Offensive MVP

Marshawn Lynch and Justin Forsett. A true 1-2 punch on the ground worth 2,000 yards of Bear offense in rushing. Lynch has 1,082 yards on 172 carries for seven TDs while Forsett has 989 yards on 124 carries for six touchdowns.

Defensive MVP

Daymeion Hughes and Tim Mixon. These DBs have helped the Bears establish the top pass efficiency defense in the Pac-10 (No. 21 nationally), allowing opponents 54 percent completions and only an average of 6.3 yards per catch.

Team weakness

Injuries to two starting quarterbacks have left the Bears thin at that position, where a former fullback, Steve Levy, will start. Levy has thrown 29 passes and is unproven as a passer, leaving Cal with a one-dimensional look on offense.

Team strength

The tandem run threat of Forsett and Lynch stands out, but so does the consistency of Cal's defense, although it's faced some weak opponents in New Mexico State, Sacramento State and Arizona. The Bears are solid against the run, allowing 121 yards rushing for only 3.3 yards per carry. The Cal pass defense is equally consistent, utilizing a blend of pass rush and tight coverage to hold down opponents.

How they got here

The Bears made the most of the easy part of their schedule with a 5-0 start and a national ranking. They then crashed, beating only Washington State and Stanford in the final six weeks. The Washington State victory elevated the Bears to a six-win team and fifth-place spot in the Pac-10. When the BCS refused to take Oregon, that opened the door for Cal in Las Vegas.

High point

The Bears opened the season well. Victories over Sacramento State, Washington, Illinois, New Mexico State and Arizona vaulted Cal into a tie with USC and Oregon atop the Pac-10. The Bears' offense lit it up for 41 points against Sacramento State, 56 against Washington, 35 against Illinois and 41 against New Mexico State.

Low point

After the 5-0 start, Cal got into close games that turned sour, most notably a 27-20 overtime loss to Oregon. The Bears lost 47-40 to UCLA and 23-20 to Oregon State.

CAL DEPTH CHART

OFFENSE

WR ROBERT JORDAN 11

Lavelle Hawkins 7

LT SCOTT SMITH 52

Aaron Merz 65

LG ERIK ROBERTSON 75

Noris Malele 55

C MARVIN PHILIP 54

Alex Mack 62

RG AARON MERZ 65

Bryan Deemer 66

RT RYAN O'CALLAGHAN 61

Jonathan Murphy 60

TE CRAIG STEVENS 82

Eric Beegun 83

WR DESEAN JACKSON 1

Sam DeSa 86

QB STEVE LEVY 3

Joe Ayoob 18

FB CHRIS MANDERINO 27

Byron Storer 38

TB MARSHAWN LYNCH 10

Justin Forsett 20

DEFENSE

DE PHILIP MBAKOGU 99

Fahim Abd Allah 45

DT ABU MA'AFALA 43

Mika Kane 98

DT BRANDON MEBANE 52

Mika Kane 98

DE NU'U TAFISI 53

Fahim Abd Allah 45

OLB RYAN FOLTZ 26

Mickey Pimentel 8

MLB DESMOND BISHOP 10

Zack Follett 56

OLB ANTHONY FELDER 15

Worrell Williams 1

CB DAYMEION HUGHES 13

Randy Bundy 17

FS HARRISON SMITH 11

Thomas DeCoud 5

ROV DONNIE MCCLESKEY 21

Brandon Hampton 3

CB TIM MIXON 22

Brandon Hampton 3

SPECIAL TEAMS

P DAVID LONIE 14

PK TOM SCHNEIDER 15

PR TIM MIXON 22

DeSean Jackson 1

KOR JUSTIN FORSETT 20

Daymeion Hughes 13