While Brett Hundley’s Heisman hopes got off to a slow start last week and the Bruins dropped from #7 to #11, Linebacker Eric Kendricks was named National Defensive Player of the Week, and UCLA Mascot Joe Bruin remained in the thick of things in the Capital One Mascot Challenge

Even during a week where the Bruins played poorly and dropped four spots in the rankings, there are still some bright spots.  Two individual Bruins are in the National spotlight, as Inside Linebacker Eric Kendricks earned major recognition, and Joe Bruin garnered major votes in the Mascot competition.  Kendricks made 16 tackles during the Week 1 victory over Virginia, 2 of which stopped the Cavaliers from converting on 3rd Downs.  That in itself would be enough, but it wasn’t close to all that he did.  Kendricks also intercepted a pass and returned it 37 yards for a Touchdown, AND forced a fumble that was returned 75 yards for another Touchdown.  This dominating performance earned Kendricks the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week award, the Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week award, and the Bronco Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week award.  Not a bad start for an All-American candidate who was expected to be living in the shadow of Media Darling and fellow Bruin Linebacker Myles Jack all season.  Jack also had a monster game, but Kendricks was even more ubiquitous, making big plays all day, all over the field (as I pointed out the night of the game).

Also making National waves is Joe Bruin.  The long-time UCLA mascot is currently competing in the annual Capital One Mascot Challenge.  You can vote for him multiple times every day, at this website:  I don’t know what the odds are on Joe to win, but these days you can bet on almost anything, and if it is in the sports world, and it can be wagered on, you might find all the info you need right here: — Wesley Snipes said always bet on black.  I say always bet on blue and gold.