Sunday, 24 September 2017 16:03

Bruins Plowed Over On the Farm

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Jamabo S SUAnd the beat goes on. While the Bruins gave a valiant effort until miscues and penalties became too much to overcome. As night turns into day and the sun sets in the West, Stanford (2-2, 1-1) beat UCLA (2-2, 0-1) for the tenth time in a row, in a game that was closer than the 58-34 score would indicate.

In games where there were more flags flying than the 4th of July, the Bruins were flagged 13 times for 132 yards and the Cardinal were called for 12 penalties for 86 yards. There were questionable calls against both teams but it seemed the penalties tilted negatively against UCLA.

Even with all the flags, the Bruins had their chances, but couldn’t get out of their own way. UCLA’s penalties killed drives and kept drives going for Stanford and it that wasn’t bad enough the Bruins turned the ball over four times, dropped a touchdown pass that was followed up with a blocked field goal.

You’re not going to win many football games when you turn the ball over four times, don’t make plays that are makeable, and are penalized for over 100-yards.

If this season gets salvaged, it will happen because the Bruins finally figured out how to defend against the run. Once again the Bruins were gashed for big plays defending the running game.

The Bruins gave up 405 net rushing yards. The Cardinal average 9.0 yards per carry. That is not winning defense said Captain Obvious. The Bruins defense gave up three big rushing plays.

Of course, you would expect that Cardinal sensational junior running back, Bryce Love, would be the owner of one of the big plays. He was. Love’s 69-yard jaunt was one of the daggers to the heart.

Another junior running back, Cameron Scarlett, shredded the Bruin defense for a 62-yard run and freshman, running back/receiver Connor Weddington took a reverse for 43-yards. Those three plays accounted for 174 out of the 405 net rushing yards. It’s a recurring problem that has to be addressed.

The Bruins offense while improving on a weekly basis has to limit penalties. They had bone-crushing drive killing penalties and turnovers that just stilted the offense.

On the good, junior running back Soso Jamabo, rushed for 100 yards. Jamabo is the first Bruin since 2015 to accomplish that feat.

UCLA had two receivers who went over the century mark in receiving yards. Jordan Lasley had career highs in receptions with 11 and in receiving yards with 158 and scored one touchdown. Caleb Wilson added 11 catches for 145 yards.

Quarterback Josh Rosen had an outstanding night throwing for 480 yards, three touchdowns, and two interceptions. On Rosen’s two interceptions, one was a tip-off a receiver’s hands and the other was where the quarterback and the receiver were not on the same page.

In total, the Bruins had 595 offensive yards, averaging 7.9 yards per play. Stanford had 553 offensive yards and averaged 8.0 yards per play. The game was closer than the scoreboard indicated, but Stanford did to the Bruins what they always seem to do, find a way to win.

Now it’s back to the drawing board for Jim Mora and his staff. The challenge is to fix the run defense and offensively, cut down on the turnovers and penalties. There is still a lot of season yet to played and a turnaround is possible, but for that to happen UCLA has some cleaning up to do.

The Bruins have Colorado coming to the Rose Bowl on September 30 for a 7:30 PM PST scheduled kickoff.

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