As in beating the Spread Offense? No. As in beating the point spread.
Don’t get me wrong. I think that Cal will win by a fair margin, but I don’t think it’ll be the shootout that some are predicting.
Just a guess: Coaches Dykes and Franklin take the opportunity to run the ball. And run. Two rushes or more for every pass. Give the OL practice with moving bodies, running the ball a lot in long, clock-killing drives, and blocking at the 2nd level. The focus will be on the OL and blocking by WRs.
This offense is hungry to prove itself on the ground, and I think they were somewhat disappointed with their rushing production against Northwestern. They have something to prove. The whole point of a Spread offense is to spread the defense and open up the running game. If we can’t sustain long drives on the ground against the Sac St. defense, then we’re destined to cling to the lower rungs of the Pac-12 ladder.
Look for Goff to throw deep occasionally to keep the Hornet defense honest, but I think they want to win this one the slow way.
Prediction: Cal wins, 31-17.