Barkley keeps USC’s focus on Cal, not rankings

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Matt Barkley figured one way he could help Southern California bounce back from a disheartening loss at Stanford was with an unusual blast of bravado.

So the quarterback went on Twitter on Thursday and declared: “It’s bear hunting season.”

The 13th-ranked Trojans (2-1, 0-1 Pac-12) look to save their season when they face California (1-2) for the 100th time Saturday.

Another loss will finish the preseason No. 1 team’s national title dreams, and could end USC’s Pac-12 championship hopes as well. The Trojans claim they’re not thinking that way while they prepare to face the Golden Bears, who are coming off their own seven-point loss last week with considerably more optimism.

Cal nearly beat Ohio State on the road, but realizes the Coliseum is every bit as tough.