Cal-Utah Postgame Notes (Poinsettia Bowl at San Diego, CA)
Cal finished the 2009 season with an 8-5 overall record by dropping a bowl game for the first time since 2004 and having its school-record four-game bowl win streak snapped.
Cal did extend its school-record string of bowl appearances (7) and tied a school record with its eighth consecutive winning season in 2009.
Cal is 10-9-1 all-time in bowl games and 5-2 under head coach Jeff Tedford.
Cal has a 4-3 all-time record against Utah, but the Utes have won three of the last four contests in the series. This year's Poinsettia Bowl was the first meeting between the schools in the postseason.
TB Shane Vereen carried 20 times for 122 yards and scored two rushing touchdowns to finish the 2009 season with 952 rushing yards (both team and career highs). He also had a career-high and team-high-tying 12 rushing touchdowns, as well as a career-high 14 total touchdowns, adding two receiving scores.
TB Shane Vereen's final season rushing total of 952 yards ended Cal's string of seasons with a 1,000-yard rusher at seven. The streak was three shy of the all-time FBS record of 10 set by USC from 1972-81.
Year - Player - Rushing Yards
2009 - Shane Vereen - 952
2008 - Jahvid Best - 1,580
2007 - Justin Forsett - 1,546
2006 - Marshawn Lynch - 1,356
2005 - Marshawn Lynch - 1,246
2004 - J.J. Arrington - 2,018
2003 - Adimchinobe Echemandu - 1,195
2002 - Joe Igber - 1,130
TB Shane Vereen became the seventh Cal running back over the last six years to rush for 100 or more yards in a bowl game (listed below). The 100-yard rushing game was the third in the last four contests for Vereen, as well as his fourth of the season and the fifth of his career.
Year - Player - Rushes-Yards-TD - Bowl/Opponent
2009 - Shane Vereen - 20-122, 2 TD - Poinsettia Bowl vs. Utah
2008 - Jahvid Best - 20-186, 2 TD - Emerald Bowl vs. Miami
2007 - Justin Forsett - 23-140, 2 TD - Armed Forces vs. Air Force
2006 - Justin Forsett - 8-124, 1 TD - Holiday vs. Texas A&M
- Marshawn Lynch - 20-111, 2 TD - Holiday vs. Texas A&M
2005 - Marshawn Lynch - 24-194, 3 TD - Las Vegas vs. BYU
2004 - J.J. Arrington - 25-173, 1 TD - Holiday vs. Texas Tech
DB Syd'Quan Thompson extended his school record by making his 52nd consecutive start in his final game at Cal. Thompson started all 52 games possible during his four-year Cal career (2005-08). Thompson also broke the all-time school record for pass breakups when he recorded the 35th and 36th of his career to move past former record holder Chidi Iwuoma (1997-2000).
DL Tyson Alualu started all 39 games possible over his final three seasons and played in all 52 possible during his four-year Cal career (2005-08).
TE Anthony Miller recorded a career-high and team game-high-tying five catches for 55 receiving yards.
DL Kendrick Payne tallied career-highs of three tackles, 2.0 tackles for loss and 1.0 sacks.
DB Sean Cattouse tied his career-high with a team game-high eight tackles.
LB Eddie Young scored the first touchdown of his career when he returned an interception a career-long 31 yards for a score in the first quarter to give Cal an early 14-0 lead. Young is only the second Cal player to return an interception for a touchdown in a bowl game in school history. The other was Jerrott Willard, who returned an interception 61 yards for a touchdown in the 1993 Alamo Bowl vs. Iowa.
LB Mike Mohamed recorded seven tackles to finish the season with 112 stops and continues to be the Pac-10's leading tackler with an average of 8.6 per game.
LB Mychal Kendricks recorded a career-high 3.0 tackles for loss.
WR Isi Sofele made his second career start returned a career-high-tying six kickoffs for 121 yards.
Cal had 16 players - DL Tyson Alualu, DL Kevin Bemoll, LB Devin Bishop, WR Nyan Boateng, OL Mark Boskovich, DB Jesse Brooks, TE Skylar Curran, DB Marcus Ezeff, FB Brian Holley, DB Brett Johnson, TE Tad Smith, OL Chet Teofilo, OL Mike Tepper, DB Syd'Quan Thompson, WR Verran Tucker and LB Eddie Young - complete their collegiate career in the 2009 San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl.
Jeff Tedford's updated coaching record stands at 67-35 (.657).
Jeff Tedford coached the 102nd game of his career at Cal on Wednesday and is now tied with Stub Allison (102, 1935-44) for second place on the school's all-time list, and only one behind Pappy Waldorf for the all-time school record (103, 1947-56).
Cal had six plays of 20 or more yards from the line of scrimmage to finish the 2009 regular season with 72 (48 passing, 24 rushing).
Cal finished the season with 17 turnovers in 13 games in 2009 to set a new school record for the fewest turnovers in a season. The previous all-time low of 18 was recorded on three occasions in 1964, 2002 and '04.
Cal and Utah combined for 38 first-half points to set a new Poinsettia Bowl record.
Cal averaged 40.1 points per game in eight victories in 2009 and 11.4 point per game in five losses.