By Arash Markazi, SI.com
There's an old adage in football that if you have two quarterbacks you really have none. You'd think an old quarterback guru like Jeff Tedford would know that, but he had to learn the hard way in the first half of Cal's 38-31 win over Michigan State.
After naming sophomore Kevin Riley -- who had only played in seven quarters of college football -- the starter over senior Nate Longshore -- who has 41 career touchdown passes -- Tedford felt obligated to give Longshore some time after Cal took a 10-0 lead in the second quarter.
Longshore thanked him by throwing two interceptions, one that was returned for a touchdown, which no doubt will earn him a permanent seat on the bench. Riley, who took the snaps the rest of the way, returned and led the Bears to a touchdown on his first series back and finished with 202 yards on 17-of-24 passing for two touchdowns and, more importantly, no interceptions.
The last time most of America saw Riley was last season when he had a brain freeze and got tackled in-bounds as the clock ran out on Cal's chances of being the No. 1 team in the country as they were upset by Oregon State. While the loss sent Cal on a 1-6 nosedive to finish the season, Riley looks like he's fully recovered, which was already evident during last year's Armed Forces Bowl when he entered the game at the start of the second quarter with a 21-point deficit and directed the Bears to a 42-36 win.
On a random side note, what's up with foreign-born kickers who have never played football before getting onto the field today? I feel like I'm watching The Replacements, Necessary Roughness or a similarly bad football movie.
First, Virginia trotted out Yannick Reyering, a native of Mettingen, Germany, who played in his first football game against USC. Reyering was a former UVA soccer star and couldn't even name a single college or pro football team when he came to the United States three years ago but learned the game by playing Madden.
Then a couple days ago Giorgio Tavecchio, a soccer player born in Milan, Italy, walked onto the Cal football team, made the roster by Wednesday and started the season opener against Michigan State as the team's left-footed kick-off specialist.