Sep 7, 2013; Berkeley, CA, USA; California Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff (16) celebrates with wide receiver Maurice Harris (3) after his touchdown catch against the Portland State Vikings during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
As per every Monday going forward though the football season, Golden Bear Lair will name its MVP for that weekend’s game.
In my second watching of the game, there were more than a few options to consider. Richard Rodgers and his 75-yard touchdown reception was probably the turning point of the game. I personally felt Khaifani Muhammad had a solid game and was critical down the stretch. Bryce Treggs went over 100 yards and looked like a man amongst boys at times.
That said, none of those things – much less the victory over Portland State – happen without the play of one Jared Goff. I guess it’s only fitting that the first edition of this award goes to quarterback Jared Goff. He is the future of Cal Football, and he could be the man who takes Cal from the depths of mediocrity to the ranks of the elite. Until that happens though, let’s just watch the kid blow teams away.
Statistically, his numbers were world-beating. Goff followed his 450-yard performance against a very good Big Ten team in Northwestern with a 485-yard two-touchdown outing. He went 33-for-51 and distributed the ball to ten different receiving targets, including the aforementioned Treggs 8 times. He also rushed for a touchdown, which gets lost in the outrageous passing performance he up. Let’s just say he Chuck Norris’d Portland State.
In Cal’s 121 (1882-2013) year history, there had only been four quarterback performances that went over 400-yards. In his two games at Cal, Goff has done it twice. He has put himself in prestigious company.
This team may not be good this year. Based on what we saw in this game, they probably won’t be much better than their 3-9 record last season. But what this team has is a program-building player who can change the future outlook of said program. Most importantly, he showed that he’s more than a quarterback with a high skill-set and a cannon for an arm. He showed that he is a leader.
Not many true freshmen can put a team on his back, much less one playing as poorly as Cal was on Saturday, and pull a win out.
Again, think of what you were doing as a freshman. I know I wasn’t doing much more than trying to find the next 21-year old to buy me some alcohol so I could impress some girls on in my dorm. I wouldn’t have been able to stand in front of 43,000 fans (albeit that number is a dramatic overestimate) who want nothing more than to watch a winning product of the field. Not to mention, he’s only two games in. What happens in a season or two from now with a more experienced (and possibly talented) team around him?
The possibilities are endless.