San Diego State was San Diego State on defense in a dominant opener, while Cal got time off to relax after having fun with Hawaii in Australia. Check out the California vs. San Diego State fearless prediction and game preview.
California vs. San Diego State Game Preview
Date: Saturday, September 10th
Game Time: 10:30 pm
Venue: Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, CA
Network: CBS Sports Network
Why California Will Win
Just how much will it help to get two weeks off to prepare? The Bears got their win over Hawaii, flew back, and unlike the Rainbow Warriors who had to go off and deal with Michigan, they got to rest up. Against one of the best defenses in college football, that should matter.
San Diego State did exactly what it was supposed to do against New Hampshire, but the running game – surprisingly – was just okay, while the passing attack didn’t do much to move the chains.
There weren’t any problems overall thanks to the defense, but against the fast-moving Bears, the more long drives, the better. If Cal D can be better on third downs than they were against Hawaii, the more the offense can get on the field. Yeah, duh, of course that’s how it works – more defensive stops equals more offensive moments – but for Cal it’s all about at-bats. They want to run lots and lots of plays if possible.
Davis Webb has been sort of forgotten about since it seems so, so long ago when he cranked it up in the opener, but he took to the Cal offense immediately throwing for 441 yards and four scores with no picks Can he solve the San Diego State defense with quick strikes and getting the ball out of his hands in a hurry? Take what’s there, don’t get greedy, and don’t force anything against this D – he can do that.
Why San Diego State Will Win
San Diego State’s defense isn’t Hawaii’s. The loaded Aztec defense held New Hampshire to just 141 yards of offense giving up just one decent pass play. It was a brilliant game across the board with the secondary locking down from the start, and it’s about to do the same to the Bear receivers who ran free way too often against Hawaii. Cal will complete passes, but this week the yards after the catch won’t be there.
On the other side, Hawaii couldn’t tackle well in the open field, and neither could Cal. No, it wasn’t an impressive performance by SDSU star running back Donnel Pumphrey against New Hampshire – he averaged 4.7 yards per carry – with 98 yards and a score only breaking free once, but that’s about to change.
The Bear defense allowed 248 yards in the opener with too many big runs and too many missed opportunities. The Aztecs should do a better job of getting its backs in space than they did against New Hampshire.
What’s Going To Happen?
This will be San Diego State’s national statement moment. The defense will get to Webb to keep him from ever getting comfortable, and the secondary will do a great job of keeping everything in front of them – there won’t be a lot of Bears running free.
Cal won’t get shut down cold, but it’ll never get comfortable. Meanwhile, the Aztec running game will break out.
California vs. San Diego State Prediction
Final Score: San Diego State 31, California 17
Line: San Diego State -7, o/u: 62
ATS Confidence: 5: Run to the Window – 1: Watch For Fun … 3
Must See Rating: 5: Sully – 1: Skip & Shannon Undisputed … 3