So I along with two other college friends went down to Berkeley for the game. We flew in and stayed in Berkeley at the Hotel Shattuck. For what we got, I thought the place to be a bit expensive, but whatever, it's the Bay Area, I guess. We'd been to Berkeley before about 3, 4 years ago to witness that terrible 59-17 or something like that, so we've already seen Berkeley before. In my opinion, Berkeley is just a gritty, pseudo-hippie type place that seems still has that SF weird vibe going for it. Gotta love the BART system and getting around from Berkeley to pretty much anywhere else you'd want to go in the Oakland/SF area. Anyway, I think I'll break down the trip into different sections for clarity's sake. Since I've already talked about Berkeley itself, I'll move on to fans, then go to the game, and finally the takeaway of the trip. Fans First, I'll talk about Cal's. I've had to deal with UofA and ASU fans. Also gone to games at UCLA. Cal fans are BY FAR the nicest fans I've come across. And that includes Big XII fans. They're quick to remind us of our national championship. I suppose when you know you are pretty intelligent, live in NorCal and have a **** football team, it's not hard to be just very polite and courteous. Even after the game I had Cal fans apologizing to me! Props to all Cal fans that I came across for being (almost too) nice. Now, onto our fans. Honestly, I thought our presence was pretty weak. Prior to the game, we were walking around Berkeley at about 9:30am and we didn't see our first Buffs gear until about 10:30 or so. We actually saw several people wearing Longhorn, Iowa St., and a few other schools before we ever saw any Black and Gold. Alright, I guess we're not morning people, fair enough. As we got closer to game time, more Buffs fans emerged around town. We all know how to have fun, though I was a bit dismayed at fellow Buff fans who didn't know how to play beer pong at the local bar Henry's at all the tables that were set up out there in their courtyard. As for inside the stadium, we had a LOT less support than when CU travelled there back in 2011 or so. I guess that makes sense...we were just coming into the Pac 12 and there hadn't been a lot of west coast games yet. Still, I would've liked to have seen more black and gold in an area of the country where we have a good number of alums. The game Should the band be a part of the section titled "the game"? I guess so. Band was fun, though someone needs to teach them a few things, in my opinion. Mainly, if we have the ball on offense, even your short, 15-20 second songs aren't helping us. We run a no-huddle offense at times, and you guys playing isn't exactly helping Sefo and the gang. That really bothered a few of us, especially late in the 4th quarter. Also, I don't think anyone would mind if all you played were the fight song and the Hey song. Know your bread and butter, guys! Now, as for the game, I think enough people on here have critiqued or praised the game itself. I'll just say that I was pleased with much of what I saw, though I think both CU and Cal are very...inferior teams compared to most other PAC 12 schools. Also, Will Oliver cannot kick from the right hash. My friend made a good point about that and if you go back to the CSU game and now from last weekend, it seems pretty clear that our senior kicker with preseason award accolades cannot kick from the right hash. Oh well. One last thing about the game. I was completely in favor of going for two--not only at the end of regulation but also after we scored in OT. Will Oliver was not going to be trusted during the game, and our defense was proving it could not stop Cal throughout most of the 2nd half. Would anyone have been pissed off we went for the win @ Cal with 1:00 to go in regulation to beat the Bears? Or in OT to just take the win? I sure wouldn't have been. Again, oh well. I thought we played not to lose at the end, and that ended up costing us the game. The final takeaway Ok, so where does that leave us? Should we be happy we played competitively with another Pac 12 foe? Or was this a missed opportunity for the team? While I want to say it's a little bit of both, in my heart I think this was just a missed opportunity. I don't think we'll play another PAC 12 opponent with such bad defense. The schedule will only get harder from here, and when we look back at the end of the year about what might've been, this game will be circled. If Will Oliver connects on a FG or two, or we down muck up that 4th and goal in 2OT, who knows how that would've changed the season's landscape. As for the fans, well I guess the die-hards will remain the die-hards, and the casual fans will continue to thin out. Immediately after the loss, I swore off any more CU games this year. In person or on TV. Sunday morning, though, I had relented and tried to take away some positives from the game. I'll be headed to the USC game. My brain says to expect the worst, and I know I should. However, my heart says that there is at least a .001% chance of an upset occurring. Maybe Spruce goes for 4 TDs and 200 yards, Henderson has a pick-6 and Will Oliver makes a few FGs. Anything can happen, right? Well, for better or worse, that's what a CU fan is reduced to. Knowing full well that we are often in for a pretty bad loss, but holding out the tiniest bit of hope that we can win a PAC 12 away game. And I think most CU fans realize it can always...somehow...be worse. We played Cal competitively and honestly should have won. There were points in the ASU game were it looked like everything was clicking. Maybe we are just a hair away. Maybe, maybe not. At least we're not Michigan right now.