BERKELEY, California — Cyler Miles threw for 273 yards and three touchdowns, Shaq Thompson returned a fumble 100 yards for a score and Washington overwhelmed California 31-7 on Saturday.
The Huskies (5-1, 1-1 Pac-12) forced five fumbles, recovering three of them, and sacked Jared Goff four times to quiet the country's second-highest scoring offense. Washington went ahead 28-0 at the half to bury the Golden Bears (4-2, 2-2) in a hole they could never dig out of.
Miles tossed TDs of 86, 25 and 11 yards. He completed 22 of 29 passes, and the Huskies ran for 111 yards behind Lavon Coleman and Dwayne Washington to spoil Cal's homecoming.
Goff, who had three fumbles, threw for 304 yards. He finished 35-for-51 passing but was limited to mostly short and intermediate throws because of Washington's pressure.
The Huskies totaled 384 yards, while Cal had 368 yards.
The Bears entered the game leading the Pac-12 in scoring and ranked second in the country with an average of 50 points per game. They had scored at least 50 points in their last two games and three times this season, including a wild 60-59 win at Washington State last week.
Cal had started 4-1 for the first time since 2008 and seemed to be turning things around quicker than expected under second-year coach Sonny Dykes after going 1-11 last season. Instead, the Bears showed their rebuilding project still has a long way to go.
Miles moved Washington's offense with relative ease, at times, taking advantaging of a Cal team missing three starters — defensive end Brennan Scarlett (knee) and safeties Stefan McClure (calf) and Michael Lowe (head) — because of injuries and often looking helpless even when it was healthy.
The Huskies, who had a bye last week after losing at home to Stanford, started out slow but capitalized on a big gaff by Goff to tilt the momentum for good.
Goff lost the ball on a quarterback sneak near the goal line, Thompson grabbed the fumble and sprinted the length of the field to give the Huskies a 7-0 lead. It was fourth touchdown this season for Thompson, who originally committed to Cal, and his third fumble taken back for a score.
Miles also connected with DiAndre Campbell on an 11-yard touchdown, and John Ross raced 86 yards for a TD after catching a short pass from Miles to give Washington a 28-0 lead. Ross finished with four catches for 118 yards.
After blocking a field goal by the Huskies early in the third quarter, Lasco's 3-yard run capped an 18-play, 80-yard drive for Cal's lone score.
The Bears stopped Washington, but two fumbles on one play put the ball back in the Huskies' hands at the Cal 16. Cameron Van Winkle kicked a 42-yard field goal to give Washington a 31-7 lead.
About the only bummer on the day for the Huskies came in the final minutes with the outcome already decided.
Perkins was ejected for targeting a defenseless player to wipe away another dazzling run by Ross after a reception. He could be suspended for the first half against Oregon next week if the call is upheld by the conference.
Antonio Gonzalez can be reached at: http://www.twitter.com/agonzalezAP
All content copyright ©2014 Daily Journal, a division of Home News Enterprises unless otherwise noted.