12:20 First Quarter; Stanford 3, Cal 0
Things started out poorly for Cal. Quarterback Brock Mansion had trouble on the opening series. He fumbled the first snap of the game but was able to recover it; he fumbled again on the third snap but wasn't as lucky. The Cardinal recovered, gained fifteen yards on a pass interference penalty, then tallied a Nate Whitaker field goal.
8:05 First Quarter; Stanford 3, Cal 0
Like he usually does in big games, Richard Sherman just came up with a big play. As Cal was driving down the field and headed towards a certain score, Sherman picked off an errant Mansion pass near the Stanford goal line.
6:29 First Quarter; Stanford 3, Cal 0
Another Golden Bear mistake, this time a defensive offsides on third and four, gives the Cardinal another chance. We'll see if Andrew Luck and company can make them play. On an unrelated note, I'm not sure if I'll be able to listen to Petros Papadakis for three more hours.
4:46 First Quarter; Stanford 3, Cal 0
Andrew Luck just rattled off his third 50-yard run of the season, this one a fifty-eight yard ramble through the middle of the field. The highlight was when a little Bear Cub defensive back tried to get in his way and simply bounced to the ground.
3:46 First Quarter; Stanford 10, Cal 0
Indeed, the Cal offsides penalty has come back to haunt the Bears. Stepfan Taylor just ran the ball in from five yards out, capping a 95-yard drive.
End of First Quarter; Stanford 10, Cal 0
There are two stories so far, I think. One, the Stanford defense doesn't seem to be able to stop the Cal offense. Two -- and this is why the score is what it is -- Cal can't stay out of their own way. Two turnovers plus six penalties in the first quarter is recipe for disaster.
10:44 Second Quarter; Stanford 17, Cal 0
Stepfan Taylor's second touchdown of the day -- untouched, five yards -- caps an 85-yard drive. If this lead gets much bigger and Cal has to away from the run, things will get ugly. As for the Cardinal, this drive was about Andrew Luck. He received more pressure than he's used to seeing, but he was able to step up in the pocket, look to his second and third receivers, and complete passes downfield for first downs. Back-up Alex Loukas came in late in the drive to take a snap and run an interesting counter play, jabbing to the right before following his blockers to the left and down the one-yard line. Taylor took over from there.
5:40 Second Quarter; Stanford 17, Cal 0
I love Doug Baldwin.
2:47 Second Quarter; Stanford 24, Cal 0
Ho hum, another long touchdown drive, this one ninety yards, culminating with a fourteen-yard bullet from Luck to tight end Zach Ertz. Sorry about all this, Cal fans. Be sure to turn out the lights when you leave.
1:48 Second Quarter; Stanford 24, Cal 0
After moving the ball fairly well, the Brock Mansion Turnover Machine strikes again, this time delivering an interception to Michael Thomas at the Cardinal 39. The squeamish should probably look away, because things are about to get ugly.
End of Half; Stanford 31, Cal 0
Holy smokes. His name is Doug Baldwin, but you should probably refer to him as Mr. Baldwin from here on out. I've been touting him all year long, and I love that the senior is having such a huge game. He just caught a touchdown pass from Luck, rising up between a double team and coming down with the ball. An amazing catch. And how is Mr. Luck doing? 10 of 12 for 164 yards and two touchdowns.
As the Cardinal forces disappear into the tunnel for halftime, let's remember a couple things. This is a Golden Bear defense that has been nothing short of dominant at home. As recently as last week they held the top offense in the country under twenty points; the Mighty Card has 31 in two quarters. Harbaugh must love what he sees, right? "We're doing alright right now," he said. He then went on to praise the offense. "Really impressed with our receivers. Doug Baldwin is making some amazing plays. Andrew Luck has had a good first half, so we'll come back out, we've got a lot of football to played here, but I'm happy with the way our guys played smart, disciplined football." He didn't mention what he has planned for the second half, but I guessing it has something to with a woodshed and an Axe.
12:09 Third Quarter; Stanford 38, Cal 0
If you blinked, you missed it. There was really no resistance from the Cal defense on that drive. Stepfan Taylor capped off the opening drive of the second half by walking in with his third touchdown of the game. Somewhere Jeff Tedford's assistant is typing out his résumé.
4:53 Third Quarter; Stanford 45, Cal 0
In my imagination there's a lonely Stanford fan somewhere on the other side of the world depending on this site for updates on Big Game. I'm certain that that isolated alum has long since given up on me, because he doesn't believe that I'm telling him the truth. For those who are still with me, you know it's true. This time it was freshman Anthony Wilkerson who bulled his way in to the end zone. I'm beginning to wonder where this game might end up. Right now the Fox Broadcast is showing the Cal Axe Committee, clinging to the Axe. Enjoy these last few minutes, Cal Bears.
End of Third Quarter; Stanford 45, Cal 0
Former Stanford quarterback and All-Pro NFL linebacker John Lynch is a spokesperson for an avocado company. I'm not sure which is more surprising, the fact that John Lynch is a spokesperson for anything, or that an avocado company has a spokesperson. If I had something insightful to say about the game, I'd say it, but that's about it. Here are a couple of stats:
- First downs: Stanford 24, Cal 12
- Total yards: Stanford 417, Cal 169
14:27 Fourth Quarter; Stanford 45, Cal 7
Apparently figuring it was time to start thinking outside the box, Tedford sends in play that's finally a little interesting. Lining up at the Cardinal 17, quarterback Mansion splits out wide left and running back Keenan Allen lines up in the wild cat. After taking the snap he ran around in the backfield for a bit, narrowly allowing a loss, then fired a strike to Marvin Jones for a touchdown. After the commercial break, the Fox cameras caught a Cal Axe Committee member looking wistfully as the Axe that was chained to his waist. He lovingly caressed the plaque, looking like a lonely man saying good bye to an indifferent lover. Can you say, awkward?
7:04 Fourth Quarter; Stanford 48, Cal 7
Yes, Nate Whitaker hit his second field goal of the day, keeping the Cardinal offense perfect on the day (8 possessions, 6 touchdowns, 2 field goals), but the interesting thing right now is that LSU is losing to Ole Miss, 24-23. An LSU loss -- or maybe even a narrow win coupled with this dominant Cardinal win -- would allow Stanford to jump to #5 in the BCS.
5:58 Fourth Quarter; Stanford 48, Cal 7
I just checked out the traffic stats for this site and noticed a slew of people visiting from Google. Their searches? Different variations of the same question: What is the biggest margin of victory in Big Game history? You just might be looking at it.
5:18 Fourth Quarter; Stanford 48, Cal 7
Cal just turned the ball over on downs, and they might not see it again. With the Cardinal taking over on their own 47 and back-up quarterback Josh Nunes in the game for Luck, you can expect lots and lots of power right and power left. They might as well bring over the Axe right now.
2:11 Fourth Quarter; Stanford 48, Cal 7
Just after the cameras catch the Cal Axe Committee marching the Axe around to the Stanford side of the field, Brock Mansion misses a receiver who was open for a touchdown.
End of Game; Stanford 48, Cal 14
It bothers me a bit that this won't go down as the biggest blowout in Big Game history, but I think it's clear to anyone who watched that it could've been. 48-14 will have to be good enough. The Axe is ours. They just showed the exchange, and it seriously gave me goosebumps. I'll have much more later.