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November 3, 2012
Comedy of Errors, Carnival of Terrors
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VIDEO: Tedford says "program is fine," after loss
PHOTOS: Pregame Photo Feature with Recruits!
VIDEO: Chris McCain Postgame
BERKELEY -- Two interceptions and 10 fumbles (six lost) plagued both offenses in a nationally-televised contest geared towards promoting the Pac-12. Both teams turned the ball over six times, and both California and Washington scored three times. But, in the final estimation, this game was far from even, as the Bears (3-7, 2-5 in the Pac-12) fell, 21-13 to the Huskies (5-4, 3-3), and may have lost their starting quarterback in the process.
The loss ensures that Cal will have its second losing season under head coach Jeff Tedford -- both coming in the past three seasons - and also ensures that the Bears will not be playing in a bowl game.
"The bowl game situation is obviously disappointing," Tedford said. "It is not something we are used to. You work very hard - the players and the staff invest a lot of time and energy - so it's always disappointing to not be able to play in the postseason."
Senior quarterback Zach Maynard may not play another down of college football, period, after severely injuring his left knee late in the fourth quarter. With 4:01 to go, Maynard ran up the middle on a zone read for a gain of two, but was taken down by his leg by a rolling Huskies defender.
He will go for an MRI some point "soon," according to Cal officials.
Before going down, Maynard completed 15 passes on 29 attempts with one interception for 175 yards.
Cal inside linebacker Nick Forbes recorded a game-high 11 tackles, 0.5 for loss, recovered two fumbles and tallied his first career pick to lead the Cal defense on the night. Tailback C.J. Anderson led the offense with 160 yards on 22 rushing attempts, while freshman wide receiver Chris Harper stepped into injured Keenan Allen's big shoes nicely, catching seven passes for a career-high 101 yards. Fellow freshman Darius Powe had a career-high three catches for 32 yards.
"Harper wants to step up every week," Tedford said. "He is a very talented guy who is learning each and every week on things like timing and ball security. Unfortunately, he put one on the ground last week, but he cares a lot, as does Darius Powe. Those are great young guys with great attitudes. They are very strong competitors."
Harper also led all players in most plays reviewed by the officials. Three of his seven receptions were so extraordinary that the game had to be stopped to check and see if they were indeed made.
After forcing an Isi Sofele fumble at their own 21, the Huskies put together a drive that lasted 11 plays and went the entire 79 yards for the game's first score -- a Bishop Sankey four-yard touchdown run.
On the drive, junior quarterback Keith Price connected with sophomore tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins three times for 41 yards. Seferian-Jenkins led all receivers with seven receptions for 189 yards on the night to go along with one touchdown catch. Seferian-Jenkins moved into a first-place tie with Jerramy Stevens on the program's single-season tight end receptions with an eight-catch, 154-yard night before all was said and done.
Washington's opening score, with 6:23 remaining in the first quarter, kept the Huskies in the lead for most of the first half. With just 2:46 before the break, the Bears would even the score with a touchdown run of their own.
Cal got the drive start after defensive lineman Keni Kaufusi broke through the Washington offensive line to disrupt a conversion attempt on fourth and one from the Cal 34. Washington's fourth-down play resulted in a loss of a yard and a Bears' first down. Kaufusi would leave the game with 7:09 left in the second quarter with what would be diagnosed as a broken kneecap. After the game, Tedford said that Kaufusi would be out for the rest of the season.
Nine plays and 65 yards later, Harper took the ball on a reverse from Sofele for a 14-yard touchdown scamper, touching the front pylon of the north end zone with the tip of the football to tie the game going into the half.
Vince D'Amato connected on two field goals to bring his consecutive field goals streak to 11 to start the second half, giving the Bears a 13-7 lead with 3:59 remaining in the third quarter. Cal seemingly had all of the momentum.
That positive outlook for the 42,226 home fans in attendance lasted just a little more than three minutes.
After falling behind by six, the Huskies marched down the field from their own 37-yard line, taking just five plays to erase the Bears' lead with a highlight-worthy touchdown pass from Price to 6-foot-7, 266-pound Seferian-Jenkins in the end zone, wearing junior cornerback Steve Williams like a coat.
Sefarian-Jenkins -- covered well by the 5-foot-10, 185-pound Williams -- leapt straight up, extending his arms to grab the incoming pass from Price. As the tight end came down with the ball, his right arm hit Williams's shoulder, causing the ball to bobble out of his hands. After landing on one leg, Sefarian-Jenkins watched the ball fall back into his hands just before he tumbled to the blue turf for the score.
Seferian-Jenkins passed Dave Williams on the Huskies' all-time tight end receiving yards list (1,133), as he upped his career total to 1,170 yards.
On the ensuing Bears' drive, they would put themselves in position to take the lead right back. A seven play, 44-yard drive would be stopped at the Huskies' 24 yard line -- giving D'Amato an opportunity to extend his streak. His 41-yard attempt missed wide right.
Both teams would punt on their next respective drives, before a comedy of errors took the game over. On four consecutive possessions -- two for each team -- the ball would be turned over by fumble or interception.
Shaq Thompson -- once upon a time, a Cal commit, before switching to Washington along with former Bears defensive line coach Tosh Lupoi -- picked off Maynard, returning the ball 33 yards to put an end to the streak after setting the Huskies up on the Bears' 28-yard line. Four consecutive runs by Sankey resulted in one-yard plunge by the sophomore tailback to put Washington up 21-13 with 4:11 left to play.
Cal made a valiant effort to tie the score -- driving 44 yards on 10 plays to the Washington 25-yard line after losing Maynard to a knee injury on the first play of the drive. Junior quarterback Allan Bridgford completed two of seven passes for 27 yards, but couldn't connect on fourth and five with a little over a minute remaining in the game.
-- Harper scored on his first career rush, a 14-yard reverse towards the end of the second quarter that tied the score at seven.
-- Forbes's outstanding day included his first interception of his Cal career. The interception prevented the Huskies from a score when he picked the pass off at the Cal four-yard line and returned it 26 yards to the Bears 30.
-- Anderson recorded his third 100-yard rushing game of his career -- all this season. A good part of his team-leading 160 yards came on his second longest rush of his career -- a 64-yard run that played a huge part on the drive that resulted in D'Amato's 23-yard go ahead field goal early in the third quarter.
-- D'Amato had connected on 11 straight field goals until missing a 41-yard attempt in the fourth quarter. It was the first time the Cal kicker had missed a field goal attempt since Sept. 22, against USC.
-- This was Washington's first win on the road since Oct. 1 of last season against Utah.
Stay tuned for more notes, quotes, video and analysis.