Spring notes: UCLA offensive line plays round of ‘musical chairs’


– UCLA juggled its offensive line significantly for the first time this spring, with two starters sitting out with minor injuries. Right guard Alex Redmond has been semi-limited the entire month with a cast over his left hand, while left tackle Caleb Benenoch hyperextended his knee early Monday night.

That meant Malcolm Bunche got most of the first-team reps at right tackle, his first time moving away from left guard this spring. The graduate transfer from Miami actually warmed up there early Monday evening before Benenoch was injured, with Scott Quessenberry taking his place at left guard. Head coach Jim Mora had been insistent that Bunche would stay at guard, but at around 6-foot-7, 330 pounds, the Bruins are probably going to at least try him outside some more before the season opener.

“He blocks out the sun,” said linebacker Myles Jack.

Kenny Lacy and Poasi Moala both got first-team reps at left tackle, though the former also got time at guard. Mora didn’t have specific comments about any one lineman, but thought the unit fared well through the “musical chairs.”

At any rate, UCLA has the depth to better weather multiple injuries than it did a few months ago, when it had to start three true freshman for half the season.

– Cornerback Johnny Johnson will be out for the rest of spring after aggravating his shoulder last week. The redshirt freshman injured that shoulder early last fall camp, and missed the entire season after undergoing surgery. Linebacker Isaako Savaiinaea remains day-to-day with his own shoulder injury, and could be back Wednesday.

Linebacker Zach Whitley missed practice after falling down stairs and suffering a bruise. Receiver Eldridge Massington was “dinged” on the head and held out for precautionary reasons.

– Quarterback Brett Hundley said freshman Mossi Johnson is quickly turning into one of his favorite targets: “He has a nasty streak. He’s scrappy. That’s what you want from a receiver, one that’s going to go out and hit a DB in the mouth, then go back and burn a DB the next play.”

One of the stars of spring camp, Johnson showed off that tenacity on Monday night when he tried to block defensive lineman Ellis McCarthy on an eventual touchdown catch by Devin Lucien. Johnson is listed at 6-foot, 185 pounds; McCarthy is 6-foot-5, 330.

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