Raiders get “Punched in the Face”, blown out by Falcons, 43-6

Atlanta Falcons defensive back Darqueze Dennard #34 breaks up a pass intended for Las Vegas tight end Darren Waller #83 during the first quarter against the Las Vegas Raiders on November 29, 2020. (Photo: Atlanta Falcons)

By Shawn McCullough

“We got punched in the face,” said Raiders quarterback Derek Carr.

Coming off a narrow defeat to the Chiefs last week, the Raiders didn’t show up in Atlanta in a 43-6 drubbing to the Falcons.

“Our fans deserve better than what we did today,” said Carr. “Our organization deserves better than what we put out there today.  That was a bunch of trash.”

The Raiders turned the ball over five times including four fumbles and a 67 yard interception for a touchdown.  In addition, Las Vegas was penalized 11 times for 141 yards.

“When you turn the ball over 5 times and have 141 yards of penalties, you have no chance,” said head coach Jon Gruden.

The Raiders were flat the entire game and Carr felt that coming throughout the week.

“I didn’t think that we had our best week of practice,” said Carr. “Anytime that you turn the ball over like that, you’re not going to win football games.”

Carr went 22 for 34 for 215 yards, zero touchdowns and one interception.

“It’s a gut punch for sure,” said Carr.

The Raiders only points came off the foot of kicker Daniel Carlson, who booted a 29 yard field goal in the 2nd quarter and a 24 yarder in the 3rd.

Running back Josh Jacobs was held to just seven carries for 27 yards, while hunter Renfrow led the Raiders catching seven balls for 73 yards.

With the loss, the Raiders fell to 6-5 on the season.

“We do a really good job of washing stuff away, win or lose,” said Carr about the loss.

The Raiders will next travel to New Jersey to face the New York Jets on Sunday.

Game Notes:

  • The Raiders were outgained by the Falcons in total yards, 304-243.
  • Las Vegas had only 13 first downs in the game.
  • The Raiders have now lost two straight games.

NCAA Football podcast with Michelle Richardson: Fuller becomes first woman to play in Power Five College Football; Iowa shocks Texas; Notre Dame stays undefeated

Vanderbilt’s Sarah Fuller became the first woman to play in the Power Five College game as she kicked off on Sat Nov 28, 2020 (@SEC image)

On the NCAA Football podcast with Michelle:

#1 Sarah Fuller became the first woman to play in the Power Five college football game. Fuller a place kicker for Vanderbilt (0-8)  joined the team after the teams kickers had tested for Covid-19 and were placed into quarantine. Vanderbilt also fired head coach Derek Mason on Sunday after seven seasons.

#2 After the Texas Longhorns (5-3) had won three straight they lost to Iowa (7-2) Saturday 23-20. There has been rumblings about Texas head coach Tom Herman that his job might be on shaky ground.

#3 Notre Dame (9-0) had an outing against North Carolina (6-3) in a 31-17 win. Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book threw for 279 yards and one touchdown. The Fighting Irish continue to be undefeated.

Michelle’s Final thoughts.

Join Michelle Sundays for the NCAA Football podcasts at

Headline Sports podcast with Daniel Dullum and Ana Kieu: Santa Clara now bans sports for three weeks; Coronavirus is out of control in the NFL; plus more

Baltimore Ravens quarterback LaMar Jackson (8) passes against the Tennessee Titans in the first half on Sun Nov 22, 2020 (AP News photo)

Headline Sports podcast with Daniel Dullum:

1 Santa Clara County bans all contact sports for 3 weeks due to COVID-19

2 Ravens place six more players on COVID-19 list, will still play Pittsburgh on Tuesday; all 4 Broncos QB’s test positive; Cardinals legend Larry Fitzgerald tests positive

3 Lions fire head coach and GM after Thanksgiving embarrassment

4 NBA cancels this season’s All-Star Game due to COVID-19

5 Warriors gained $9.3 million salary exemption for injured Klay Thompson

6 Vanderbilt kicker Sarah Fuller becomes first woman to play for a Power 5 football team

Join Daniel for Headline Sports podcasts each Sunday at

Las Vegas Raiders podcast with Rich Perez: Raiders face a struggling Falcons team this Sunday

Atlanta Falcons head coach Raheem Morris has won three out of the last six games since taking over a 0-4 Falcons team as head coach. The Raiders face the Falcons at the Georgia Dome Sunday Nov 29th (CBS TV file photo)

On the Raiders podcast with Rich:

#1 Rich it was a close game against the Kansas Chiefs but the last 28 seconds of the game with the Raiders leading 31-28 the Chiefs quarterback Pat Mahomes threw a 22 yarder to Travis Kelce in an offensive play that took seven plays to execute for the win 35-31.

#2 Rich for head coach Jon Gruden he put together a master playbook against the Chiefs and nearly knocked them off a second time for this season how disappointing was it for Gruden to losing like that in the closing 28 seconds.

#3 Rich talk about the Raiders first half of that game they jumped to a 14-7 lead in the first quarter and had a 20-14 lead at the half all indications look good.

#4 The Raiders quarterback Derek Carr really had himself an evening last Sunday against the Chiefs defense throwing for 275 yards, three touchdowns and interception remarkable when you considering throwing against one of the best teams in the NFL.

#5 The Raiders are 6-3 have won three of their last four games are in Atlanta on Sunday to face the Falcons (3-6) Atlanta head coach Raheem Morris who took over the Falcons when they were 0-4 and got them in the win column winning three of their last six games. How do you see this match up this Sunday?

Join Rich for the Raiders podcasts each Saturday night at

San Francisco 49ers podcast with Jeremiah Salmonson: Santa Clara County shuts down Levis stadium for next two home games; 49ers players in question for Sunday in LA

San Francisco 49ers running back Jerrick McKinnon said he was not surprised by the lack of players in practice this week due to Covid and injury issues (file photo from San Francisco Chronicle)

On the 49ers podcast with Jeremiah:

#1 The 49ers return from their bye week to a inflating Covid list making some thinking if playing a contact game call NFL football during a pandemic was the wise choice at all. But either way the 49ers are preparing for their meeting with the Los Angeles Rams for Sunday.

#2 49ers running back Jerrick McKinnon during the week of practice said “that’s the 2020 season for you” regarding the fewer players available and on the Covid list not to mention San Francisco’s other list the Injured List.

#3 Lets take a look at the Covid list Jeremiah and please talk about the players who the 49ers will miss this weekend in LA, left tackle Trent Williams, wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk, defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw, nose tackle DJ Jones, defensive end Jordan Willis, linebacker Joe Walker, tight end Daniel Helm who is on the 49ers practice squad.

#4 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said that it a probability that a number of those players could get into the game in LA on Sunday. How safe would a negative test give relief and confidence that it’s safe to be playing against or with someone who just got off the Covid list?

#5 The Rams are 7-3 first in the NFC West and are coming off a big win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the 49ers come into Sunday’s game after suffering three straight losses the game is in LA set this one up for us.

Join Jeremiah each Saturday night for the 49ers podcast at


Blocked extra point leaves Cal winless, and without the Axe

By Morris Phillips

How could a blocked extra point be so costly?

For star-crossed Cal, it was just that: no overtime, no win over Stanford, no Axe and likely no postseason.

With under four-and-a-half minutes remaining, the Bears moved smartly and quickly down field culminating with Christopher Brown Jr.’s 3-yard touchdown to pull the Bears within 24-23 pending the extra point. But with 58 seconds remaining, Dario Longhetto’s kick was blocked, leaving Cal agonizingly short.

“We had multiple opportunities to win the game but we didn’t get it done,” coach Justin Wilcox said. “We can’t sit around feeling sorry for ourselves. We have to own it, starting with me. We have to coach better and individually have to own up to what we didn’t do well enough to win the game.”

Wilcox hinted at other problems, not just the blocked kick. There were several–a muffed punt, a blocked field goal attempt before the half, and two critical deficits, 17-10 and 24-17 with time running short–leading the Bears to a tough loss without any wins.

The Bears got another gritty effort from Chase Garbers, and a 121-yard rushing effort from true freshman Damien Moore. But missing three starters on the offensive line prevented the Bears from seizing momentum and keeping it. No consecutive scores and miscues kept the Bears locked in a close game.

Stanford–absent of the edge in physicality that propelled them to eight, consecutive wins in the series prior to last season–simply followed Cal’s miscues with opportunism.

Stanford Cardinal post game report: Stanford wins a thriller as they defeat the California Bears 24-23

Stanford’s Thomas Booker got an elbow on Cal kicker Dario Longhetto’s extra point attempt in the fourth quarter which was a crucial point attempt that ended up with Cal losing by one point at Memorial Stadium in Berkeley on Fri Nov 27, 2020 (photo from

By Daniel Dullum

Stanford met the University of California for the 123rd time on Friday. The game was played at Memorial Stadium on the Cal campus with no fans in the seats. It didn’t matter as this was the Big Game. The storied rivalry between the two teams has captivated their fans for years.

Neither team had won a game this season. Each team had a game canceled due to Covid-19. The excitement was still palpable. The Bears won control of the Axe when they beat Stanford 24-20 last year. Stanford’s coach, David Shaw, improved to 9-1 against the Bears. Cal’s coach, Justin Wilcox, is now 1-3 against the Cardinal.

The game was, without question, one that either team could have won. The Bears had opportunities to win the game. They didn’t, as they made five critical mistakes that allowed Stanford to win 24-23.

The Cardinal blocked a Bear field goal attempt at the end of the first half that would have put the Bears ahead 13-10. They failed to make a fair catch. The fumble led to a Stanford score. Another fumble allowed Stanford to score their second touchdown of the game.

The Bears defense was called for a holding penalty. Stanford took advantage and put seven points on the board. The final mistake came late in the fourth quarter. The Bears started a game-tying drive from their ten-yard line. Led by quarterback Chase Grabers, the Bears marched down the field.

One of the key plays was Damian Moore’s 27-yard scamper. Grabers connected with Clark to get the ball down to Stanford’s 18-yard line. Cal running back Christopher Brown blasted through the Stanford line to get the ball inside the five-yard line. Two more plays moved the ball to the three. Brown scored to make in 24-23. Stanford then blocked the try for the extra point to destroy Cal’s hopes to tie the game and possibly win it in overtime.

In the first half, Cal’s offense scored the first touchdown of the game when Chase Grabers connected with Kekoa Crawford for the score. Cal’s defense played well in the first quarter keeping Stanford off the board.

The Bears led 7-0 after the first fifteen minutes of play. The Cardinal’s Jet Toner kicked a field goal to start the second period to make it 7-3. The Bears regained the seven-point advantage when Grabers made two great runs to get the ball into the red zone. The Bear drive stalled at the 7-yard line. Cal kicker David Longhetto made the field goal to put the Bears ahead 10-3.

Things started going south for the Bears when Remigio muffed the punt. Stanford recovered on the Bears 16-yard line. Davis Mills connected with Mike Wilson to tie the game 10-10 with 2:09 left in the first half.

The Bears mounted a drive that got them to the Cardinal 15-yard line with just eight seconds left. Stanford was guilty of pass interference on the play. Grabers pass into the end zone was incomplete. Stanford blocked the Bear’s field goal try. The half ended tied 10-10.

Davis Mills was 13 for 17, good for 104 yards and one touchdown. Austin Jones had five carries for just twelve yards. Mike Wilson caught five passes for 55 yards and one touchdown. Chase Grabers was 12 for 15 for 98 yards and a touchdown. He led the Bears in rushing with five carries for 32 yards.

Stanford took the lead for the first time in the third quarter. The Bears fumble, recovered by Stanford on Cal’s 40-yard line, allowed Stanford to put more points on the board. Mills’ pass to Wilson took Stanford inside the ten-yard line.

Jones took the ball to the three and then to the house to give Stanford a 17-10 lead. Cal stormed back to tie the game. Running back Damien Moore ripped off a 54-yard run. Grabers connected with Nikko Remigio for the score to tie the game 17-17.

Mills was taking the Cardinal downfield once again. It looked like the Bears had stopped the Cardinal drive when the Cal defense intercepted Mills’ pass. The referees called a holding penalty, and Stanford retained control of the ball. The Cardinal took the ball down to the Bears’ eight-yard line. Austin Jones rammed his way into the end zone for the tally. 24-17 Stanford advantage.

The Bears started the tying drive on their ten-yard line. They marched down the field for the score. With 62 seconds left in the game, Christopher Brown scored. All Cal had to do was make the extra point, and the game would be tied.

Cal coach Justin Wilcox had an option. He could have asked his team to go for a two-point conversion. If Cal made it, they would have won. Wilcox went for the safer option. Make the extra point, and Cal will take its chances in overtime. Stanford’s defense rose to the occasion and blocked the kick. Stanford won and reclaimed the Axe.

Game stats- Davis Mills was 24 for 32, good for 205 yards and one TD. Grabers was 19 for 29 for 151 yards and two TDs. Austin Jones had 18 carries for 72 yards and two TDs/ Cal’s Damien Moore rushed ten times for 121 yards. Mike Wilson had seven catches for 88 yards and one TD. Kekoa Crawford had five receptions for 52 yards and one TD.

Team stats:
Total Yards- Stanford 289- Cal 392
Time of possession-Stanford 33:15- Cal 22:17
Turnovers- Stanford 0- Cal two
First downs-Stanford 15-Cal 20
Penalties-Cal six for 75 yards- Stanford on for 10 yards.

Stanford goes to Seattle to play the Washington Huskies on December 5th. Cal hosts the University of Oregon.


Cal Bears podcast with Michael Duca: Big Game commences after season of cancelation and loses for both teams

On the very offensive first play of the game between the Cal Bears and Oregon State Beavers running back Jemar Jefferson (6) carried for 75 yards for the opening score on Sat Nov 21st, 2020. Cal is trying to avoid such an offensive volley like this as they kick off with the Stanford Cardinal in the Big Game Fri Nov 27, 2020 at Memorial Stadium (AP News photo)

Cal Bears podcast with Michael Duca:

#1 The Big Game has arrived an event that everyone is counting on regardless where either Stanford (0-2) or Cal (0-2) is in the standings both schools look forward to the battle for the ax.

#2 Taking a look at visiting Stanford first, quarterback Davis Mills threw for 327 yards and carried for a touchdown. In spite of a great day of throwing the Cardinal offense couldn’t execute against the Colorado Buffaloes defense scoring in single digits in each of the first three quarters in a 35-32 loss.

#3 The Cal Bears quarterback Chase Garbers threw a game that was good enough to win against the Oregon State Beavers (1-2) in the Bears last game. Garbers with 315 yards passing and three touchdowns but Cal came up short 31-27.

#4 Michael, both teams have lost both of their games and have two games canceled due to Covid-19 for this Big Game today how much of their timing do you expect to be off after two weeks worth of downtime?

#5 It’s the Big Game today at Cal you’ve attended a few Big Games in your career and while it’s a great thing to be their working a game like this behind the scenes you can get a great sense how important it is for both of these schools to battle hard for that ax.

Michael Duca does the Cal Bears podcasts each Friday at


San Francisco 49ers podcast with Joe Hawkes: Sherman still being evaluated for return; Mostert and Wilson also trying to return this Sunday in LA

San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman is still be observed for his calf injury as to if he could return this Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams. 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said if he’s feeling 100% they’ll get him out there ( file photo)

On the 49ers podcast with J Hawkes:

#1 San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said that again he’s using caution regarding any return of cornerback Richard Sherman from his calf injury.

#2 Shanahan did say Sherman could make a return the team was looking at him in practice this past week and he is still under evaluation as to whether he can return or not.

#3 The 49ers are also concerned about running backs Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson who are both suffering from ankle injuries. Coach Shanahan said they are both under evaluation whether they can get in the lineup or not against the Los Angeles Rams.

#4 The 49ers have limited practice for wide receiver Deebo Samuel (hamstring) and Tevin Coleman (knee) both were in practice this week but their work had limitations according to Shanahan.

#5 K’Waun Williams the 49ers cornerback said he was shocked when he tested positive for performance enhancers an NFL violation that got him a two game suspension. The NFL had rescinded the suspension saying there were questions about the testing procedures. Williams is currently out of the line up with a high ankle injury. Coach Shanahan said Williams won’t return for another two weeks.

#6 The 49ers who are on a three game loss streak are in Los Angeles on Sunday and beat the Rams the last time the two teams met at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara on Oct 18th 24-16 will face a first place Rams team who are 7-3 and are coming off a big win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 27-24 on Monday Night Football.

Join J Hawkes for the 49ers podcasts each Friday morning at

Cal basketball in the win column with blowout of Northwest WA, 86-61

The Cal Bears Ryan Betley (00) led all scorers on Thanksgiving night at Northwest University at Gill Coliseum with 14 points in the Bears first win of the 2020-21 season (KLC Photos)

By Morris Phillips

It’s not the distinction the Cal athletic department was looking for but hey, it’s 2020 and just about anything goes.

The Cal men’s basketball team has a win at least a day before the Cal football team gets its initial win. Call it calendar confusion or a COVID cancelations conundrum, the Bears hoopers have their first win, 86-61 over Northwest (WA) a day before the Cal football team (0-2) faces Stanford in the Big Game.

Normally, the overlap between college football and college basketball is brief, but nothing is normal this season. In fact, it wasn’t until midway through this week that the Bears found out they would be playing on Thanksgiving day.

But once the novelty of it all played out the Bears got down to business, decimating the NAIA Eagles with a 27-4 run early in the first half on their way to a 20-point halftime lead and a 25-point win.

Five Golden Bears scored in double figures led by Ryan Betley with 14 points, nine rebounds. Andre Kelly an Matt Bradley each scored 11 points, Makale Foreman and Joel Brown each had 10.

Mark Fox jumbled his lineup, inserting Foreman, Kuany Kuany and D.J. Thorpe as starters after the team started sluggishly on Wednesday versus OSU. Fox took advantage of the big lead by getting playing time for his entire roster with Logan Alters, Blake Welle and Jalen Celestine making their season debuts.

The two schools were originally scheduled for Friday afternoon but the late scratch of the Colorado State Rams due to COVID issues forced the teams to move up 24 hours to accommodate a newly scheduled Northwest (WA)-Oregon State matchup on Friday.

The Bears return to the Bay Area early in anticipation of their home opener against Nicholls of the Southland Conference on Monday night.