BERKELEY -- The best-looking play in Cal's spring football game Saturday was a 22-yard run around right end by a big, fast tailback who jogged into the Memorial Stadium end zone untouched.
But as it turned out, the ball carrier wasn't supposed to be touched. He was a ringer -- former Cal star Marshawn Lynch -- who entered the game on a third-down play as a surprise to the approximately 5,000 fans who showed up to get a sneak preview of the Sonny Dykes spread offense.
"We told the guys if anybody tackled him, it was going to be a $25 million fine," Dykes said of Lynch's play. "I didn't want to be getting a call from Pete (Carroll, Lynch's coach with the Seattle Seahawks)."
Lynch apparently approached Cal community relations director Kevin Parker and asked if he could do something at the spring game.
"We kind of brainstormed and figured out a way for him to do something with our team and catch people's attention," Dykes said.
As for the real game -- such as it was -- there were at least a few things that may have grabbed people's attention.
The defense outpointed the offense 28-24 in a bizarre affair that saw just one regulation quarter followed by two more in running time.
With the Bears defense depleted by injury -- 13 of the 22 players who sat out the game were on the defensive side -- Dykes and his staff devised a special scoring system and then decided to end the game early.
"The defensive guys were just huffing and puffing just trying to get through the scrimmage, so that limited what we could do," Dykes said.
The three-headed quarterback competition didn't deliver anything close to an early front-runner.
True freshman Jared Goff, redshirt freshman Zach Kline and junior Austin Hinder each directed one touchdown drive.
Kline got things started early with a 48-yard pass down the right sideline to Maurice Harris, followed three plays later by a nice 15-yard touch pass to Maximo Espitia for a score.
Hinder hit James Grissom on a screen pass midway through the opening quarter, and Grissom did most of the work on a 52-yard scoring play.
Goff's best drive came at the outset of the second quarter, culminated by a quick 6-yard strike to Drake Whitehurst in the left corner of the end zone.
"I didn't see anything today that indicated that somebody stepped ahead," Dykes said.