You’ve Come A Long Way, Baby (but you still have a long way to go) — “#7″ UCLA wins their opener 28-20, but the Offense’s growth has been stunted, and it takes a smoking-hot 3-Touchdown 2nd quarter spurt BY THE DEFENSE to vaporize the Cavaliers
When your Defense scores more points than your Offense, you know you’ve got issues. When they score THREE TIMES AS MANY, your Offensive Coordinator better get to work. The vaunted Bruin Offense and Heisman Hopeful QB Brett Hundley looked anything but explosive on Saturday in Charlottesville, getting shut out until late in the 3rd quarter, managing only 1 TD (a short QB Draw) for the whole game, and being unable to move the chains in crunch time to put the game on ice. The Receivers dropped 5 balls, the Field Goal Kicker missed a 42-yard try, the Running Backs couldn’t break free, and the Offensive Line couldn’t open holes or protect Hundley in the pocket. If not for a flurry of 3 straight TD’s by the Defense in the 2nd quarter, and a Defensive stop highlighted by a Myles Jack coverage play, the Bruins would have gotten upset (or at least taken to OT) by a 21-point underdog, and might have relinquished their spot in the National Rankings’ Top Ten.
The excuse will be that the Bruins are missing their Starting Center Jake Brendel with an injury. Ok, but there was supposed to be enough depth this year to absorb that loss. Apparently, there wasn’t. Hundley was pressured all day by extra rushers, and Starting Bruin Running Back Jordon James gained a total of THREE YARDS on 5 carries. He was replaced by Steven Manfro who promptly dropped two passes. He was replaced by Paul Perkins, who may have earned an ascension up the depth chart by amassing 80 yards on 16 carries. It is possible that the Coaching Staff made adjustments, as there WAS a little more running room later in the game. But when the Bruins had the lead with time running out, they failed to run for the First Downs that would have put the game out of reach.
Despite pressure, Hundley still managed to pass for 242 yards, going 20/33, and don’t forget the 5 drops. But when you consider the Bruins also amassed 12 penalties for 87 yards — more than 4 times more penalty yards than Virginia — Hundley’s numbers were not good enough to put the Cavaliers away. Instead, Continue Reading »