FROM BERKELEY -- After Washington's fourth touchdown of the first half, California's student section sent up the traditional "I believe that we will win" chant that has become so prevalent at college sporting events.
If they truly do believe, they might be the only ones.
There are still a full two quarters to play, but the Huskies have thoroughly dominated California through the game's first 30 minutes, using a 100-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Shaq Thompson and an 86-yard throw-and-catch from Cyler Miles to John Ross -- plus a pair of more conventional scores in between -- to claim a 28-0 halftime lead over a California team that scored 164 points in its last three games.
Cal's offense was rolling early, and the Bears appeared ready to score the game's first touchdown on a 2nd-and-goal from inside UW's 1-yard line. But quarterback Jared Goff lost the ball when he tried to extend it across the goal line, Thompson recovered it in the end zone, then ran 100 yards up the right sideline to give UW a 7-0 lead.
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One play after Cal fumbled again at UW's 25-yard line, Miles hit Josh Perkins for a 25-yard touchdown pass. A 14-play, 88-yard drive capped by an 11-yard touchdown pass from Miles to DiAndre Campbell made it 21-0. Then Miles hit Ross on a short inside screen, Ross broke one tackle and ran past everyone on his way to UW's fourth touchdown of the half.
The Huskies have a pretty surprising edge in total offense (272-180) and yards per play (7.6 to 4.3). And, of course, the turnover margin has been enormous once again.
UW will receive the opening kickoff of the second half.