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The media on redemption: 45-31

Posted by Eric | September 3, 2007 at 2:49 pm | In Games |

  2007-09-03-jordangaines-sm.jpg

AP: “No. 12 Cal gets revenge vs. No. 15 Tennessee”

This celebration was a full year in the making the 12th-ranked Golden Bears, who scored one for the whole West Coast when they simply outscored the Volunteers in a redemptive win.

Jackson scampered 77 yards for his sixth career punt return for a touchdown, and Golden Bears avenged last season’s humiliating loss at No. 15 Tennessee with a 45-31 victory Saturday night.

Justin Forsett rushed for 156 yards and a score, and Nate Longshore passed for 241 yards and two TDs as the Bears racked up the most points scored against the Volunteers in 12 years to win the opening weekend’s only matchup between ranked schools.

Though both teams struggled on defense, Cal’s offensive creativity and athleticism were too much for its SEC foes. Once Jackson recovered his cap, he declared the Bears ready for a spot in the national title race in coach Jeff Tedford’s sixth season.

AP: “Cal carries Pac-10 banner, sticks it to SEC”

No. 12 California answered LSU coach Les Miles’ barbs with a resounding 45-31 victory over 15th-ranked Tennessee on Saturday night. …

Cal coach Jeff Tedford shrugged when asked about Miles’ remarks. “I don’t need to respond to his comments,” Tedford said.

His players did it for him. That Cal-Berkeley juggernaut left tire tracks all over the Vols’ white road uniforms.

ESPN: “Revenge golden for Bears in season opener”

Cal traveled the distance from “But, Tennessee,” to “Beat Tennessee,” fueled by big plays. The offense scored a lot. The defense scored once. And Tennessee punted once to DeSean Jackson, which, translated from the language of dumb football, means that the Bears also scored once in the kicking game.

California made big plays and Tennessee did not, which is usually an accurate way to describe any victory. All told, a raucous crowd of 72,516 fans could leave Memorial Stadium confident that their Bears deserve national attention.

CBS News: “Cal squashes SEC arrogance with mauling of Tennessee”

The mistake, Les, was including Cal in your list of Pac-10 patsies. The Bears have become an annual top 15 team under Tedford.

Contra Costa Times: “Cal gives nation reason to care”

Ranked 12th and climbing, Cal used its vast array of playmakers to take advantage of Tennessee’s Southern hospitality before a sold out Memorial Stadium crowd of 72,516.

Playmaker No. 1, DeSean Jackson, provided the thrill everyone expected, a 77-yard punt return for a touchdown. Quarterback Nate Longshore also got into the end zone. So did Robert Jordan. As did Lavelle Hawkins. Ditto Justin Forsett.

“It’s nice to have all those playmakers,” Tedford said. “Everybody was really involved in the game.”

SF Chronicle: “Jackson answers Tennessee’s bold talk with punt return TD”

Phillip Fulmer backed up his pregame talk, punting the ball to Cal’s dynamo DeSean Jackson. But Fulmer made that mistake only once. … Jackson [now] has six career punt-return touchdowns on 27 opportunities.

Tennessee punter Britton Colquitt kicked the next two punts out of bounds for an average of 29 yards.

LA Times: “Cal ‘Pacs’ a punch in beating Tennessee”

Cal tried Saturday to dispel stereotypes about the Pac-10 being a finesse-first conference. On the first series, linebacker Zach Follett made a jarring blindside hit on Ainge that dislodged the ball from the quarterback’s hand and led to a 44-yard touchdown return by teammate Worrell Williams.

Follett heard for a year how soft Cal was last season at Knoxville. This year?

“They folded,” Follett said of the Vols. “In the third quarter, their offensive linemen were taking a knee. So I never want to hear that again.”

Knoxville News Sentinel: “Can’t Bear to watch”

The big plays changed uniforms. So did the winners.

A year ago in Neyland Stadium, Tennessee used an arsenal of big plays to put a season-opening whipping on the California Golden Bears.

Saturday night on the other side of the Continental Divide, it was 12th-ranked Cal ripping off a couple of early big plays and making them stand up for a season-opening 45-31 victory over the 15th-ranked Vols.

Knoxville News Sentinel: “UT’s Karl impressed by Cal’s speed”

As far as skill-position players are concerned, Ryan Karl thinks Tennessee has seen the finest that 2007 will offer.

“Probably the best we’re going to play all year,” the senior linebacker said of Cal’s running backs, receivers and quarterback following Saturday night’s 45-31 loss. “They have better speed than probably anyone we’re going to play all year. All of them have that big-play potential.” … “They have great speed on offense,” Karl said. “It surprised me how fast they were.”

3 Comments »

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  1. I always love your article highlight posts. It’s great to get a glance at what everyone is saying without having to read all of the articles myself. :)

    1. Comment by Ken Crawford — September 5, 2007 @ 7:37 am #

  2. good post. i come here for all my cal football news =) one stop resource shop. keep the quality news about the Bears coming!

    2. Comment by jontsai — September 5, 2007 @ 9:51 am #

  3. ditto

    3. Comment by Raf — September 5, 2007 @ 11:20 am #

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