clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NCAA Football Upset Pick of the Week: Can Cal Knock Off BCS No. 1 Oregon?

We ponder whether the California Golden Bears can spring what would be a monumental upset of the #1 Oregon Ducks. For more on the matchup, check out our story stream and California Golden Blogs.

Earlier this week I posted on Facebook asking if anybody I knew had a spare ticket to Saturday's Cal-Oregon game. The first response was, "Why would you want to see that ass-kicking? Lol" And this was from a passionate Cal fan.

Even if Cal was going to get pummeled, you don't get many chances to see the #1 team in the country come to town. Oregon operates an incredibly high powered offense that can be fun to watch. I do enjoy Cal football but compared to say our man Avinash, I'm much more of a neutral observer. Accordingly I suppose I could get away with saying I want to see some quality football from somebody.

Nonetheless, I find myself wondering if the California Golden Bears can somehow overcome the incredibly long odds and spring what would be a monumental upset. As of today, Oregon is a 20 point favorite and the moneyline is off the charts. At one site, Oregon is -950 to win, which means you have to bet $95 just to win $10. At +736, why not throw some money down hoping for the upset?

The Golden Bears have been wildly inconsistent this season. At one point, they alternated wins and losses with scores of 35-7, 48-14, 50-17 and 35-7. Obviously one has to factor in the opponents, but when you're winning and losing games by such margins it's hard to tell what this team can do. They almost sprung a road upset against Arizona, but then got pummeled at Oregon State.

It will be interesting to see if the Bears can play up to their opponent. Oregon is as good as they come right now and Cal would have to play just about a perfect game to pull the upset. The Ducks have scored no fewer than 42 points in a game this season and are leading the nation with an average of 54.7 points per game. To put that in perspective, 2006 saw Western Kentucky average 66.3 points per game and Hawaii average 56.4. I'm not sure how to explain WKU, but those Hawaii offenses were high octane and unconventional. The Ducks offense isn't exactly super conventional, but they're putting up the most points per game in a long time by a power conference team.

Of course, the Ducks could very well overlook Cal. I'm not holding my breath for that, but crazier things have happened...I think. At the end of the day I see no reason why Oregon doesn't roll in this game. And yet, in sports, that is often the precise moment the upset actually happens. If the San Francisco Giants can stun the world and win the World Series, what's to stop Cal from beating the best team in the country?