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Berkeley, Calif. • The injury bug has been gnawing at Utah since the start of the season. But this week, it chomped down hard.

Utah took the field without one of its best defensive players, then saw four others go down during the game — including three of the team's top performers.

Junior tackle Lowell Lotulelei missed his first game ever as a Ute, out with a shoulder injury suffered against USC. The 310-pound, 6-foot-2 tackle had started 30 straight games for the Utes. He was replaced in the lineup by senior tackle Pasoni Tasini.

While losing a projected NFL Draft pick is tough enough for any team, the injuries continued after the game started. On Utah's first offensive series, all-conference senior center J.J. Dielman left the game, headed off the field, and returned later to the sideline in a boot on his right foot. Replacement junior center Lo Falemaka had a bad snap immediately afterward, and then lost a pass rusher leading to a 4th down.

Later in the first quarter, senior receiver Tim Patrick got up after a 22-yard reception hobbling. After trainers checked out and taped his right ankle, he returned to the game, but then exited during Utah's second-quarter touchdown drive and remained on the sideline. Patrick entered the game leading the team in receiving yards and touchdowns, and had 4 catches for 44 yards in the first half. Fellow receiver Kyle Fulks also headed to the locker room in the second half.

Senior corner Reggie Porter pulled up gimpy on a first half drive, and was replaced by freshmen Terrell Burgess and Julian Blackmon. During the second half, he sat on the bench without shoulder pads.

Coach Kyle Whittingham praised his players who stepped up in place of the infirmed.

"The do a great job of continuing to fight and not getting down on themselves," he said."Those guys that picked up the sword, I'm very proud of those guys."

Utah has already suffered two season-ending injuries to defensive end Kylie Fitts and tight end Siale Fakailoatonga. Both are expected to apply for medical hardship waivers to play next season.

Cory Butler-Byrd absent

The Utes were also without one of their top receivers besides Patrick.

Senior receiver Cory Butler-Byrd missed his third game for reasons that were not immediately clear. Utah athletics confirmed that he did not make the trip.

Butler-Byrd spent the first two games of the season serving a suspension after an offseason incident in which he damaged a police car and building. In his two starts prior to Cal, Butler-Byrd had 9 catches for 115 yards.

Final stop

The Utes finally have been everywhere in the Pac-12 as a member of the conference.

When Utah kicked off at California Memorial Stadium on Saturday, it was the last road venue they hadn't played at as a Pac-12 member. When Utah visited Cal in 2011, the game was played at AT&T Park in downtown San Francisco.

The last time Utah played at Cal's home stadium was in 2000, in a 24-21 loss.

Twitter: @kylegoon