The newly named Cheez-It Bowl has a history of points coming in bunches, with six of the past seven games producing at least one team scoring 30 points or more.
This year's Cheez-It Bowl might be lucky to have 30 combined points.
California and TCU have two of the nation's best defenses and are among the worst offenses, so points will likely be at a premium Wednesday night at Chase Field, home of baseball's Arizona Diamondbacks.
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"Both play good defense, both offenses are trying to prove at the end of the season that they can do the things we need to do to win ball games," TCU coach Gary Patterson said. "I think that's what makes football a lot of fun. I'll be honest with you, it is a great matchup. Both teams kind of come at you."
Both teams also had to scramble just to get to the desert.
Patterson's Horned Frogs (6-6) had a stretch of five losses in six games, watched one quarterback after another go down with injury and lost by 37 to No. 9 West Virginia.
TCU closed the season with a tight win at Baylor and beat Oklahoma State 31-24 in the regular-season finale to become bowl eligible for the 16th time in 18 seasons under Patterson.
The Horned Frogs are 27th nationally on defense, allowing 344.4 yards per game, but are 91st on offense with 374.6 yards per game.
The Bears (7-5) opened the season with three straight wins to move into the AP rankings at No. 24, but lost three straight games to open Pac-12 play. Cal became bowl eligible in coach Justin Wilcox's second season with consecutive wins over Southern California and Colorado, but lost to rival Stanford 23-13 to close the regular season in a game rescheduled because of wildfires in Northern California.
The Bears are 16th in the FBS on defense, allowing 319.4 yards per game and 110th on offense, averaging 350.2 yards.
"I really want them to appreciate the experience, but also realize one of our goals as a program that we talk about the first day of fall camp is to win a bowl game," Wilcox said. "We need to continue to build off what we've done and go into this game and do whatever we can do to win it."