wasn’t easy, but things came together in the second half in a hard-fought 34-17 win over Navy in Baltimore.
Redshirt freshman J.T. Barrett made his first start at quarterback. Despite early struggles, he lived up to his dual-threat billing with 226 passing yards and two touchdowns and 50 rushing yards. Barrett threw just 15 passes, completing 12, as head coach Urban Meyer relied heavily on a bevy of talented running backs, three of whom rushed for more than 40 yards.
With a new quarterback and four new starters on the offensive line, the Buckeyes’ offense looked a bit out of sorts from the jump, but a bruising running game wore the Midshipmen down as the game went on.
The first half trudged to a close after a DeBrandon Sanders one-yard TD run for Navy and two Sean Nuernberger field goals for OSU. The second half was a different story.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday6 hrs ago
Iowa wideout Tevaun Smith gave us an early candidate for top catch of the week early in the second half against Northern Iowa.
Leading 17-13, the Hawkeyes were looking to increase their lead on a third-and-goal from the 6-yard line. Quarterback Jake Rudock looked Smith’s way and the junior delivered, hauling Rudock’s pass with one hand in the back right corner of the end zone to increase the team’s lead to 24-13.
Rudock’s pass was on the money, allowing Smith to make a play despite tight coverage from the Panthers’ Makinton Dorleant.
After registering 24 catches for 310 yards as a sophomore in 2013, Smith was expected to see an increased role this season. Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz has to like what he’s seen from Smith thus far.
Smith's team, however, faced a battle before escaping 31-23.
For more Iowa news, visit HawkeyeReport.com.
- - - - - - -
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday7 hrs ago
Prior to the season, a lot was made about UCLA’s offense and quarterback Brett Hundley as a possible Heisman Trophy contender.
Through the first half of Saturday’s season opener against Virginia, it’s the UCLA defense that’s points on the board for the Bruins.
All of UCLA first-half touchdowns have come off Virginia turnovers — all in the second quarter — and they have the Bruins ahead 21-10 at halftime.
Defensive back Ishmael Adams got the scoring going with an interception returned for 20 yards.
With 2:55 remaining in the half, defensive back Randall Goforth had a 75-yard fumble recovery for a score.
Linebacker Eric Kendricks capped the first-half scoring with a 37-yard interception return with 1:20 remaining the half.
If not for the defense, UCLA would be losing this game because the offense has done very little against a surprisingly stout Virginia defense. Hundley completed 9-of-13 passes for 113 yards in the first half and the running game managed just 23 yards.
If UCLA hopes to win this game, the offense will have to show up in the second half because there’s little chance the defense will be able to repeat its stellar first-half performance.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday8 hrs ago
Ohio State TE Jeff Heuerman ditched his No. 86 jersey for a different one against Navy.
With QB Braxton Miller out for the season with a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, Heuerman wore No. 5 on Saturday.
He posted a picture of the jersey to his Twitter account on Saturday morning.
Last year, LB Ryan Shazier switched to No. 2 from No. 10 in October to honor Christian Bryant after Bryant broke his ankle. Shazier wore No. 2 for the rest of the season. No word if Heuerman will go back to his No. 86 after Saturday or keep wearing Miller's No. 5 for all of 2014.
In 2013, Heuerman had 26 catches for 466 yards and four touchdowns.
Unfortunately, Heuerman didn't put a bandage on the shoulder of his jersey to mimic the Braxton Miller mannequin at the Ohio State bookstore. After news that Miller was out for the season spread,someone put a bandage on the right shoulder (Miller's throwing shoulder) of the mannequin.
- - - - - - -