I always wondered why this “rivalry” seemed so toned down. For the last 8 years, it seems as they have come 3rd and 4th fiddle when it comes to hostility from Cal fans. I know Oregon took off after they got good and we fought with them to be USC’s bride’s maid in the late 2000s. Then of course there is up trying to shoot the moon and get over the USC hump. Now there’s the Washington issue after they ended our bowl streak and started To$hgate. Then there’s also the big game and natural Bay Area matchup with Leroy Junior College. I know potentially see them as our “little brother” but academically and population wise they are probably closer to us than most flagship universities and their satellite colleges. (Props to our UC system here).
UCLA though just felt like a more natural rivalry to me though than Stanford. We both are public schools and share the same colors (sort of) and Sons of Westwood is a rip off of our fight song. Academically, we are closer to their rankings in the nation’s eyes than the Stanford (based off the East Coast biased US News rankings at least). Of course Bruin fans have this to lean on but I sort of believed that had more to do with popularity and the fact more people see UCLA as being “attainable” than Cal. We can probably say the one thing UCLA and Berkeley students have in common was we got into UCLA. That’s a Stanford joke by the way on us. On the field, we’ve gone back and forth in home games since 1998 (outside of 2009). I understand they have 100+ college championships while we’re still somewhere between 20 and 30 so we have a ton of catchup to do there.
Overall, I would like to see more spice in this rivalry. Worse comes to worse though, we can both probably agree to hate on schools in red.