Dec 22, 2020; Boise, Idaho, USA; Nevada Wolf Pack quarterback Carson Strong (12) throws a pass  during the first half of the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl versus the Tulane Green Wave  at Albertsons Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Losness-USA TODAY Sports

News Articles

Heisman hopeful Carson Strong leads Nevada against Cal

The Carson Strong Heisman Watch kicks off Saturday night when Nevada visits California in a nonconference season opener at Berkeley, Calif.

Strong, the reigning Mountain West Conference Offensive Player of the Year, enters his junior year riding the hype of having already been named to several publications’ Maxwell Award watch lists.

He threw for 2,858 yards and 27 touchdowns last season, his first year as the Wolf Pack’s full-time starter, putting himself on the 2021 Heisman map with a 271-yard, five-touchdown finale against Tulane in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise.

Strong, who missed his senior season at Will C. Wood High in Vacaville, Calif., because of a knee injury, prompting local schools like Cal to focus their recruiting elsewhere, is focused on team goals rather than individual glory.

“Winning is the only thing that matters,” said Strong, his team coming off a 7-2 season. “At the end of the day, you have to go out there and win. That’s the only thing I’m worried about. I just want to go out there and win a championship for Nevada and play in a New Year’s Six bowl.”

He could be facing one of his toughest assignments of the season right off the bat against a Cal defense that figures to be tough against the pass.

The Golden Bears are strong both on the defensive perimeter with outside linebackers Cameron Goode and Kuony Deng and in the secondary with safety Elijah Hicks and cornerback Josh Drayden.

Cal allowed just 197.8 passing yards per game during its abbreviated 1-3 campaign last year, limiting Stanford’s Davis Mills and Oregon’s Tyler Shough to one touchdown apiece in the last two games.

Cal will counter Strong with an awards candidate of its own. Senior Chase Garbers is a veteran of 23 college starts, during which the Golden Bears have gone 14-9. The 14 wins as a starter are tops among all returning Pac-12 quarterbacks.

The 225-pounder also is a capable runner as well as a passer, having accumulated 718 rushing yards in his career, just 213 shy of Joe Kapp’s all-time school record among quarterbacks.

Cal offers good depth in its running game, with Christopher Brooks, who ran for 914 yards in 2019, and Damien Moore, who rolled up 121 yards against Stanford last season, splitting opportunities.

Bears coach Justin Wilcox offered no apologies for winding up with Garbers rather than Strong as his starting quarterback.

“Things happen in recruiting,” he said. “(Strong) has had a heck of a career. We know he’s going to be a great challenge for our defense.”

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.

Sportsbooks

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Upcoming Games

Oct 28th, 7:30 PM

Troy +18 -107

Coastal Carolina (14) -18 -107

@

Oct 28th, 7:30 PM

USF +7.5 -107

East Carolina -7.5 -107

@

Oct 29th, 7:30 PM

Navy +9.5 -107

Tulsa -9.5 -107

@

Oct 29th, 10:00 PM

UNLV +20 -107

Nevada -20 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Virginia Tech +3.5 -107

Georgia Tech -3.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Texas State +20 -107

Louisiana-Lafayette -20 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Bowling Green +13.5 -107

Buffalo -13.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Massachusetts +35.5 -107

Liberty -35.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Miami-FL +12.5 -107

Pittsburgh (23) -12.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Texas +3 -110

Baylor (20) -3 -110

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Cincinnati (2) -25.5 -110

Tulane +25.5 -110

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Rutgers -1 -107

Illinois +1 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

UCF -11.5 -107

Temple +11.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Indiana +2.5 -107

Maryland -2.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Michigan (6) -3 -110

Michigan State (9) +3 -110

@

Oct 30th, 12:00 PM

Iowa (11) +2.5 -107

Wisconsin -2.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 2:00 PM

North Texas +1.5 -107

Rice -1.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 2:00 PM

Iowa State -7.5 -107

West Virginia +7.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:00 PM

Missouri -16.5 -107

Vanderbilt +16.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:00 PM

Washington State +14.5 -107

Arizona State -14.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:00 PM

Hawaii +7.5 -107

Utah State -7.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Georgia (1) -13 -107

Florida +13 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Florida State +10.5 -107

Clemson -10.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Colorado +26.5 -107

Oregon (10) -26.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Texas Tech +20 -110

Oklahoma (3) -20 -110

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Florida International (FIU) +22.5 -107

Marshall -22.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Southern Miss +16.5 -107

Middle Tennessee -16.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

LA Tech -4.5 -107

Old Dominion +4.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

TCU +3.5 -110

Kansas State -3.5 -110

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Boston College +4 -107

Syracuse -4 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Purdue (25) +5.5 -107

Nebraska -5.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Minnesota -7 -107

Northwestern +7 -107

@

Oct 30th, 3:30 PM

Louisiana-Monroe +24.5 -110

Appalachian State -24.5 -110

@

Oct 30th, 4:00 PM

Charlotte +19.5 -107

WKU -19.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 4:00 PM

Wyoming +3.5 -107

San Jose State -3.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 4:00 PM

Duke +15.5 -107

Wake Forest (16) -15.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 5:00 PM

Arkansas State +10 -107

South Alabama -10 -107

@

Oct 30th, 6:00 PM

UTEP +13.5 -107

Florida Atlantic -13.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 6:00 PM

Georgia State -5 -107

Georgia Southern +5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Ole Miss (12) +1 -110

Auburn (19) -1 -110

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Oregon State -1.5 -107

California +1.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Kentucky (15) -1 -110

Mississippi State +1 -110

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Kansas +30.5 -107

Oklahoma State (8) -30.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Arizona +20.5 -107

USC -20.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

SMU (21) +3 -107

Houston -3 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:00 PM

Boise State -3 -112

Colorado State +3 -112

@

Oct 30th, 7:30 PM

Louisville +7 -107

NC State (18) -7 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:30 PM

North Carolina +6 -107

Notre Dame (13) -6 -107

@

Oct 30th, 7:30 PM

Penn State (7) +12.5 -107

Ohio State (5) -12.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 10:00 PM

UCLA +3 -110

Utah -3 -110

@

Oct 30th, 10:15 PM

Virginia +1.5 -107

BYU -1.5 -107

@

Oct 30th, 10:30 PM

Washington +2 -107

Stanford -2 -107

@

Oct 30th, 10:30 PM

Fresno State +1.5 -107

San Diego State (22) -1.5 -107

@

Nov 2nd, 3:33 PM

Miami-OH

Ohio

@

Nov 2nd, 3:33 PM

Ball State

Akron

@

Nov 2nd, 3:33 PM

Eastern Michigan

Toledo

@

Nov 3rd, 7:00 PM

NIU

Kent State

@

Nov 3rd, 7:00 PM

Central Michigan

Western Michigan

@

Nov 4th, 7:30 PM

Georgia State

Louisiana-Lafayette

@