Bruins back in Top 25

UCLA’s thrilling comeback win over ASU yesterday afternoon bumped the Bruins back into the AP poll. Now ranked at No. 25, Jim Mora’s squad has ranked teams slated for three of its remaining four games. As of now, it looks unlikely that Brett Hundley and company will sweep the rest of the way, but it’s not completely impossible either.

Here’s a quick look at the remainder of the schedule:

Nov. 3 vs. No. 24 Arizona
The Wildcats might be the most dangerous 5-3 team in the country. But Matt Scott, named Walter Camp Offensive Player of the Week, may sit out with a concussion. This might be the most interesting game in the conference next week.

Nov. 10 at Washington State
Can’t imagine the Bruins losing in Pullman, but it could shape up to be a bit of a trap game. Mike Leach hasn’t done anything to revive the moribund program, but a team that could go winless in conference play only lost to Stanford by a touchdown.

Nov. 17 vs. No. 18 USC
Clearly overrated by most of the media (including myself), the Trojans have been stunningly inconsistent. Unless USC makes a dramatic turnaround, there’s little intrigue left in its date with Oregon. UCLA’s secondary has been suspect; this could be a close one that the Trojans eke out.

Nov. 24 vs. No. 15 Stanford
Josh Nunes isn’t a very good quarterback, but the Cardinal does have a very good defense. A unit that produced 10 sacks at Wazzou will likely exploit UCLA’s young offensive line.

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  • psifi

    There are no sure things for any team in the country except maybe those ranked 1through 5 in the polls. The Bruins can look great one second and terrible the next so they would be wise to treat every game as a huge challenge and play accordingly. Arizona has a history of killing the Bruins so we better get ready…

  • James Katt

    The Bruins need to drink their Starbucks or Redbull before starting games. They have to be mentally ready and sharp – not half-asleep as when they lost to Cal.

    I like to see the Bruins being so aggressive, they injure opposing players legally.

  • http://www.facebook.com/davidsimshomes David Jon Sims

    Jack, I like your writing style.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Opening line predictions:

    UCLA -3 v Arizona

    Oregon -16 v USC

    • EncinitasBruin

      Well, UCLA opened as 3-point favorites, but Oregon opened at -6, then promptly went to -7.

    • GoJoeBruinUCLA

      How the hell we are 3-point favorites is beyond me. UA is damn good; I expect a UCLA loss here.

      • roadrunner

        A few reasons: they are 8-2 in the RB going back to beginning of last season; they are coming off their biggest road win in more than five years; they have a better record; and it’s homecoming. All those things don’t guarantee a win, and I believe Az is the most dangerous team right now in the Pac-12, with the best QB. Should be a barn-burner.

        • GoJoeBruinUCLA

          Arizona’s three losses shouldn’t be counted against them: Those were to teams with a combined 20-3 record. Perhaps Arizona struggles at the Rose, but it seems to be a different team. God, this game scares me.

          • roadrunner

            I hear you, brother. This game scares me too. We have lost 5 games in a row to UofA!

          • GoJoeBruinUCLA

            Disgusting. And this game is so important since last year, the UA game was *the* low point of the season and probably of the past decade. Gotta beat these guys.

  • http://twitter.com/c2blum c2blum

    i believe UCLA has a good chance to win 3 of 4, definitely 2 of 4 which would be a 9-3 or 8-4 rising sun. Next week #25 vs. #24, too bad pac12-comcast will probably blackout chicagoland… go bruins!

  • michael hieda

    Comments for Coach Mora if you have a chance: Great win! Question on linebacker positions, what was the reason for switching Barr to the left side and Holmes to the right at the start and on occasion throughout the game? Was it to take advantage of Barr’s pass coverage strengths with Arizona State being pass dominant to their right side? Just my opinion but it seemed from past games in comparison that Barr is more effective and instinctive on pass rushes from his usual left side. BTW Devin Fuller looked great with his moves and hands … hoping he will become one of our “go to” receivers.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Interestingly, USC has not beaten a winning team all year. USC’s wins are against teams who collectively are 16-32 (.333), and their remaining opponents are 27-5 (.843), including upbeaten #2 Oregon and unbeaten #5 ND.

    In contrast, UCLA’s wins are against teams that are collectively 22-27 (.448), including quality wins against #16 Nebraska, and 5-3 ASU, and whose remaining opponents are 19-13 (.593).

    So which team has the better chance of running the table?

  • DeShaun Son

    Wow, if the Bruins can win 3 out of 4. They can end up being 9-3. Not a bad first season for Jim Mora & Co. This would do great for the Bruins. Especially, in the recruiting game. 10-2 could be magical in Westwood as well. Pac 12 South Champsionship. Top 10 raking going into The Pac 12 championship game. Sounds too good to be true but first thing first. Let’s beat a hot Arizona team next week at the Rose Bowl. Then…. We’ll talk!

  • 92104bruinfan

    Unless we get to the Pac 12 title game against the Ducks, AZ will be the most severe test the Bruin D faces all season though the Mildcats having Scott out helps quite a bit. The Cal crap-the-bed performance aside, it’s hard for most “reasonable” UCLA fans and alums to not be happy with what the Bruins have done this season so far.

    On another note, good to have you aboard Jack. Oh and please tell Sam Strong of the Daily Bruin that he’s way too young to be in the running for the Nick Canepa Grumpy Old Man Columnist Award.

  • EncinitasBruin

    UofA might be the biggest game UCLA has played since our dynasty-ending loss to Miami in ’98. An exaggeration? Maybe. But consider these points:
    1. We are coming off our best conference road win in half a decade, at least.
    2. If we can beat a dangerous UofA team at home, it will be the best back-to-back wins we’ve had in years.
    3. We have lost 5 in a row to UofA. (You read that correctly: 5)
    4. If we beat UofA, we have a good chance of facing USC at home with an 8-2 record (barring a major mental lapse against struggling WSU).
    5. If we beat UofA, and USC loses to Oregon (opening line was Oregon and 6, but it’s drifted to 8), a win over USC would give us 2 conf losses to USC’s 4. Even a loss to Stanford wouldn’t automatically eliminate us as potential South Division champions. Why? UofA is 2-3 in conference, and ASU, the only other South team in contention, loses to us in a head-to-head.

  • GoJoeBruinUCLA

    Sidenote: So glad the LA Daily News implemented Disqus into its platform and made the move to WordPress. They were using some shit in the 1990s, I swear.

  • The Big Woof!

    The 3 point favorite was a prediction, not a fact. According to my paper, there is no line yet due to not knowing if Matt Scott will play or not.

    • EncinitasBruin

      Yes, but the prediction was accurate: UCLA is a three point favorite now.

      • The Big Woof!

        Good guess and semi-accurate, the opening line was 1.5 points. Let’s see what happens during the week as the odds makers react to the probable Ariz. QB.

        • EncinitasBruin

          Actually, the opening line was 3, if you go by Vegas odds, as reported on ESPN and in USA Today. it’s now 3.5.

          • The Big Woof!

            The SJ Merc News shows opening at 1.5 and now 3. They had it as “off” until this morning – I guess their odds coverage is as bad as their boxing and some of the rest of their lacking sports coverage.

          • EncinitasBruin

            LOL. The main thing is that they take care of business and win, whether it’s by 3, 13, or 30!