This Week In UCLA Football
Oct. 4, 2004
KEY DATES TO REMEMBER --
Mon., Oct. 4 - Coach Dorrell Media Briefing (1:30 p.m.)
Tue., Oct. 5 - Coach Dorrell on Pac-10 Teleconference (10:30 a.m.); Last day to interview Bruin quarterbacks
Wed., Oct. 6 - Last day to interview UCLA players
Sat. Oct. 9 - UCLA vs. Arizona on Fox Sports (3:30 p.m. PDT).
GAME 5 -- UCLA welcomes Arizona to the Rose Bowl for its Pac-10 home opener. The Bruins are 3-1 overall and 1-0 in Pac-10 play. The Wildcats are coming off a bye week and own a 1-3 overall mark and 0-1 record in the Pac-10.
XTRA Sports 690/1150 and the Bruin Radio Network broadcasts all of the Bruin games with Chris Roberts and Matt Stevens in the booth. Wayne Cook will work the sidelines. The game can also be heard nationally on Sirius Satellite Radio.
Fox Sports Net will televise the game nationally with Barry Tompkins and Petros Papadakis in the booth.
HONORARY CAPTAIN -- Linebacker Jerry Robinson became the nation's first three-time consensus All-American since SMU's Doak Walker (1947-49) when he was honored following the 1976, 1977 and 1978 seasons. He ranks first on the UCLA career tackle list with 468 stops and first on the single-season tackle list with 161. Robinson finished 10th in the 1978 Heisman Trophy voting. He was inducted into the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame in 1991 and into the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in 1996. Jerry was a first-round draft choice of the Philadelphia Eagles in 1979 and went on to enjoy a 13-year NFL career.
AT THE GAME -- UCLA will introduce its 2004 Hall of Fame Class at the game during halftime. Football stars Dennis Dummit (1969-70), Carlton Gray (1989-92) and James Owens (1975-78) will head a class of eight inductees. Also in the class are Henry Bibby-basketball, Steve Lewis-track, Sigi Schmid-soccer, Fred Slaughter-basketball and Natalie Williams-volleyball / basketball.In addition, the two-time defending NCAA champion women's gymnastics team will be introduced between the first and second quarters.The first 10,000 fans in attendance will receive True Blue Fan Towels.
DID YOU KNOW? --
Maurice Drew leads the nation in all-purpose yards (229.5) and ranks fourth in the country in rushing (167.25). He leads the Pac-10 in both categories.
Maurice Drew rushed for 322 yards and five touchdowns at Washington on Sept. 18, setting UCLA records in both categories. Only two players in Pac-10 history (Reuben Mayes of Washington State and Ricky Bell of USC) ever rushed for more yards in a single game.
Maurice Drew is averaging 46.14 yards on each of his seven rushing touchdowns this season (47, 47, 62, 58, 15, 37, 57 for 323 yards).
Craig Bragg has moved into second on UCLA's career reception list with 169. He needs just 11 to move to the top of the list. He has scored 20 career touchdowns and 11 have measured at least 40 yards. Already the only player to record two seasons of at least 50 receptions, Bragg will become the first Bruin ever to record three straight 1,000-plus all-purpose yardage seasons should he reach that level in 2004. Bragg had 1,388 yards last season and 1,194 yards in 2002.Linebacker Spencer Havner's 17 tackles against Illinois were the most by a Bruin since Robert Thomas made 18 at Washington State in 2001. He has made 60 tackles in the first four games of the 2004 season (16 vs. Oklahoma State, 17 at Illinois, 13 at Washington, 14 vs. San Diego State) and leads the Pac-10 Conference (15.0 per game) by 3.25 stops per game. He led the nation entering last week's games.
At the end of his first two seasons of play, Spencer Havner had totaled 178 tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss and six interceptions to rank with some of UCLA's best ever players.
Justin Medlock's 52-yard field goal against Oklahoma State is the longest by a Bruin since 1997 and tied for fourth-longest in school history. His four field goals against San Diego State are the most by a Bruin since Chris Sailer kicked five against Stanford in 2002.
The 546 yards of total offense gained at Washington is the highest total under head coach Karl Dorrell, bettering the previous high of 481 yards in the previous game at Illinois. The last time the Bruins totaled more yards was Oct. 5, 2002, when they piled up 625 yards at Oregon State.UCLA has had at least 400 yards of total offense in all four games this season. The last time that happened was in 1998, when the Bruins had at least 400 in each of the first five games.
UCLA has rushed for at least 200 yards in three consecutive games for the first time since 2001 (Oregon State, Washington, California).
Last season, UCLA rushed for 1,195 yards (91.9 average) and 11 touchdowns in 13 contests. In four games this year, the Bruins have rushed for 1,093 yards (273.25) and 10 touchdowns.
UCLA's 424 yards rushing at Washington is its best effort since November 17, 1979, when it ran for 446 yards at Oregon in a 35-0 victory.
The Bruins' five offensive touchdowns at Washington and at Illinois were the most since Dec. 1, 2001, when the offense produced seven touchdowns against Arizona State.UCLA has played 13 defensive linemen this season (true freshman Chris Johnson became No. 13 against San Diego State).UCLA has not allowed a fourth-quarter touchdown all season (just one field goal).
Marcedes Lewis' 30 catches in 2003 ranked among the best by a UCLA tight end since 1980. Only Mike Seidman, 41 in 2002, Charles Arbuckle, 33 in 1989 and Paul Bergmann, 44 in 1983 and 41 in 1982, have caught more balls in a season than Lewis.
UCLA has won its last four Pac-10 openers. In league openers under Karl Dorrell, the Bruins are 2-0.
UCLA owns a 30-11 (.732) record in regular-season games played in the Rose Bowl since a loss to Tennessee in the home opener in 1997.
The 2004 season is UCLA's 23rd in the Rose Bowl. Since moving to Pasadena for the 1982 season, the Bruins are 91-41-2 (.687) on the home field.
UCLA is the only school to produce five quarterbacks -- Troy Aikman, Steve Bono, Billy Kilmer, Tom Ramsey, Jay Schroeder -- to have played on a Super Bowl team.
This season marks the 50th anniversary of the Bruins' 1954 National Championship won under coach Red Sanders. UCLA compiled a perfect 9-0 record that season, including a 12-7 win over defending national champion Maryland in the Coliseum. The Bruins did not play in the Rose Bowl game following that magical season because of the 'no repeat' rule. The team was voted No. 1 on the United Press International Poll and shared the national championship with Rose Bowl winner Ohio State, the Associated Press champion. The 1954 team led the nation in scoring offense (40.8) and scoring defense (4.4). The team still holds the school records for fewest rushing yards allowed (659), total defense (1,708) and scoring defense (40). Its 40.8 scoring mark ranks second in school history. Jack Ellena, Jim Salsbury, Bob Davenport and Primo Villanueva all earned first-team All-America honors that season. Members of the national championship team will be honored during the weekend of the Homecoming game against Stanford on October 30.
The following players have changed numbers from those listed in last year's media guide --- safety Eric McNeal, now #2; wide receiver Tab Perry, now #3; fullback Steve Seigel, now #35; linebacker Aaron Whittington, now #42; defensive lineman Bruce Davis, now #44; defensive lineman Kevin Brown, now #75.
The following players have changed numbers from those listed in this year's media guide --- wide receiver Brandon Breazell, now # 1; safety Dennis Keyes, now #11; defensive back Rodney Van, now #12; wide receiver Michael Norris, now #22; defensive back Trey Brown, now #23; linebacker Mark Mangelsdorf, now #23; fullback Jimmy Stephens, now #45; offensive tackle Tony Lee, now #70.
UCLA's 10 bowl wins in the last 22 years rank No. 1 in the Pac-10. Only seven schools (Florida State, Miami, Tennessee, Michigan, Alabama, Georgia, Penn State) have won more bowl games in that span.
During the last 22 years, UCLA has been ranked in the final Associated Press Top 25 on 11 occasions the most of any Pac-10 school (Washington and USC are second with 10).
In the last 22 seasons (1982-2003), UCLA has more Top 10 rankings (seven) than any other Pac-10 school. In fact, only seven schools (Florida State, Nebraska, Florida, Miami, Michigan, Tennessee, Oklahoma) have been ranked in the AP Top 10 more often than UCLA during this period.
Starting Streaks -- Steven Vieira has started the last 33 straight games along the offensive line at either guard or tackle. Ed Blanton has started the last 17 games at tackle. Defensively, cornerback Matt Clark and linebacker Spencer Havner have each started the last 15 straight games.
Two Bruins on the 2004 roster are the sons of former Bruin football players -- DB Trey Brown (dad, Theotis, played running back from 1976-78 and rushed for 2,914 yards to rank No. 7 all-time at school); DL Bruce Davis (dad, Bruce, played offensive line from 1975-78 and went on to a long NFL career, winning two Super Bowl titles).
Six Bruins made their first career starts in the opener against Oklahoma State -- junior Robert Cleary at weak guard; sophomore Justin Hickman and redshirt freshman Bruce Davis at defensive end; sophomore Robert Garcia at defensive tackle, sophomore Danny Nelson at linebacker and junior Marcus Cassel at cornerback. In addition, sophomore Kevin Brown made his first start on defense (tackle) after starting three times at offensive guard in 2003.
Three more Bruins made their first career starts at Illinois -- true freshman Kenneth Lombard at defensive tackle; redshirt freshman Aaron Whittington at outside linebacker and sophomore Eric McNeal at strong safety. Lombard is the first true freshman defensive lineman to start a game since Ken Kocher and Anthony Fletcher started the 1999 Rose Bowl.
Two Bruins -- defensive end Kyle Morgan and defensive tackle C.J. Niusulu -- made the first starts of their careers at Washington. Linebacker Benjamin Lorier and wide receivers Marcus Everett and Brandon Breazell made their first career starts and Eyoseph Efseaff made his first defensive start against San Diego State.
A school-record 12 true freshmen have played for the Bruins this year. Nine made their debut against the Cowboys -- OL Brian Abraham; WR Brandon Breazell; DE Brigham Harwell; LB Fred Holmes; OL Chris Joseph; DT Kenneth Lombard; WR/DB Michael Norris; OL Shannon Tevaga; and CB Rodney Van. Two more played at Illinois -- WR Marcus Everett and RB Chris Markey. DT Chris Johnson made his debut against San Diego State. UCLA played five true freshmen, including returners Mil'Von James, Maurice Drew, Joe Cowan and Kevin Brown, in 2003. Ten true freshmen played in 2002.
Ten redshirt freshmen saw their first career action in the season-opener -- CB Trey Brown; DL Bruce Davis; DL Nikola Dragovic; DB Chris Horton; DB Dennis Keyes; DB Olukayode Oredugba; FB Michael Pitre; DL William Snead; DL Noah Sutherland; and LB Aaron Whittington. Three junior college transfers also saw their first action in the Oklahoma State game -- DL Justin Hickman; DL Kyle Morgan; and LB Danny Nelson. Redshirt freshman WR Matthew Slater made his first appearance in the Illinois game. Running back Derrick Williams made his debut against San Diego State.
SERIES NOTES -- UCLA leads the series with Arizona, 17-9-2 and has won the last three meetings. The series dates back to 1927. The teams have not played in the Rose Bowl since the 1999 season which marked Arizona's last win in the series.
The Bruins won last year's game in Tucson by a score of 24-21. Arizona drove 80 yards on its first possession to take a 7-0 lead and led 21-10 at halftime. UCLA closed to within four points when it marched 80 yards to start the second half. Neither team could score again until Bruin defensive tackle Rodney Leisle intercepted a shovel pass and returned it 55 yards for the game-winning touchdown at the 13:41 mark of the fourth quarter. Both teams missed subsequent fourth quarter field goals and the Bruin prevailed.
Arizona racked up 519 yards of total offense for the game, but managed just 21 points, all in the first half. Four Bruin interceptions helped to keep UCLA in the game.
NOTING THE WILDCATS -- Arizona is 1-3 overall with the win coming over Northern Arizona in its opener. The Wildcats lost 23-6 to Utah, 9-7 to Wisconsin and 20-19 to Washington State. This the Arizona's first road game of the season.
Arizona ranks 112th nationally in total offense (270.25), including 163.75 in the air and 106.50 on the ground. It is averaging 13.25 points while allowing 13.75 (14th in NCAA). Defensively, the Wildcats are allowing 294.50 yards (24th in NCAA), 108.50 on the ground (30th in NCAA) and 186.00 in the air.
GAME 4 -- The Bruins spotted San Diego State a 3-0 lead and then scored 27 consecutive points to build a 27-3 lead early in the third quarter en route to a 33-10 victory at the Rose Bowl on October 2.With the Aztecs leading 3-0, it took UCLA just three plays to take the lead for good. On third-and-three at the UCLA 43-yard line, tailback Maurice Drew busted over the right side, broke two tackles with a 360-spin move and raced 57 yards to the end zone. It was Drew's seventh TD of the year and his fifth of at least 47 yards.
In the second quarter, inside linebacker Spencer Havner picked off a Matt Dlugolecki pass and returned it 52 yards for a 14-3 lead. It was the seventh interception of his career and his third touchdown. Field goals of 22 and 40 yards by Justin Medlock gave the Bruins a 20-3 halftime lead.
On the first possession of the second half, the Bruins drove 65 yards and, on third-and-16, Drew Olson found Tab Perry in the end zone for a 27-3 lead. The Aztecs closed to within 27-10 with one minute remaining in the third quarter but two more Medlock field goals from 43 and 44 yards in the fourth quarter, gave the Bruins the 23-point win.
Offensively, UCLA accounted for 410 yards -- 205 on the ground and 205 in the air. Maurice Drew rushed for 161 yards and one touchdown and accounted for 222 all-purpose yards and added 47 offensive yards on a pass.Drew Olson completed 14 of 29 passes for 158 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He hit on seven of 10 passes in the second half. Tab Perry and Junior Taylor each made three receptions, Marcus Everett made two in his first start and nine different players caught a pass, including eight on passes from Olson.
Defensively, UCLA allowed just one touchdown and 402 yards. In the first half, the Aztecs were limited to three points and 135 yards, including just two net yards rushing. The defense played without Justin London, Kenneth Lombard, Aaron Whittington, Dennis Keyes (all due to injury) and C.J. Niusulu (suspension).
Spencer Havner led the defense with 14 tackles, including one for loss, and the seventh interception and third touchdown of his career. Wesley Walker, starting in the middle, added a career-high nine tackles, including 0.5 sacks and a second stop for loss, and Benjamin Lorier, making his first start, tied his career high with seven stops, including one for loss. Four members of the secondary -- Jarrad Page, Eric McNeal, Marcus Cassel and Ben Emanuel -- made six tackles each and Matt Clark added an interception that led to a field goal.
BRUIN HEAD COACH Karl Dorrell -- Former Bruin wide receiver Karl Dorrell is in his second season as the 15th head coach in UCLA history. He returned to Westwood, where he played on teams that won five consecutive bowl games, after serving as an assistant coach at both the collegiate and professional levels. The Bruins qualified for their sixth bowl game in the past seven seasons in Dorrell's first season at the helm. His record is 9-8 overall, 5-4 in Pac-10 play.
Dorrell came to UCLA after working the previous three seasons for Mike Shanahan's Denver Broncos as an assistant coach in charge of wide receivers. Prior to his arrival in Denver, Dorrell coached 12 years on the collegiate level, including seven seasons as an offensive coordinator.
During his career as a collegiate player and coach, Dorrell has participated in 13 bowl games, including three Rose Bowls, two Fiesta Bowls and two Cotton Bowls. He played on teams that won three Pacific-10 titles and defeated USC four times in five seasons. His 108 receptions still rank in the all-time school career Top 10 (tied for 10th) and his receiving yards total of 1,517 yards ranks No. 13.
Dorrell's previous collegiate coaching experience includes six seasons at Colorado, two years at Northern Arizona, and one year each at UCLA, Washington, Arizona State and Central Florida. He earned his bachelor's degree from UCLA following the 1986 season and began his coaching career in the 1988 season as a graduate assistant.
He became receivers coach at Central Florida the next season and moved on to Northern Arizona for the 1990 and 1991 seasons as offensive coordinator and receivers coach. He then embarked on the first of two stints at Colorado. Dorrell served as receivers coach in the 1992-93 seasons. During that tenure, receivers Charles Johnson and Michael Westbrook, became just the fourth pair of wideouts on the same team in NCAA history to accumulate more than 1,000 yards in the same season.
Dorrell returned to the Pac-10 for the 1994 season as receivers coach at Arizona State before going back to Colorado for the 1995-98 campaigns as offensive coordinator and receivers coach. The Buffaloes won three bowl games in that four-year span and were victorious in 33 of 47 games. He spent the 1999 season at Washington, serving as offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach.
The former Bruin then moved to the professional ranks and served as receiving coach with the Broncos from 2000 until the time he took the UCLA job on December 18, 2003. In his first season in Denver, Bronco receiver Rod Smith earned a spot in the Pro Bowl after shattering the team record with 1,602 receiving yards and fellow wideout Ed McCaffrey caught a then-franchise record 101 passes. In 2001, Smith set a new team mark with 113 catches.
COACHING MOVES -- The Bruins have added three new offensive coaches to the staff for the 2004 season. Tom Cable, former head coach at Idaho, serves as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach. Cable has been an assistant coach at Colorado (offensive coordinator), California, UNLV and Cal State Fullerton.
Dino Babers is mentoring the Bruin wide receivers. He came to UCLA after serving as an assistant coach at Pittsburgh last season and in previous seasons at Texas A&M, Arizona (offensive coordinator), San Diego State, Purdue, Northern Arizona, UNLV and Eastern Illinois.
Jim Svoboda is serving as quarterbacks coach. He came to UCLA after serving as offensive coordinator at Northwest Missouri State University where his units led the nation (Div. II) in scoring in 1998 and 2000. Svoboda had previously served as head coach at Nebraska Wesleyan University.
In conjunction with the new hires, Assistant Head Coach Jon Embree is now coach ing the tight end position. Last season, he was the wide receivers coach. Defensive line coach Don Johnson is now serving as recruiting coordinator. In addition, outside linebacker / nickel back coach Brian Schneider is in charge of all of the Bruin special teams units.
#21 RB Maurice Drew -- A powerful back with a breakaway burst of speed, the spectacular sophomore is having an outstanding season. On the year, he ranks fourth in the NCAA and first in the Pac-10 in rushing with his average of 167.2 yards per game. He also leads the nation and the Pac-10 in all-purpose yards (229.5) and ranks 13th in the NCAA and second in the Pac-10 in scoring (10.5 points per game).Drew is averaging 10.27 yards every time he touches the football (965 yards on 94 touches). He is averaging 8.4 yards per rush and five of his seven touchdowns this season have been at least 47 yards (46.14 average), including runs of 62, 58 and 57 yards.In his 17-game career, he has rushed for 1,251 yards (5.8 average) and 12 touchdowns. He has scored 14 touchdowns overall, including two kickoff returns, and eight of those 14 have measured at least 47 yards.
Drew enjoyed the greatest rushing afternoon in UCLA history in the Bruins' 37-31 victory at Washington. UCLA rallied from a 24-7 first-quarter deficit on the legs of Drew.
On the afternoon, the 5-8 dynamo rushed for a school-record 322 yards, breaking DeShaun Foster's mark of 301 yards, set in 2001 against Washington. He also scored a school-record (rushing and overall) five touchdowns on runs of 47, 62, 58, 15 and 37 yards thanks to huge holes, great moves, broken tackles and outstanding speed to the outside.
Drew's 322 yards also rank No. 3 all-time in the Pacific-10 conference, bettered only by Reuben Mayes' 357 for Washington State in 1984 and Ricky Bell's 347 for USC in 1976. He also tied the Pac-10 record for rushing touchdowns, held by five players. His effort was the 75th 300+ game in NCAA history.For his efforts at Washington, he was named the Walter Camp Football Foundation National 1-A Offensive Player of the Week. He was also named National Player of the Week by The Sporting News magazine and radio, USA Today and collegefootballnews.com. He was also Sports Illustrated's Five-Star Player. In addition, he was selected Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Week.
On his first carry of the game, he burst to the outside and raced 47 yards to tie the game at 7-7. On his second carry, with UCLA trailing 24-7 and 2:30 remaining in the first quarter, he raced 62 yards, the second-longest run of his career, for his second score of the quarter. On his fourth carry, a third-and-12 with 40 seconds left in the quarter, he sped 58 yards for his third touchdown. Overall in the first quarter, he rushed for 169 yards and three touchdowns on four attempts.
He gave the Bruins the lead for good (27-24) with 4:16 remaining in the half when he scooted around right end for a 15-yard touchdown. He finished the half with 235 yards and four touchdowns on 13 attempts.
In the third quarter, he broke several tackles en route to his school-record fifth touchdown, a 37-yard run on the Bruins' first possession of the half. Despite suffering calf cramps, he broke Foster's record on a two-yard run in the fourth quarter. Late in the game, he helped the Bruins run over five minutes off the clock by picking up two first downs on third-down runs.On the day, he had eight runs of at least 12 yards, 13 of at least five yards and only one for negative yardage and one for zero yards.
Against San Diego State, he led the Bruins in rushing with his third straight 100-yard game, finishing with 161 yards and one touchdown on 21 carries. He had four double-figure runs and just two for negative yardage. His touchdown, which measured 57 yards, gave UCLA a 7-3 lead and included a 360-spin, two broken tackles and a footrace to the end zone.
In addition, he made one reception for nine yards, returned one kickoff for 27 yards and returned three punts for 25 yards, giving him 222 all-purpose yards. He also completed the first pass of his career for 47 yards to Michael Pitre.
In the season opener, Drew rushed for 44 yards on 12 carries against Oklahoma State. He also made three receptions for 92 yards, including a 57-yard catch-and-run that gave the Bruins a first down at the 12-yard line with just under seven minutes remaining in the contest. On the afternoon, he had 136 all-purpose yards.
At Illinois, Drew showed his speed and strength, rushing for 142 yards and one touchdown on 21 attempts. On UCLA's second possession, he broke a couple of tackles and ran away from the defense for a 47-yard touchdown, the second longest scoring run of his career. The 142 rushing yards also ranks second in his career. He had four runs of at least 10 yards. Drew also returned one kickoff for 25 yards and added one reception for nine yards to total 176 all-purpose yards.
In 2003, Drew led the team in rushing (582 yards) and also excelled as a kick returner (two kickoff returns for touchdown). He was named first-team Freshman All-Pac-10 as a kick returner by The Sporting News.
Drew ranked second in the Pac-10 and 14th nationally in kickoff return average (26.65) and 12th in the conference in rushing (44.77). He returned kickoffs for scores against Oklahoma (91 yards) and USC (99 yards).
Drew's 83-yard touchdown run from scrimmage against Arizona State was the longest of the season in the conference. His total of 176 yards rushing (18 carries) for the game against the Sun Devils ranked as the second-best total ever by a UCLA true freshman. Drew made the first start of his career at Washington State and rushed for 80 yards. He also started in the bowl game against Fresno State and led the team with 65 yards rushing.
#87 WR Craig Bragg -- All-America candidate Craig Bragg enjoyed a second consecutive standout season in 2003. A big-play performer (11 touchdowns of at least 40 yards during his career), the fifth-year senior figures to own virtually all of UCLA's career receiving records by the end of his senior season. He is the only player in school history to make at least 50 receptions in two different seasons.
Bragg missed the San Diego State game with a dislocated left shoulder suffered at Washington on Sept. 18. He has a streak of 39 consecutive games in which he has played in which he has caught a pass and a string of 34 games in which he has made at least two receptions. He needs just 11 receptions and 442 receiving yards to rank No. 1 on both career charts. His 169 career catches now rank second on UCLA's career list, having passed Danny Farmer versus Oklahoma State. His 2,579 receiving yards rank second on the career list, having passed Kevin Jordan at Washington. He has 20 touchdowns (17 receiving, two rushing and one punt return), including 11 (nine receptions, one run and one punt return) of at least 40 yards.
His 2,579 career receiving yards rank fifth among all active Division IA players and his 76 career punt returns rank fifth. His 169 receptions rank T-seventh, his 17 receiving touchdowns rank T-eighth and his 3,686 all-purpose yards rank ninth.
Bragg has a career touchdown average of 39.8 yards (37.8 on receptions) and has accounted for at least 100 receiving yards in seven games in his career, a total bettered by just four players at UCLA. He also ranks third on UCLA's career punt return list with 76, three behind No. 2 Ron Carver (79).
In the opener against Oklahoma State, he made four receptions for 87 yards, all in the first half. Three of his four catches resulted in first downs (his fourth was a 13-yard gain on which he fumbled so no first down is credited) and he had receptions of 38 and 33 yards in the second quarter, the former setting up UCLA's field goal on the final play of the half. He also returned three punts for 47 yards, including one for 33 yards in the fourth quarter.
At Illinois, his diving catch in the end zone for a 41-yard touchdown gave the Bruins a 7-0 lead on their first offensive possession. He also made a 14-yard scoring grab with 3:58 left in the second quarter to give UCLA a 21-7 halftime lead. His third reception also produced a first down, making him three for three in that category.
At Washington, he made five receptions for 57 yards. On a fourth-quarter reception, he suffered a dislocated left shoulder. Four of his five receptions produced first downs. He also returned four punts for 26 yards.
On the year, he leads the team with 12 receptions for 217 yards (18.1 average), two touchdowns and 10 first downs.
He ranks fourth in the Pac-10 in punt returns (9.1), sixth in the Pac-10 in receiving yards (72.3) and T-7th in receptions (4.0).
In 2003, Bragg saw action in all 13 games with 11 starts. With 73 receptions, he became the first Bruin to register at least 50 catches in two different seasons (55 in 2002). He became the sixth Bruin to break the 1,000-yard plateau with his total of 1,065 receiving yards. He ranked sixth in the Pac-10 with his average of 5.62 receptions per game, seventh in receiving yards per game (81.92), seventh in all-purpose yards (106.77) and eighth in punt returns (7.95 yards). His total of 73 catches ranked third on the all-time UCLA list and his 1,065 receiving yards ranked fifth. He also set a school record for punt returns in a season with 38.
In 2002, he led the Pac-10 in punt returns and grabbed a school sophomore record 55 passes for 889 yards. No Bruin had ever entered their junior season with more career receptions (84) and career receiving yards (1,297) than Bragg. His nine touchdowns in 2002 averaged 43.6 yards per play (74-punt return, 41, 33, 5, 37, 53, 71, 46 and 33 yards). He ranked ninth in the Pac-10 in receiving yards and 10th in receptions. He also led the league in punt return average (16.0).
He enjoyed one of the finest afternoon's in UCLA history against Oregon in 2002 when he caught nine passes (tied for eighth on school list) for 230 yards (No. 2 on school list) with three touchdowns. Bragg was named the Most Valuable Player in the Sega Sports Las Vegas Bowl after catching four passes for 38 yards and returning a punt 74 yards for the go-ahead touchdown.
In 2001, he led the team with 29 catches, averaging 14.1 yards per catch, and was the team's No. 4 rusher with 100 yards (12.5 average) and two touchdowns. He also averaged 8.4 yards on 14 punt returns and 18.6 yards on 10 kickoff returns.
#14 QB Drew Olson -- In the opener against Oklahoma State, the true junior completed 16 of 36 passes for 252 yards, just 14 shy of his career best. He completed passes to six different receivers, including seven to wide receivers, seven to running backs and two to tight ends. He also had two fourth-quarter interceptions, both on tipped passes. His 57-yard pass play to Maurice Drew in the fourth quarter was the longest of his career.
He enjoyed an outstanding afternoon at Illinois. He recorded a career best with three touchdown passes (41 and 14 yards to Craig Bragg and 15 yards to Marcedes Lewis). On the day, he completed 14 of 21 passes for 208 yards with one interception (tipped pass). He led UCLA on scoring drives of 96 and 65 yards on its first two possessions to build a first-quarter lead of 14-0. He also had a career-long 29-yard run and finished with 29 net rushing yards.
At Washington, the site of his first career start in 2002, he helped rally the Bruins from a 24-7 deficit. On the afternoon, he completed 12 of 17 passes for 122 yards and one interception on a deflected pass. In the second half, he completed nine of 10 passes, including his final seven, for 97 yards and five passing first downs.
Against San Diego State, Olson completed 14 of 29 passes to eight different receivers for 158 yards with one touchdown and one interception. His 23-yard scoring strike to Tab Perry on third-and-16 gave UCLA a 27-3 lead on its first possession of the second half. He also led the Bruins to a touchdown on their opening possession of the game. In the second half, he completed seven of 10 passes (six of eight in third quarter) for 90 yards and one touchdown.
On the season, Olson has completed 56 of 103 passes (54.4) for 740 yards, four touchdowns and five interceptions (four on deflections). He ranks seventh in total offense (196.8 yards), eighth in the Pac-10 in passing (185.0 yards), and 10th in passing efficiency (117.83 rating).
He now has 282 completions in his 25-game career (18 starts). That total ranks No. 8 in UCLA history (he passed 1967 Heisman Trophy winner Gary Beban against Illinois), just seven behind No. 7 Dennis Dummit, who will be inducted into the UCLA Hall of Fame on Friday night. In addition, he is just the ninth player in school history to record at least 3,000 career passing yards (3,509).
Olson began the 2003 season as the No. 2 quarterback, but found himself thrust to the forefront for the second straight year because of injury. He replaced an injured Matt Moore in the first half of the opener at Colorado and went on to appear in 12 games and start nine times.
Olson ranked seventh in the Pac-10 in passing yards per game (172.2), ninth in total offense (157.2) and 10th in passing efficiency rating (111.27). His 173 completions ranked 12th on UCLA's single-season list. He became the 14th Bruin overall and just the fourth sophomore to pass for more than 2,000 yards in a season (2,067).
He began the 2002 season behind four-year starter Cory Paus. Olson ended the year by starting in the final five games after Paus suffered a season-ending ankle injury against California. Olson was also injured in that game and sat out the next contest against Stanford before returning to start the final five games of the season.
Olson made his first career start at Washington and became the first Bruin true freshman since Tom Ramsey in 1979 to win his initial road start. He completed 13 of 27 passes for 189 yards and did not commit a turnover. He also became just the third UCLA true freshman quarterback to start the game against USC, joining Tom Ramsey and Cade McNown.
MORE QUARTERBACK -- Junior transfer David Koral gained valuable experience during Fall camp, becoming more familiar with the offensive scheme. He entered UCLA in January of 2004 following a transfer from Santa Monica College and participated in Spring Practice. He completed 55% of his passes for 2,202 yards and had 18 touchdowns and six interceptions last season at SMC. Third-year sophomore walk-on Brian Callahan possesses an excellent knowledge of the offense and is also competing for playing time behind Olson.
#29 RB MANUEL WHITE -- One of two season captains elected by his teammates, White is a big back who has the speed to play tailback, the strength to play fullback and the receiving skills to contribute at either position.
He enjoyed a career game in the opener against Oklahoma State. He rushed for a career-high 145 yards on 20 carries and scored both Bruin touchdowns. His first, on which he broke several tackles and crossed the field from left to right for a 60-yard score, the longest run of his career, tied the game at 7-7. The second, a four-yard blast through the left side, gave UCLA a 14-7 lead. He also made four receptions for 40 yards, giving him 185 all-purpose yards on the afternoon. His previous career-high in rushing (102) was against Illinois in 2003.
At Illinois, White rushed for 97 yards on 20 carries, and his one-yard touchdown on UCLA's opening possession of the second half gave the Bruins a 28-7 lead. He gained 64 of his yards (12 carries) in the final half. He also made two receptions for 16 yards.
At Washington, he broke 80 yards for the third straight game. He finished with 84 yards on 23 carries, including 60 yards on 14 attempts in the second half. He had 10 runs of at least four yards and two in double figures. Against San Diego State, he gained 35 yards on 13 attempts and also caught two passes for eight yards.
White ranks second on the team in rushing with 361 yards (90.2 per game) and is averaging 4.8 yards per attempt. He is also second (tied) with nine receptions. He ranks 42nd in the NCAA and third in the Pac-10 in rushing (90.2) and ninth in the Pac-10 in all-purpose yards (107.0).
In 2003, White missed the final five games of the season due to a fractured right scapula suffered in the first half of the Arizona State contest. The Bruins did not win a game the rest of the season without him in the backfield.
White rushed for a career-high (at the time) 102 yards on 18 carries in the win over Illinois. In the fourth quarter, he carried on nine of UCLA's 16 scrimmage plays for 40 yards, including each of the first seven plays of UCLA's final nine-play possession. At Oklahoma, White led the Bruins in rushing with 66 yards on 19 carries, including an 11-yard scoring run.
Against Washington, he led the team in rushing for the fourth straight game when he rushed for 83 yards and a touchdown. His 56-yard run in the fourth quarter was UCLA's longest offensive play from scrimmage in 2003.On the year, White ranked third on the team with 379 yards (3.9 average) despite not carrying the ball in the opener and missing the final five games of the season.
For his career, White has rushed for a total of 1,411 yards, No. 25 on UCLA's career list, and 14 touchdowns.
MORE RUNNING BACK -- Junior Jason Harrison, redshirt freshman Derrick Williams and true freshman Chris Markey each had their moments to impress the coaches in the pre-season.Harrison missed the entire 2003 season after injuring a knee in the 2002 regular-season finale against Washington State. Williams has run hard this Fall and has a chance to work his way into the regular rotation and also help on kickoff returns. He carried twice for minus-two yards against San Diego State. Markey, who totaled 2,837 rushing yards and 46 touchdowns last season as a prep senior, played one series against Illinois and had five net yards on two attempts. Against San Diego State, he returned one kickoff for 24 yards and carried once for 12 yards.
TIGHT END -- True junior Marcedes Lewis enters the season on the 'Watch List' for the John Mackey Award, presented annually to the nation's best tight end. In the opener against Oklahoma State, Lewis made two receptions for 23 yards. Both of his catches came on third down and both moved the chains, one on UCLA's first touchdown drive and one on the field goal drive at the end of the half.At Illinois, he led the team with four receptions for 62 yards and one touchdown. He made a 23-yard catch and run on UCLA's first play from scrimmage and a 16-yard reception on UCLA's first series of the second half, both drives that ended in touchdowns. He also made a 15-yard scoring catch in the fourth quarter on which his second effort moved the ball into the end zone. On the day, he produced three first downs.
At Washington, he made two receptions for 21 yards and one first down. He made a key 19-yard reception on the Bruins' field goal drive that gave them a 37-31 lead. Against San Diego State, he made one reception for nine yards.
On the year, he is second (tied) on the team with nine receptions and 115 receiving yards and has produced six first downs to go with his touchdown.
The lone returner at tight end, Lewis finished the 2003 season with 30 receptions for 377 yards (12.6 average) and three touchdowns. Those 30 catches rank fifth among Bruin tight ends since 1980. He ranked second on the team in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown receptions and tied for second in average per reception (five or more catches).
Lewis led all Bruin receivers with six receptions for 96 yards and one touchdown in the 2003 season-opener against Colorado. His 13-yard scoring reception gave the Bruins a 14-10 lead in the third quarter. Lewis came off the bench and led all Bruin receivers with four catches for 67 yards, including a 31-yard touchdown grab, against California. All four of his receptions produced first downs, two on third-down situations. At USC, he started in a two-tight end formation and made one reception, a 17-yard touchdown. He made two receptions for 13 yards in the Silicon Valley Football Classic against Fresno State.
Junior Keith Carter participated in Fall camp on a limited basis. He saw action against Oklahoma State on five snaps, his first action since the 2002 Las Vegas Bowl. He saw more extensive action at Illinois, at Washington and against San Diego State, especially in double-tight end formations. Carter, who was expected to compete for a starting spot in 2003, suffered a fractured and dislocated right hip in a motorcycle accident on April 3, 2003. He sat out the 2003 football season after undergoing a series of surgical procedures.
Carter appeared in nine games as a redshirt freshman in 2002 and made three starts at tight end. He totaled five catches and also saw duty as a H-back and on special teams.Redshirt sophomore J.J. Hair played versus Oklahoma State and Washington. Against San Diego State, he made a reception good for eight yards and a first down but suffered a sprained right shoulder on the play.
OFFENSIVE LINE -- In four games, the line has helped the Bruins average 273.2 yards on the ground (seventh in the NCAA) and 470.0 yards overall (10th in the NCAA). It has also protected quarterback Drew Olson extremely well, allowing just two sacks in the four games.Senior Steven Vieira has been in the starting lineup in 35 of the past 36 games. He is at a different position along the line for the third straight season and played every snap in the first four games at strong guard.
In 2003, he was a starting tackle, having switched to that position in the Spring of 2003. Prior to that, he started 18 of the previous 19 games at right guard during the 2001 and 2002 seasons. He originally began his Bruin career at tackle and shifted to guard prior to the 2001 season.
Against Oklahoma State, redshirt junior Mike McCloskey returned to the starting lineup for the first time since the fifth game of the 2003 season. He has played every snap of the first four games. He originally won the center job in a competition during 2002 Fall camp. He then started all 13 games and earned second-team Freshman All-America honors from The Sporting News. McCloskey started the first five games of last season before suffering a fractured ankle in the Washington game which sidelined him for the remainder of the year.
Senior Paul Mociler started 10 games at right guard in 2003 and performed well at center after moving there in Spring 2004. During the off-season, he moved to strong tackle, won the job in Fall camp. He has played every snap against Oklahoma State, Illinois, Washington and San Diego State. Mociler made his first career start in the 2002 opener against Colorado State and made appearances in seven games that season.
Redshirt junior Ed Blanton is in his second season as a starter. He has played the entire contests against Oklahoma State, Illinois, Washington and San Diego State at weak tackle. He has now started 17 straight games. He emerged from 2003 Spring drills as the starter at the right tackle position and started all 13 games a year ago. He made one start in the 2002 season against San Diego State, playing the entire contest in place of injured tackle Mike Saffer, and made appearances in four games overall.Redshirt junior Robert Cleary made his first career start at weak guard against Oklahoma State and played the entire contest. He took advantage of Eyoseph Efseaff's injury during Fall camp and earned the starting position. He also started against Illinois, Washington and San Diego State and has played very well.
Redshirt sophomore Robert Chai started eight games at the center position a year ago after McCloskey went down with a season-ending ankle injury. He did not play in the opener but alternated with Cleary at the weak guard slot against Illinois, Washington and San Diego State.
Three true freshmen -- Brian Abraham (tackle), Chris Joseph (tackle) and Shannon Tevaga (guard) -- have each looked impressive in Fall camp and are listed No. 2 on the depth chart at their respective positions. While they have not seen action on offense, all three have played on the PAT-field goal team in all four games.
WIDE RECEIVERS -- Senior Tab Perry returned to practice with the team on August 18 after being academically ineligible for the 2003 season. He was readmitted to UCLA on August 17 and began practicing with the team on the next day. On Sept. 3, the afternoon before the opener against Oklahoma State, the NCAA granted UCLA's request for a progress-towards-degree waiver for Perry, allowing him to compete this season.He made one reception for no yards against Oklahoma State and returned one kickoff for 32 yards in his first action since the 2002 Las Vegas Bowl. At Illinois, he made one catch for 10 yards. At Washington, he did not make a reception but returned one kickoff for 24 yards to give the Bruins the football at their own 39-yard line on their first possession of the game (a personal foul against Washington accounted for 15 yards).
Against San Diego State, he made three receptions for 34 yards. His 23-yard touchdown catch on third-and-16 on UCLA's first possession of the second half gave the Bruins a 27-3 lead.Perry now has 67 career catches (T-21st on the all-time school list) for 1,216 yards (17th on the school list) and four touchdowns. He ranks second in career kickoff returns (58) and kickoff return yardage (1,318) and needs just eight returns and 98 yards to tie those school records. He also holds the single-season school record in both categories.
True junior Junior Taylor started the opener against Oklahoma State at split end but did not make a reception. At Illinois, he made two catches for 34 yards, producing first downs with both receptions. His 24-yard second-quarter catch was immediately followed by Craig Bragg's second touchdown catch that gave UCLA a 21-7 lead.
At Washington, he made four receptions for 41 yards -- all in the second half. He made a key third-down reception (seven yards) for a first down on UCLA's fourth quarter field goal drive. On UCLA's final possession, he made an 18-yard catch-and-run on third down to help the Bruins run over five minutes off the clock.
Against San Diego State, he made three catches for 16 yards and one first down.On the year, Taylor has made nine receptions for 91 yards (10.1 average) and five first downs. He is tied for second on the squad with his nine catches.
In 2003, Taylor ranked fourth on the squad with his 24 receptions and third with his 302 yards. He had a breakthrough evening against San Diego State, recording career highs in receptions (seven) and yards (110). He also scored UCLA's first touchdown on a 41-yard reception.
True sophomore Joe Cowan caught two passes for 10 yards in the opener and did not make a reception at Illinois or at Washington. Against San Diego State, he had one reception for 25 yards. In 2003, he made seven receptions, including one for a touchdown versus USC.
True freshman Marcus Everett made the first start of his career against San Diego State and responded with two receptions for 49 yards and two first downs. His 33-yard reception was a key play on UCLA's field goal drive at the end of the half that made the score 20-3.
True freshman Brandon Breazell also made his first start against San Diego State.
#41 LB Spencer Havner -- Junior inside linebacker Spencer Havner, a candidate for All-America honors, is on the pre-season `Watch List' for the Butkus and Lombardi awards. The third-year starter has also been selected one of two season captains by a vote of his teammates.
Havner, the nation's leading tackler entering games of Oct. 2, is off to a great start in the 2004 season. In four games, he has made 60 tackles and his average of 15.0 leads the Pac-10 by 3.25 stops per game. He recorded 16 tackles, including 11 solos and five assists, in the opener against Oklahoma State despite playing with a bruised shoulder that caused him to miss time in the second quarter. Two of his stops were for losses (four yards) and 11 were made in the second half.
At Illinois, he made a career-high 17 tackles (seven solos and 10 assists), the most by a Bruin since Robert Thomas made 18 at Washington State in 2001. He also blocked a field goal for the third time in his career and broke up one pass.
At Washington, he led the team in tackles for the third straight game, finishing with 13 stops (10 solos), including one for loss.
Against San Diego State, he led the team for the fourth consecutive game, finishing with 14 (six solos), including one for loss. In addition, with the Bruins leading just 7-3 in the second quarter, Havner picked off a pass and returned it 52 yards for a touchdown and a 14-3 lead. He was selected Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts.
Havner has now made seven interceptions in his career and has returned three for touchdowns. He averages 33.1 yards per interception and his touchdowns have measured 52, 42 and 23 yards.
In 2003, he ranked third on the squad with 82 tackles, tied for the team lead with three interceptions and ranked 25th in the Pac-10 with his average of 6.3 tackles. Havner was selected honorable mention all-conference.
Havner recorded seven tackles in the Oklahoma game and returned an interception 72 yards. He recorded seven tackles against San Diego State with one sack and an interception. He was credited with eight tackles, an interception and a forced fumble at Arizona. He earned Pac-10 Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance in the Cal game after he blocked two field goals, one of which was returned for a touchdown. Havner made a career-best (at the time) 13 tackles at Washington State, including two for losses.
In 2002, he started all 13 games and his 96 tackles ranked second on the team and as the second-most ever by a Bruin freshman player (James Washington - 119 in 1984). His average of 7.4 tackles ranked 11th in the conference. His 12 tackles for loss were second on the team. He ranked third on the team with three interceptions, two of which he returned for touchdowns to tie an NCAA record for linebackers. Havner was selected first-team Freshman All-America and Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year by The Sporting News.
#24 FS BEN EMANUEL -- This fifth-year senior made 10 tackles, including four solos and six assists, in the 2004 season opener against Oklahoma State. Against Illinois, he added eight stops (five solos), tied for second on the squad. In the victory at Washington, he made four stops (three solos) and combined to stop Husky receiver Charles Frederick at the two-yard line on the game's final play to preserve the win. Against San Diego State, he added six tackles (three solos).
On the year, he is second (tied) on the team with 28 tackles, including 14 solos. He has started 31 of the last 34 Bruin games, six at strong safety and 25 at free safety.
Emanuel finished fourth on the team in tackles last season with 80. He made a career-high 12 stops in the season-opener at Colorado. Emanuel recorded 10 tackles in the Illinois contest. He tied for the team lead with 10 stops at Arizona. Ben made five tackles, recovered two fumbles, forced one fumble and made an interception in the game at Washington State.
Emanuel moved to free safety after starting the first three games of 2002 at strong safety and had 58 tackles for the season. He picked off two passes each in games against Oklahoma State and Washington State. He also returned a fumbled extra point attempt for two points against Colorado State.
#9 LB Justin London -- True junior Justin London, on the pre-season `Watch List' for the Lombardi and Butkus award, sprained his left ankle in practice on August 19 and sat out the opener against Oklahoma State. He returned to practice on September 7 and saw his first game action of the season at Illinois, making three assisted tackles coming off the bench. He started at Washington but played only three snaps before reaggravating his injured ankle. He did not see action against San Diego State.
Last season, he started 12 games and ranked second on the team with 98 tackles. He also ranked second with 8.5 tackles for loss and tied for the team lead with three interceptions. London ranked eighth in the Pac-10 with his average of 7.67 tackles and was selected honorable mention all-conference.London made his first career start in the 2003 opener at Colorado. He made the first interception of his career in the Illinois game. He came off the bench against San Diego State and made a team-best 11 tackles. London picked off his second pass against Washington. He tied for the team lead with 10 stops, forced a fumble and picked off another pass in the game at Arizona. London matched his career-best with 11 tackles, three for losses, against Cal, including a tackle for a key nine-yard loss on the Bears' second possession in overtime. London led the Bruins with nine tackles and forced a fumble at USC, including one tackle for loss.
London saw action in 12 games as a true freshman in 2002 and made five tackles while playing at linebacker and on special teams.
#4 SS Jarrad Page -- Now in his third year as the starter at strong safety, Page was credited with nine tackles (four solos) in the season opener against Oklahoma State. Due to a strained heel, he did not start at Illinois but came off the bench to record three solo tackles. He also forced two first-half fumbles before missing much of the second half due to muscle cramps.
At Washington, he was second on the squad with 10 tackles (six solos), including one for loss. Against San Diego State, he contributed six tackles, including five solos. Page now ranks second (tied) on the team with 28 tackles (18 solos) in four games. He is tied for the Pac-10 lead in fumbles forced (0.50).
The true junior ranked sixth on the team in tackles with 55 in 12 games a year ago. He missed the Arizona game due to an injury which snapped a string of 15 straight starting assignments. Page tied for the team lead with three interceptions, returning one for a touchdown (Washington). He was named honorable mention all-conference.
In 2002, Page saw action in all 13 games and started the final 10 contests at strong safety to become the first Bruin safety since Kenny Easley in 1977 to start as many as 10 games as a true freshman. He finished sixth on the team with 43 stops and added two interceptions. He was named first-team Freshman All-America and first-team Freshman All-Conference teams by The Sporting News.
#6 CB MATT CLARK -- The senior made four tackles, including three solos, in the opening game against Oklahoma State. He recorded six tackles (five solos) at Illinois. In the win at Washington, he made five stops (four solos) and helped hold Charles Frederick to just four receptions. He also combined with Emanuel to stop Frederick at the two-yard line on the game's final play to preserve the win.
Against San Diego State, Clark was credited with three tackles, including one for loss. He also made his first interception of the year and broke up a second pass.
On the year, he ranks sixth on the squad with 18 tackles and leads the team with three pass breakups.Clark started all 12 games in which he played in 2003 and was seventh on the team with 53 tackles. He made his first career start in the 2003 season-opener at Colorado and had seven tackles.Clark picked off the first pass of his career in the Oklahoma contest. He made seven tackles against Washington. Clark made five stops against USC and returned a blocked extra point for a defensive two-point score.
As a sophomore, he appeared in 11 games and had seven tackles. He also saw action as a kickoff and punt returner. In 2001, he was one of three freshmen to earn playing time and saw action in 10 games.
#97 DT C.J. Niusulu -- True junior tackle C.J. Niusulu is the veteran of the defensive front. He was set to make the first start of his career in the season opener against Oklahoma State, but underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee on Sept. 1. He returned to limited duty just 10 days later at Illinois, playing about a dozen snaps and disrupting the Illini offensive line before illness sidelined him.
He made his first career start at Washington and was credited with three tackles (two solos) while adding experience up front. He served a one game suspension for a violation of athletic department policy against San Diego State.
Niusulu appeared in all 13 games last season and accounted for 26 tackles, including five tackles for loss and 0.5 sacks. Niusulu recorded six stops, including 2.5 for loss, in the game at Washington State. He had a career-best seven tackles against Fresno State.
C.J. saw action in five games as a true freshman in 2002. He joined the Bruin defensive rotation after Rodney Leisle broke his foot. Niusulu sat out the final three games of the season after an emergency appendicitis attack the week of the USC contest.
#75 Kevin Brown -- The true sophomore made his first career start on the defensive line in the opener against Oklahoma State. He was credited with five tackles, including one for loss, against the Cowboys. At Illinois, he was credited with one tackle assist. Brown came off the bench at Washington and was credited with two tackle assists. He started and made one tackle against San Diego State.
Brown has established himself as one of the two starting defensive tackles and has the ability to be an outstanding performer. In his first year in the program, he saw action on both sides of the ball. After playing defense for the first seven games of the 2003 season, Kevin switched to the offensive line and started three games (ASU, Stanford, USC) at guard. Brown totaled four tackles on the year.
DEFENSIVE LINE -- Junior transfer Kyle Morgan had an impressive Spring practice and was contending for a starting slot at defensive end during the pre-season camp. However, he injured his left knee in practice and underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus on August 16. He came off the bench against Oklahoma State but was not credited with any tackles. He saw more action off the bench at Illinois and recorded a quarterback hurry.
Morgan made his first career start at Washington and made three solo tackles, including one for loss. He started against San Diego State and had one assist on a quarterback sack.
Morgan played two seasons at Pearl River (MS) Community College and enrolled at UCLA in the 2004 winter quarter.
Redshirt freshman Bruce Davis made his first career start in his first college game in the season opener versus Oklahoma State. A quick and explosive player, he made three tackles (two solos) against the Cowboys. At Illinois, he started and recorded two tackle assists. He came off the bench at Washington and made one solo tackle. He also made one solo tackle off the bench against San Diego State.
True sophomore Justin Hickman is the only lineman to start every game, the first two at left end, the rest at right end. Against Oklahoma State, he recorded four tackles (all assists), including 0.5 sacks (he shared a sack with Danny Nelson). At Illinois, he made three tackles (one solo) and had one quarterback hurry that knocked Jon Beutjer out of the game. At Washington, he started at right end and made two tackles (one solo). Against San Diego State, he made two solo tackles, including one for a 10-yard loss.Hickman leads the defensive line with 11 tackles, including 1.5 for losses.
Sophomore Robert Garcia started at tackle against Oklahoma State and was credited with three tackles. He came off the bench at Illinois but did not play at Washington. He saw limited action versus San Diego State.True freshman Kenneth Lombard saw extensive action against Oklahoma State off the bench and made one tackle. He started at Illinois, becoming the first true freshman to start on the defensive line since Ken Kocher and Anthony Fletcher did it in the 1999 Rose Bowl. He also started at Washington and made one tackle before spraining his shoulder. He did not play against San Diego State due to that shoulder injury.
True freshman Brigham Harwell, a contender for playing time at a defensive end spot, underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee on August 16. He saw limited action in the opener and was credited with two assists. At Illinois, he made five tackles (three solos), including one for loss. He came off the bench at Washington but was not credited with a tackle. He made one tackle off the bench versus San Diego State.
Senior Eyoseph Efseaff, who had started 36 of his 37 previous career games as an offensive lineman, joined the mix along the defensive front in the Illinois game. He had missed significant practice time due to a groin injury and switched over the defensive side of the ball during the Oklahoma State practice week. In his debut at Champaign, he made three tackles (two solos) off the bench. He also came off the bench at Washington. Against San Diego State, he made his first defensive start and was credited with two tackle assists.
Redshirt freshmen Noah Sutherland (one solo), Nikola Dragovic (one assist) and William Snead (three tackles, on solo) all played in the opener. All three played at Illinois with Dragovic recording one assist. Dragovic and Snead both played at Washington. Sutherland and Snead both played against San Diego State (Dragovic did not due to an ankle sprain). In addition, true freshman Chris Johnson made his debut at tackle versus the Aztecs.
LINEBACKER -- Redshirt Junior Wesley Walker and redshirt freshman Aaron Whittington battled for the starting spot at outside linebacker during the Fall. Walker started against Oklahoma State and made eight tackles (four assists) while Whittington made one tackle off the bench.
Against Illinois, both started and played well. Walker moved inside and made five tackles (three solos), including a six-yard sack. Walker played most of the Washington contest in the middle in place of injured Justin London, making four tackles (three solos) and forcing one fumble.
Walker started in the middle against San Diego State and made a career-high nine tackles (four solos), second on the squad to Spencer Havner's 14. He also shared a sack with Kyle Morgan. He currently ranks fourth (tied) on the team with 26 tackles and leads the team with 1.5 sacks. He made 15 tackles last season and had one start against Illinois in 2003.
Whittington made his first career start against Illinois and recorded eight tackles (four solos) and two quarterback hurries. He also started at Washington and made four solo tackles and forced one fumble before suffering a hip pointer in the second half. He did not play against San Diego State.
Junior college transfer Danny Nelson (Arizona Western College) opened at an inside linebacker position against Oklahoma State when Justin London was not available. Nelson made seven tackles (three solos) against the Cowboys and split a sack with end Justin Hickman. He saw limited action at Illinois and made two solo tackles. He also played off the bench at Washington and had two tackle assists versus San Diego State.Senior Benjamin Lorier made one tackle off the bench against both Oklahoma State and Illinois and blocked a punt against the Illini. He had two tackles, including one for loss, at Washington. Against San Diego State, he made his first career start and tied his career-best with seven tackles (three solos), including one for loss.
DEFENSIVE BACKFIELD -- Redshirt junior Marcus Cassel earned the starting nod at cornerback in the opener against Oklahoma State. Cassel, a steady contributor on special teams the last two seasons, made five tackles (three assists) against the Cowboys. At Illinois, he recovered two fumbles in the first half, broke up one pass and made four tackles (one solo). At Washington, he made three solo tackles. Against San Diego State, he made six tackles (four solos) and has 18 stops, seventh on the squad, this year. His two fumble recoveries are tied for second in the Pac-10 (0.50 per game).
Redshirt freshman Chris Horton came off the bench to make two tackles in the opener against Oklahoma State. Against Illinois, Horton came off the bench to make seven tackles (four solos) and made a fourth-quarter interception that led to UCLA's final touchdown on the ensuing play. At Washington, he came off the bench to make eight tackles, third on the squad. He had four solos and four assists, including one for loss. Against San Diego State, he made four tackles (two solos) off the bench. In four games, he has made 21 stops (12 solos) and ranks fifth on the squad.
Against Illinois, Keyes made five tackles off the bench. McNeal made his first career start in place of Jarrad Page at strong safety and responded with three stops. Both played in the secondary and on special teams at Washington. McNeal, playing in UCLA's nickel package against San Diego State, made a career-high six tackles, including five solos. Keyes did not play due to his shoulder injury.Redshirt sophomore Jebiaus Brown and redshirt freshman Trey Brown each made one tackle at Illinois and both played at Washington. Against San Diego State, T. Brown tackled the Aztec punter for a 23-yard loss to set up a field goal and also saw late action at cornerback. True freshman Rodney Van made a special teams tackle assist at Washington and, against San Diego State, was in action at cornerback, making one tackle.
One of the premier punters in the nation, senior Chris Kluwe has been named to the pre-season `Watch List' for the Ray Guy Award. In 2003, he averaged 42.9 yards (3,908) on 91 punts with 19 placed inside the 20-yard line in his first season as a starter. He set new school records for punting yardage and kicks, breaking Nate Fikse's mark of 3,246 yards (in 2000) and Matt McFarland's mark of 80 punts (1978). He ranked fourth in the Pac-10 and 26th in the NCAA in punting average.
He earned the Pac-10 Special Teams Player of the Week honors last season against Arizona when he twice pinned the Wildcats deep in their own territory at crucial times during the Bruin victory. In the Silicon Valley Classic against Fresno State, he was selected the Special Teams Player of the Game after averaging 44.3 yards on nine kicks with a long of 60. He placed three inside the 20.
In the 2004 opener against Oklahoma State, Kluwe averaged 37.0 yards on four punts and had just one returned for seven yards. Three of his four punts pinned the Cowboys inside their own 20, including the one-, two- and 18-yard lines.
At Illinois, he averaged 33.5 yards on four punts and had three returned for a total of only 15 yards. He had one punt inside the 20-yard line (17).
Kluwe punted just once against Washington, sending one 44 yards that resulted in a fair catch at the Washington 28-yard line.
Against San Diego State, he averaged 43.7 yards on six punts with a long of 51. He also put one inside the 20-yard line (four-yard line). Only three of the kicks were returned for a total of 25 yards. On the year, Kluwe is averaging 39.2 yards on 15 kicks with five inside the 20-yard line and just two touchbacks.
Redshirt sophomore Justin Medlock, listed on the pre-season Lou Groza Award `Watch List,' made his debut as the team's place kicker last season and was named to The Sporting News Pac-10 All-Freshman team. He supplied all the scoring in the win over Illinois, including a 48-yard field goal. Against California, he kicked what proved to be a game-winning 41-yard field goal in the first overtime.
On the year, he was the team's leading scorer with 68 points and his 5.23 average was 11th in the Pac-10. He ranked fourth in field goals per game (1.08) and in field goal percentage (.737).In the 2004 opener against Oklahoma State, he kicked two field goals and made both PATs for a total of eight points. In the third quarter, he kicked a 52-yard field goal, the longest of his career. It was also tied for the fourth longest in school history and the longest by a Bruin since 1997, when Chris Sailer kicked a school-record 56-yard field goal against Oregon. Against Illinois, he was five of five on PATs but did not attempt a field goal.
At Washington, his 20-yard field goal with 10:35 remaining in the game gave UCLA a six-point lead (37-31) and made the Huskies have to score a touchdown. He also converted four of five PATs, missing for the first time in his career when his second kick bounced off the left upright.
Against San Diego State, he set a career high with four field goals (22, 40, 43, 44) on four attempts, the most by a Bruin since Nate Fikse kicked five against Stanford in 2002. His first two, in the second quarter, gave the Bruins a 20-3 halftime lead. He also converted all three PATs for a career-best 15 points. He was selected Pac-10 Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts.
On the year, he is the team's second-leading scorer with 35 points (8.75) and ranks third in the Pac-10 in kick scoring. He has made all seven of his field goal attempts and 14 of 15 PATs.Medlock is now tied for 10th on UCLA's career field goal list with 21 (tied with Zenon Andrusyshun). Norm Johnson and Efren Herrera are tied for eighth at 24. Medlock's career percentage of .808 is second-only to John Lee's .850 among Bruins with at least 21 career field goals.
RED ZONE -- In the opener against Oklahoma State, UCLA entered the Red Zone four times and scored twice (one rushing touchdown and one field goal) for 10 points. UCLA also had a fumble and an interception.Against Illinois, UCLA scored on three of its four trips into the Red Zone with two passing touchdowns and one rushing touchdown for 21 points. The other trip ended on downs.
At Washington, UCLA scored a rushing touchdown and a field goal on its only two Red Zone trips for 10 points.
Against San Diego State, the Bruin scored a passing touchdown and two field goals on their three Red Zone trips for 13 points.
Thus far in 2004, the Bruins are 10 of 13 (three passing touchdowns, three rushing touchdowns and four field goals) in the Red Zone for 54 points.
Oklahoma State scored on all four of its trips into the Red Zone with three rushing touchdowns and one field goal for 24 points.
Illinois was three of five in the Red Zone (one passing touchdown, one rushing touchdown, one field goal) for 17 points. Its other two trips ended on fourth-down stops by UCLA.
Washington was four of four in the Red Zone (two touchdowns rushing, one touchdown passing, one field goal) for 24 points.
San Diego State converted just two of four Red Zone trips for 10 points (one rushing touchdown, one field goal). The other two trips ended on downs.
In four games, opponents are 13 of 17 (seven rushing touchdowns, two passing touchdowns and four field goals) in the Red Zone for 75 points.
Last year, UCLA was 25 of 37 for 140 points (10 touchdown runs, six touchdown passes, nine field goals) in the Red Zone. The other possessions resulted in three missed field goals, two end of games, three fumbles, three interceptions and once on downs.
Last year, opponents converted 30 of 39 attempts for 164 points (10 touchdown runs, seven touchdown passes, 11 field goals).
TURNOVERS -- UCLA did not force any turnovers in its 2004 opener. Oklahoma State converted four turnovers (two fumbles and two interceptions) into two touchdowns and 14 points.
The Bruins forced three turnovers (two fumble recoveries by Marcus Cassel and an interception by Chris Horton) at Illinois and converted them into 14 points (two touchdowns). UCLA commited just one turnover (interception) against the Illini but it did not result in any points.
At Washington, UCLA did not force any turnovers. The Bruins committed three turnovers (two fumbles, one on a kickoff, and one interception and converted two of them for 10 points (one rushing touchdown and one field goal).
Against San Diego State, UCLA made two interceptions and converted two of them for 10 points (a Spencer Havner touchdown on a 52-yard return and a field goal). UCLA committed just one turnover (an interception) but the Aztecs did not convert.
Thus far in 2004, UCLA has forced five turnovers (two fumbles, three interceptions) and converted them into 24 points (three touchdowns, one field goal). Opponents have received nine turnovers (five interceptions, four fumbles) and converted them into 24 points (three touchdowns, one field goal).
In 2003, UCLA forced 31 turnovers (19 interceptions and 12 fumbles) and converted them into nine touchdowns and six field goals (81 points).
Last year, UCLA commited 32 turnovers (15 interceptions and 17 fumbles) that were converted into 87 points (11 touchdowns and four field goals).
NEXT WEEK -- The Bruins travel to Berkeley on Oct. 16 to face the California Golden Bears. The game will kickoff at 4:00 p.m. and be televised nationally by TBS.
Wed 9/27 | 7:00pm PTLive
Thu 9/28 | 3:30pm PTLive