Weekly Answers, Pt. 2

Check out the latest batch of weekly answers…

1) Any idea what happened with Devon Moreland? It seemed he was a UCLA lean. Any chance at Jason Gibson? – Bruin818
The Moreland decision was very confusing to me. SMU? Kinda surprised they still have a program. Gibson said UCLA is in his top five, but there was no order given.

2) In 1998 an 0-2 UCLA team went into a game against #3 rated Texas in Austin as a 10 point underdog and won the game 63-3. UCLA then went on to win 20 games in a row. How was that turnaround accomplished so quickly and why can’t it be repeated? – Anonymous
I’m not saying it can’t be repeated. I’m saying I don’t think it will. Look, UCLA definitely has talent and there is some momentum building from last year. But I need to see a ton more from the offensive line and running game to think they have something special in store. Texas is pretty darn good.

3) Why hasn’t UCLA offered Dillon Van Der Wal? Is he next in line if/when the high-ranked TEs like Seferian-Jenkins and Barnett go elsewhere, or is UCLA just not that impressed with him? – Anonymous
I’m a little surprised they haven’t offered Van Der Wal yet. I think they will, even though they’re feeling good about their chances with Seferian-Jenkins. I know they’re interested in Van Der Wal, but with fewer scholarships available and less of a need at the position, I think it’s just about playing it tight.

4) Lane Kiffin seems to have decided that Max Wittek is the Trojan QB of the future and is passively encouraging Cody Kessler to de-commit. 1. Scout has Kessler ranked higher, how do you personally compare them? 2. Will UCLA have a shot at Kessler? – Anonymous
I like Wittek’s game a little more, but both are very good. I think UCLA will have a shot, but they’re pushing hard for Hundley, and that’s the priority at the moment.

5) Jon- It’s been hard not to notice the lack of overall size of the recent OL commits. While all have got good or more than desirable height, their respective bulk seem to be lacking. Are you aware of any shift in coaching/recruiting philosophies? Does the recent change to the “Revolver” offense necessitate looking perhaps into quicker, more agile OL? Or, forgive me, are we simply stacking recruits at this time for numbers? Thoughts?… – RC3UCLA
I think it’s a little of both, to be honest. Yes, to run more of an option game, or at least to value the running ability of the quarterback and outside game, quicker, lither linemen are preferred. The Broncos are a good example, as they routinely had among the league’s smallest lines but led the league in rushing. Also, I think UCLA views the majority of these early commits as projects, guys they know will have to get much bigger before contributing. Not everyone is an insta-starter like Su’a-Filo or Seantral Henderson.

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  • Tony G

    Bruin 818, it was 1997 when the Bruins started 0-2 and beat Texas 66-3 in Austin to start the 20-game winning streak. That was the year they opened the season with a loss in Pullman where if I remember correctly, we blew a chance to punch the ball in late to take the lead and the Cougars went to the Rose Bowl. Then week 2 was a loss at home to Tennessee who had some senior QB guy named Manning where we staged a 4th Quarter comeback and fell short. It’s amazing how conceivably close the program came to maybe winning 2 consecutive national championships. That Miami game will always be in my nightmares though.

  • Tony G

    My bad, I read the question wrong, sorry Bruin 818, it was an anonymous question

  • tim warren

    At least two big reasons why UCLA in Austin will not have the same result in 10 as back in 97 (it was 97, not 98)—

    (1) Cade McNown was a high impact college quarterback

    (2) Mack Brown was not the Texas coach at the time

    I have a ticket for the Austin game this year. I’m still kicking myself for not going there in 97.

  • Flexmonk

    “It’s been hard not to notice the lack of overall size of the recent OL commits.”
    What?!…Recent OL commits: 6’4.5 265lbs,6’4.5 280lbs, 6’7 270lbs, 6’6 275lbs. Although I may agree they are a leaner stature OL, I would hardly describe them as having a lack of size. Being a fat blob does not make you a good OL. These kids have plenty of development with it being the start of their senior seasons in HS.

  • Fat Blob

    Pardon moi flexmonk, but as a fat blob, I resemble that remark.

  • t

    Mr. Gold has written several times he wants to maintain journalistic integrity and that he is NOT a fan of UCLA. That’s fine. So often, however, Mr. Gold seems to root against UCLA, to over-emphasize their shortcomings, and, at times, to mock the program and its fans. I can appreciate neutrality, but there is an objective and distinct prejudice in the writings and opinions that concerns me.

  • Anonymous

    t,

    I don’t see it, can you point out where you believe Gold stepped over the line in this post?

  • RC3UCLA

    FLEXMONK-

    Regarding our recent OL commits’ “lack of size,” I was simply referring to the recent trend of going after guys 300-320+ lbs. Please also don’t misinterpret my reference to any commit as having a lack of talent. Believe me, I want nothing but the best student-athletes with the best character, drive, and potential as much as anyone else…

  • Bruintx

    I was at that Texas game… it was awesome!! Went out for a nice big Texas steak dinner afterward and I must say, the Texas fans were very nice. Many stopped me at the restaurant to just congratulate me/our team (“y’all whupped us real good”). They are class fans.

  • Stan the Bruin

    JON – The lead story on the blog is now 4 weeks old. Will you ever write a new one so we don’t have to look at it anymore?

    How about something on Darius Bell, you seem to have missed that. Maybe an interview with a player or covering something basketball related.

  • Coach Thom

    Jon…Jon…you’re not following your Broncos closely enough. Coach Josh has changed the blocking scheme from zone to power. He’s brought in the beef and booted the undersized but quick linemen off the team. The small guys just weren’t getting the job done with Moreno and Buckhalter in the backfield. For us Bruins, Coach Rick is still looking at some pretty massive linemen. He ain’t done recruiting yet. The roadgraders are on the way! Any 17 yr old kid who is 6’7″ and carrying 280 lbs can easily bulk up to over 300 by his junior year. I’m more than happy with the way things are going.

  • Boston Bruin

    UCLA vs Texas (Sep 13, 1997)

    While no one expected a 66-3 thumping on 9/13/97, UCLA had two things going for it:

    9 starters and 5 backups were All Conference sometime during their playing days, 6 of whom were also All-Americans and Kris Farris was the Outland Trophy winner.

    The other gift were the turnovers: 4 fumble recoveries and 4 interceptions for UCLA.

    Teams just don’t readily replicate such games.