Neuheisel On: UCLA

On playing so many freshmen:
“Part of it out of necessity and part of it is there are kids who are ready to play. I had some true freshman play in my time at both Washington and Colorado. But I’ve never had this many. That is a sign of two things; our depth is still an issue and also the quality of our recruiting class.”

On Rahim Moore:
“Rahim is one of those guys who is just gifted with a great personality. He’s one of the jokesters on the team. He has a smile on his face 24/7. He loves football and being a student. There’s no one who gets more out of life than Rahim Moore.”

On the coaching staff being perfectionists:
“When you get a chance to look at tape, there are things you can be better at. Tim Hundley, who coaches the safeties, I know while congratulating him on the award, also said that we have to put that aside for a second and look at all these things we can improve upon. Truthfully, that can be said about every kid in the program.”

On what he saw from UCLA:
“We’ve got a little bit more ability to be explosive. We’ve got some kids in the program who are going to make some big plays. Guys like Johnathan Franklin, Kevin Prince, even Richard Brehaut, who only threw two passes; we’ve got the chance to get the balls down the field. A year ago, that was all but impossible.
Now we have to just go down into being a more consistent offense.”

On his players not psyching themselves out:
“What they don’t know won’t hurt them. I thought long and hard about it during the offseason, and I don’t think you hide anything. We’re going into one of the great venues of college football. When you list the top 5 or top 10, its going to be on it. The crowd they get on a weekly basis, they’ll all be in orange, it’s going to be a vertical type of stadium, and it’s what you dream about when you’re a kid. We have to soak that up for a brief time, and then we have to forget about it and pay attention to what’s happening between the lines.”

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  • Keenan

    Please ask Coach Neuheisel these two questions and post the answers. Thanks very much.

    1. Why did he burn Breheut’s (sp.?) redshirt? With Breheut being a true freshman and Prince a redshirt freshman, seems like UCLA will have two good QB’s and one of them will never play b/c they will sit behind the other guy who is in the same class. Seems like he should have redshirted him, and he would still have Prince, Craft and Crissman.

    2. Why did he blow Thigpen’s redshirt? That seems like a total waste considering the talent and depth at RB right now, why not save this guy for the future and redshirt him this season?

    If you could find out those two things and let us know, that would be very much appreciated.

  • Rico Bruin

    Jon have you heard anything about this years road unis??
    There has been some talk that we went back to the dark blue. That would be cool, I think it is a far better uni.

    Thanks

  • Everlong Bruin

    I was questioning RN’s use of Brehaut as well. I’m sure Rick/Norm have their reasons. A couple possible reasons….

    1) Uncertainty at the top. They were still uncertain who would perform better under game time situations. It’s hard because chances are, Prince will at least be “okay” this season as long as he doesn’t get injured and the line stays intact. If that’s the case, I doubt he would be pulled for Craft. With both Brehaut & Prince taking snaps, they will have a better idea who plays better in a live game (kind of like Riley and Longshore for Cal).

    2) We have enough talent to do this. With improved recruiting, you might as well play your players and see who is really better. SUC has players waiting in line. Sanchez plays 1 full season and he can be starting in the NFL this year. If UCLA can get to that point (slowly but surely), Rick doesn’t need to save redshirts. We have 4-star Nottingham coming in next year and I’m sure we’re still trying to recruit some other high profile QB’s.

    The QB position is definitely puzzling considering Prince was named starter & Craft #2. That told me that Brehaut was redshirting which is obviuosly not the case now. Then after Prince goes down, Craft gets put in for a hand-off without a chance to pass.

    - Not sure about Thigpen. I just remember Neu saying that Thigpen is good enough to play, period. Maybe in special teams if not at RB.

    All I know is that it’s good to have options. I still can’t believe we were down to 3rd string at QB, RB & OL last year because of injuries. May the injury bug leave Westwood and find a better home in south central.

    It would be interesting to see what Rick & Norm have to say although I’m sure they’ll just give a generic let them play answer.

  • SDBRUIN

    Keenan and Everlong Bruin took the words right out of my mouth. So, I’ll just say that I don’t understand the logic either (on playing Brehaut especially). Okay, Craft is not going to win any QB Efficiency Rating awards, but my gosh, the kid had no (NO!) blocking last year. Even if Prince goes down, there’s still KC and NC. Why throw in RB?

    A really hard decision to justify on Brehaut, IMHO.