Quarterback Kevin Riley trotted onto the field with 3:16 left in Saturday's game. His team trailed by one point, had the ball on its 19-yard line and needed to march downfield - against a tenacious defense, in front of a hostile crowd, essentially without tailback Jahvid Best - to win. Be honest, Cal fans: Did you really like the Bears' chances?
As Riley later acknowledged, he had faced such a telling, clock-winding-down drive only once in his previous 22 games as a college quarterback. That didn't end so well, when he regrettably tried to scramble during the waning seconds of Cal's 31-28 loss to Oregon State in October 2007.
Saturday's game ended much differently. Riley guided the Bears downfield, Giorgio Tavecchio redeemed himself by kicking a 24-yard field goal with 21 seconds left and Cal danced out of the desert with a 23-21 victory over Arizona State at Sun Devil Stadium.