UCLA Bruins Cruise Past Arizona Mildcats, 27-10
The Bruins kept Arizona out of the end zone for the final 55 minutes of the game and didn't turn the ball over at all en route to the win.
The UCLA Bruins easily defeated the Arizona Wildcats, 27-10, tonight at the Rose Bowl.
The Bruins had another rough start due solely to Chip Kelly’s decision to go for it on fourth and one on UCLA’s first drive. That gave Arizona the ball on the Bruin 25 and, four plays later, the Wildcats scored the first touchdown of the game.
The rest of the first half belonged to the Bruins.
UCLA scored 20 points in the remainder of the half on a passing touchdown from Chase Griffin to Brittain Brown, a rushing touchdown by Demetric Felton and a pair of field goals by Nicholas Barr-Mira which sandwiched the TDs.
Each UCLA score went unanswered until there was just 1:15 left in the third quarter. That’s when the Bruin defense stopped Arizona’s longest drive of the game on the UCLA eight-yard line to force the Wildcats to settle for a field goal. That turned out to be Arizona’s last chance to score a touchdown and, yet the Bruin defense denied them those points.
The game was iced when Stephan Blaylock intercepted a Will Plummer pass and returned it 19 yards to the Arizona 30. Five plays later, Brittain Brown scored his second touchdown of the night to give UCLA a 27-10 lead with 1:38 to go.
With the Wildcats in desperation mode, Elijah Gates picked off another Plummer pass on Arizona’s final drive of the game.
In addition to the two interceptions, the Bruin defense finished the night with two sacks, five tackles for loss, four QB hurries, and four pass breakups. They held Plummer to 151 yards passing and, while they gave up 211 yards rushing, 113 of those rushing yards were from Plummer.
Offensively, the Bruins did not turn the ball over once. Griffin was 12 of 20 for 129 yards passing with one touchdown, but the real story offensively is Demetric Felton. Felton carried the ball 32 times for 206 yards on the ground and he had four receptions for 24 yards receiving.
Now, just because Felton had so many touches, don’t think that Brown didn’t do much. He had a very good game in his own right. He carried 16 times for 72 yards and he caught two passes for an additional 26 yards to give him 98 all-purpose yards to go along with his two touchdowns.
Overall, tonight’s game is clearly one of the best games UCLA has played in the Chip Kelly era. Next week, we’ll get to see if they can keep it up when they head to Tempe to face the Arizona State Sun Devils.
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Gotta love U.C.L.A. football winning a game. We aren't good enough or consistent enough to start nitpicking the wins, but that's a blot on the program and not on these kids. I'm happy for their success tonight.
Here comes the nitpicking...
Arizona is going through a really bad patch though so it's hard to make big picture statements from tonight's game. If you take away last week's turnovers, I still think the Bruins played better last week against a better opponent. I was sort of underwhelmed by Griffin's play. He was very safe tonight, but as Dimitri pointed out in the game thread, the Bruins were clearly playing it safe and not really pushing things. And that's fine, and probably smart, against a team like AZ which is really down right now, so it may not be fair to criticize him for that. But if you keep the big picture in mind, tonight's performance may get us to the middle or upper-middle of the Pac-12 South, but it's not getting us to a South title or a look at a Pac-12 title or a top 25 ranking. Mediocre is not the goal.
But in the micro scheme, tonight was a good night. The OL was really good in run blocking (except on 3rd and 4th and short, no thanks to the play calling) and pass pro, Felton is outperforming all expectations, and the Defense is actually pretty solid. They aren't consistently extending a lot of drives with missed tackles or soft cushions or dumb penalties, but then the Standard's offense isn't a real juggernaut either.
We mostly comfortably beat a team we should have comfortably beaten. Job well done. Now let's step it up next week against ASU and keep working towards those bigger goals.
Oh, and who wants to talk QB controversy?? lol
Have a great week, Bruins!
Did I just watch the team play solid from beginning to end? Did that just happen? Was our defense actually good? What in tarnations is going on here? I should be crying in my beer (again) but I actually felt good about this game. Will wonders never cease?