The UCLA Bruins have taken some steps forward to prove that their football program is on the rise. With Redshirt Freshman QB Kevin Prince behind center the Bruins opened the season with a 33-14 victory over San Diego State. The following week UCLA went into a very hostile environment and defeated Tennessee 19-15. Not many teams in the country can travel to Neyland Stadium and pull out a victory in front of 102,000 fans. Kevin Prince was lost to an injury and the Bruins didn’t have an emotional letdown as they came back home to defeat Kansas State 23-9. Teams like Kansas (#20), Nebraska (#25) and North Carolina (#22) are ranked in the Top 25 without an impressive win on their schedule. A few more wins should secure a spot for UCLA in the Top 25.
When you think about this football program the names that come to mind are Rick Neuheisel and Norm Chow. The Bruins are not that great of an offensive team right now.
UCLA is the 8th best passing team in the Pac Ten with 167.3 yards per game. There are a lot of young players on that side of the ball. WR Taylor Embree is a Sophomore (7 Catches, 114 Yards). RB Jonathan Franklin is only a Freshman (242 Yards, 2 TD’s). QB Kevin Prince is a Redshirt Freshman and had a QB rating of 105.52 before he got hurt. As the season progresses the offense will start to produce more once the players start to understand their roles in the offense better.
It’s been the defense that has warranted UCLA being among the Top 25 teams in the country after their third game of the season. The Bruins are only giving up 74.3 yards per game and only 2.3 YPC. UCLA has the fourth best-run defense in the Pac Ten. With players like DT Brian Price, DE Korey Bosworth and CB Alterraun Verner leading the defense the Bruins have a chance to beat Stanford and Oregon over the next few weeks and remain undefeated when they play California in the Rose Bowl on October 17th.