UCLA vs. Arizona State: FINAL 45-43

Big statement game by UCLA, finishing off a back-and-forth shootout with a methodical, game-winning drive capped by Ka’imi Fairbairn’s 33-yard field goal.

What was far from a perfect beginning — a coin-toss mishap that gave ASU possession to start both halves, a muffed punt return by Steven Manfro — turned into a signature moment for Brett Hundley at the end of the game. The redshirt freshman overcame a spotty line that allowed five sacks, as well as his own interception earlier, for a clutch performance beyond his years: 4 of 5, for 45 yards. With Arizona State having scored a go-ahead touchdown with 1:33 left, he pulled the Bruins through the small window of hope they had left.

Tailback Johnathan Franklin also rushed for 19 yards on three touches, including the final 7-yard run that set up Fairbairn’s game-winner.

Wide receivers had left plays on the field throughout the game, but UCLA still put up big numbers against what was the Pac-12’s top pass defense at the beginning of the day. The Bruins passed for 274 yards against a unit that hadn’t allowed more than 192 all year.

Franklin, who churned out 164 yards on 26 carries, is 21 yards away from the school career yardage record. Would be a huge surprise if he doesn’t break it next week at the Rose Bowl.

Leave any questions you want to ask Jim Mora in Sunday’s conference call in the comments.

Quick stat breakdown
486 yards (212 rush, 274 pass)
6.2 yards per play
47 rush plays to 31 pass plays
7-13 on third downs
27:06 possession time
96 tackles (8 TFL), 5 sacks (-23 yards), 1 INT

Arizona State
535 yards (220 rush, 315 pass)
5.7 yards per play
59 rush plays to 35 pass plays
7-19 on third downs
32:54 possession time
68 tackles (9 TFL), 5 sacks (-19 yards), 1 INT, 1 FR, 2 BU

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  • Lamar Bryant

    No on Manfro on punts, made the same mistake?

  • Lamar Bryant

    Ka’imi Fairbairn will get some extra peanuts on the way home?

  • Norine Busser

    I know you are new to this beat but UCLA beat Arizona State, not Arizona – check your blog title before posting.

  • Can you ask Mora if he’ll reconsider putting Manfro back there? Nothing against Manfro, but we can’t afford to keep losing TDs (and momentum) on botched returns.

    This *will* lose us the USC or Stanford games if it happens again.

    • ZalphaDog

      Manfro will get better. I agree with you and I screamed at the TV when he dropped another one..but at some point the nerves will wear off and he’ll know what to do. It’s worth the mistakes now, he’s a beast when he has the ball

      • Sure, but when you give up touchdowns like that two games in a row, there needs to be consequences.

  • brewin38

    Jack, can you ask coach Mora what the altercation he had with the ASU player was about? While the team was celebrating the win, you can see him in the face of one of their players.

  • psifi

    Can you ask Mora what they will do to shore up run defense for next week and why they were unable to adjust to the asu screen passes?

  • Snoox

    What happened to Marvray? Why does he have such a diminished role?

  • EncinitasBruin

    Somehow Barkley’s 498 yards today just didn’t seem to stand up to Hundley’s performance, and his ability to put his team in a position to win at the end. Very similar situations at the end, but Hundley simply displayed a cooler head under pressure. Amazing–the undaunted freshman getting it done where the former Heisman “shoe in” and “#1 draft pick” could not.

    As this season wears on, it’s becoming increasingly clear that Mora is outcoaching his cross-town counterpart, and doing more with his talented young bunch of three and four star recruits than Kiffin is with all his five-stars wonders.

    Take Marqise Lee off the field (arguably the best player in college football), and you’re left with one very mediocre football team.

    • GlendoraBruin

      My sentiments exactly!! Great post!

  • Wow, great game. Also, I’m elated you’ve switched to Disqus. Let me know if you have any questions on using it! (I work there)

    Go Bruins!

  • What a stupid rule. UCLA won the toss. Why is there an option to have one team kick off both halves??!

    • BruinBrock

      This issue goes to the misunderstanding of what it is you “win” in the coin toss. It would be incorrect to say you win the decision to either receive in the first half or the second half. What you win is the choice to either kick or receive in the first half, or else to defer to make that choice in the second half. That’s the difference. Locke chose to make the choice in the first half, and he chose to kick (maybe he was just really excited to kick!). What he should have done is defer to make the choice in the second half. Then, as almost always happens, the other team will elect to receive in the first half. It’s not really a stupid rule, because it gives a team more of a choice. There might be a reason for a team choosing to kick instead of receive (say, if your defense scores more often than your offense!). What is stupid, however, is the fact that Locke clearly did not intend that result, and should have been asked by the refs if he understood the import of the decision before committing him to it in the absence of the other team captains.

  • Gary Greenacre

    Question: What does Coach Mora do to get the players to improve in certain areas of sportsmanship and self control? I’m referring to situations like when Evans tossed the football on the ASU player.

    Comment: Obviously, we are seeing a tremendous improvement in all areas and Coach Mora is excellent at owning responsibility for mistakes and also not abandoning players when they don’t perform well. Thank you again, team and staff, for all that hard work.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Jack, as a St. Francis alum and former Golden Knights defensive safety, I have kept a keen eye on the recovery of Dietrich Riley. I know he’s been cleared for non-contact, and is probable for spring ball, but how many years of eligibility does he have left – 1 or 2?

    • Tony

      He should have 2 years left