BERKELEY -- For its next trick, the Cal football team needs to demonstrate its 43-17 upset of UCLA wasn't merely a tease.
The victory Saturday over the Bruins, then ranked No. 25, won't have real context until the season is complete. Will it be a turning point or just one great night in a dreary season?
The Golden Bears (2-4, 1-2 Pac-12) visit Washington State (2-4, 0-3) on Saturday with the chance to get within one game of .500 overall and pull even in conference play.
A victory in Pullman, Wash., could give Cal significant momentum headed into the earliest-scheduled Big Game in history a week later in Berkeley.
Suddenly, a season that seemed irrevocably lost could have possibilities.
But only if the Bears can do it again.
"It can't be, OK, take a sigh of relief and now we're going to coast for a little bit," coach Jeff Tedford said Sunday. "We've got to feel motivation from it."
Sophomore cornerback Kameron Jackson, who had three interceptions and deflected a pass to create a fourth by teammate Michael Lowe, said the victory creates opportunity if the Bears respond properly.
"We've got to stay humble and keep going hard. We can't settle for this game," he said. "We've got to keep it going."
It's foolish to make too much of one game. As good as they were, the Bears were not perfect: three turnovers, a second straight 100-yard penalty game, two blocked PAT kicks.
"We have to be mature enough and smart enough to understand the focus and attention to detail and the work ethic it takes," Tedford said.
But, for once, the list of positives far outstripped the negatives:
Anderson said the players held a team meeting after the loss to Arizona State a week earlier and agreed not to dwell on what was done.
"I stood up and said, 'Let's start our season over again in the month of October. Focus on every day and every opportunity in October,' " Anderson said. "(Saturday) night it showed. We're 1-0 in the month of October."