There’s no better way to prepare for an ultimate showdown than by finding out what the opponent is thinking–or, at least, what the (overrated) brains behind their daily publication are thinking. The Stanfurd Daily published a series of Big Game-themed articles that the Clog is happy to share and rip apart with you, in the name of school spirit, and periodical pride!We’ll start with the Stanfurd Daily’s Big Game Guidelines, in which the Cardinal sets out the rules of football in layman’s terms. (If you are a Cal fan going to the Big Game, read these enlightening tips, and do the exact opposite.)

Other worthwhile terminology to remember: Stanford is on offense when we have the ball and are trying to score, defense when Cal has the ball and we are trying to get it back. A first down is a good thing, going “3-and-out” is a bad thing. It’s bad if your quarterback gets sacked, but good if Cal’s does. If all of this is too hard, just use common sense — if a Stanford student runs a long way or catches the ball, that’s impressive, right? And it’s also a good thing in football.

We appreciate the sarcastic tone of the first portion of the article, before it got all Jonathan Poullard on everyone. The blunt admission of the Stanfurd population’s football stupidity is awesome, and the additional snarky-lite jabs at its own hyper-academic brethren kind of remind us … of us! But let’s not get into mushy comparisons. This is a rivalry.From browsing through the Stanfurd Daily’s detailed explication of the history of bears to bear pun appearances in their headlines, it’s obvious that the Stanfurd Daily is, like, so fascinated by us. The strange, Big Game-themed sex column by Roxy Sass is no exception. “Do Stanford Students Outscore Cal?” Sass asks. No, but Christine Borden out-columns Roxy Sass, giving the Daily Cal a winning point on the arbitrary scoreboard–which we did not reveal until now. Hooray!Daily Cal: 4Stanford Daily: 0In related Big Game news, this time on the Cal front–the Clog recently spotted dear Chancellor Birgeneau on Berkeley’s YouTube channel, trying very adorably to get alumni to care about the imminent axe-battle. He’s already fired up a solid 43 spirited viewers, which is perhaps much more people than the current UC Rally Committee can energize, well, all season (not counting the bonfire, of course).On that note: It is about 2:30 a.m. and the Big Game begins in approximately 13.5 hours in the Stanford Stadium.If you are reading this later in the day, that means 4 p.m.Go Bears!Image Source: Ben Miller, Daily CalBig Game Guidelines [Stanford Daily]Bears That Can’t Be Beaten, Unlike Cal [Stanford Daily]Make Finals Week Bear-able [Stanford Daily]Do Stanford Students Outscore Cal? [Stanford Daily]

Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News recently pulled a Debbie Downer on the Cal-Stanfurd rivalry, saying, “My premise was that on the 25th anniversary of The Play, the Cal-Stanford rivalry is a fading blip on the rivalry radar.” His reasons?

The stakes are rarely high, the games usually aren’t close, and there hasn’t been a major upset in decades.

Without those three elements (stakes, competitiveness, upsets) you have a second-rate rivalry.

Well, while Wilner continues to see scholastic rivalry in purely athletic terms, we Cloggers are busy uniting our people against a good, old-fashioned common enemy. So put on your blue and gold best, in the name of Cal pride! Besides, let’s be honest–at this point in the lovely season, is Big Game spirit really about the football?

Not really. Four-fifths of the Clog staff doesn’t even care for the game. However, our sentiments are mostly in line with one passionate Cal fan’s romantic defense for our beloved rivalry.

Nothing matches Big Game Week on the Cal campus. Blue and gold lights everywhere. Band performances. Night rallies. And of course, the Bonfire Rally at the Greek.

Also, we can’t forget Oski’s showdowns with the Stanfurd tree. Lovable mascots and hardcore school spirit tug at our gentle heartstrings sometimes.

Other times, they just makes us barf–at least when it’s coming from the other side. A recent foray into the long-winded boringness that is The Unofficial Stanfurd Blog turned up a disturbing “Beat Cal” photo contest, whose past participants take their photos in exotic locales like Paris, China and outer space.

Obviously, the tree has a bit of difficulty finding support ’round these parts.

It’s on, Stanfurd. It’s on!

Image Source: Blaire Bailey, Daily Cal
Cal and Stanford football: Is Big Game becoming irrelevant? San Jose Mercury News