It was an incredibly terrible half of football in Berkley, but the Cal Bears emerged from the destruction with a 3-0 lead after Giogio Tavecchio hit a 53-yard field goal as time expired. There are no words to describe just how bad the half was for both sides. Quarterbacks Jake Locker and Brock Mansion are locked in tight battle of ineptitude, struggling to only 107 yards and two interceptions combined.
It’s been a rugby scrum thus far, with the run game being the only aspect of each offense working. Cal holds the edge on the ground, rushing for 131 first half yards to Washington’s 71. Shane Vereen led the way with 65 yards on 11 carries. Washington’s Chris Polk was close behind with 60 yards on 10 carries. And that’s about the extent of the offensive production.
After a scoreless first quarter with no turnovers, the mistakes came in bunches in the second. Washington running back Jesse Callier put the ball on the turf just five plays into the quarter, killing a drive in Cal territory. Not content to let Callier steal the spotlight, Mansion threw an interception on the next play. Locker answered with an interception of his own on the next possession.
Only some bad clock management and the best two passes of Mansion’s day put the Bears in position to hit a long field goal and break the scoreless tie. They did just that, taking a 3-0 edge into the half. It’s an edge that just might hold if the game progresses as it has in the first half.