Will the Passing Game Return to Bears in ‘09?

In 2008, the Cal Defense made a lot of big plays at crucial points in the game that led to a number of Cal victories. After Saturday's scrimmage, when thinking about what the Cal offense must accomplish this season, Kevin Riley stated," In order to be a top 10 team we have to pass the ball better."


Kevin Riley's Post Scrimmage Comments -

The Bears offense might not see a better defense than the one that they face in practice all season. If the offensive side of the ball can start making plays in practice, its success should translate to an efficient offense on game day.

Offenses begin to have success when the defense has to bring their safeties up to help stop the run. Every defense that faces the Bears this season will have a simple, but difficult game plan.

Stop Jahvid Best and Shane Vereen.

Opposing defenses will force California to make plays in the passing game. The Bear receivers should see a lot of one-on-one coverage until they prove they can consistently move the ball through the air.

The question is which players will step up and show that they can make big plays every week.

The quarterback can make the receiver's job easier when the ball is delivered with accuracy. In 2008, Kevin Riley only completed 50.7% of his passes. Riley has to get back to the production he showed in 2007 when he completed 64.3% of his passes.

The Bears' players that lined up on the outside last season were very inexperienced. After a year in the system players like Verran Tucker, Nyan Boateng, and Mike Calvin will have to prove that they can win their individual match-ups with opposing defensive backs.

Spring and fall practice is the time that Riley and the receivers must develop a chemistry that will carry over to games. An explosive player like Best will open things up for all the receivers.

Between now and the September 5 opener against Maryland, the Bears have to find a deep threat and find a way to make big plays in the passing game to make defenses pay for putting extra defenders in the box.

Once Cal is able to do this Best and Vereen will have one less player to worry about.

Wide receiver Alex Lagemann got open deep a number of times during Saturday's scrimmage and might be one of the players ready to step and contribute to the passing game this season.


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