EUGENE, Ore. — The Bear Raid is coming to Autzen.
New California coach Sonny Dykes and his re-tooled Golden Bears visit No. 2 Oregon with both teams coming off byes, giving them plenty of time to ponder what they might see Saturday night in the conference opener for both teams.
For Oregon, it will be Dykes' pass-happy offense led by freshman quarterback Jared Goff, who is making his first start on the road. He leads the nation and the Pac-12 with an average of 435.3 yards passing. He's completed 61.3 percent of his passes in three games.
But he'll be up against an Oregon defense that has allowed opponents an average of just 9 points per game, tying the Ducks for fifth nationally. The team has allowed an average of 189.3 yards passing per game, but only one touchdown reception.
Another issue for the Golden Bears? The forecast calls for heavy rain at kickoff, which may impact their passing game. The remnants of a typhoon are expected to bring rain, gusty wind and perhaps even minor flooding to the region.
While Dykes' offense is known for its quickness — the Bears have run at least 90 offensive plays from scrimmage in each of their three games — Oregon's defense has been tested by its own offense, which ranks last among FBS teams in time of possession (22:18).
“Hopefully, it's just built into our guys. We've seen guys snap the ball fast before. It's not going to make our guys instantly uncomfortable. Hopefully, that's not something that throws us off too much,” coach Mark Helfrich said.
As for Cal, they'll see Oregon's quick-strike, high-scoring spread offense led by early Heisman Trophy contender Marcus Mariota, who has thrown for 889 yards and seven touchdowns, and run for 262 yards and four more scores over his first three games.
Mariota hasn't thrown an interception yet this season.
The undefeated Ducks rank among the top five teams nationally in scoring offense, with an average of 61.3 points, rushing offense with 355.3 yards and total offense with 672 yards per game.