About last night: Links to recap UCLA’s 30-27 win over Cal

UCLA players mob kicker JJ Molson #17 after he hit a field goal with seconds left in their game against Cal at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA., Friday, Nov 24, 2017. UCLA defeated Cal 30-27. (Photo by Hans Gutknecht, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)

UCLA grabbed two victories this weekend with a 30-27 win against Cal on Friday to earn bowl eligibility followed by inking Chip Kelly to a five-year, $23.3 million deal Saturday.

A 37-yard field goal from J.J. Molson sealed the on-field win for the Bruins (6-6, 4-5 Pac-12) as they secured their first undefeated home season since 2005.

“Our whole football operations from the trainers to the doctors from the equipment managers to the coaching staff to the training staff to the strength staff, to the nutritionists are all so appreciative for this opportunity,” interim head coach Jedd Fisch said. “We are obviously excited as a program.”

Fisch and the current staff are expected to stay on to guide the Bruins through their bowl game next month.

Quarterback Josh Rosen was injured in the first half after getting slammed to the field on a sack. He passed for 202 yards and two touchdowns before making way for Devon Modster, who finished with 191 yards on 14-for-18 passing. The redshirt freshman who just started throwing footballs again this week after breaking his thumb three weeks ago led the Bruins on a game-winning drive with 2:22 left to set up Molson’s game-winning field goal with eight seconds left.

Jordan Lasley had another career-high with 227 receiving yards on 12 catches with one touchdown.

Links to recap the game:

Not a full review, but some quick leftover thoughts/notes from the game:

  • Some redshirt juniors, including Jordan Lasley, Adarius Pickett and Kolton Miller, were included in the pregame senior night festivities. It does not necessarily mean they are leaving. Lasley explained that Jedd Fisch said a few hours before the game that all fourth- and fifth-year players would be included in the pregame ceremony, even if they still have eligibility. It was just something that happened at every other college stop Fisch had made, Lasley said. Lasley seemed confused by it and said he’s still evaluating whether he would want to return. He said the head coaching hire will factor into that decision.
  • The defense won the game in the red zone, holding Cal to just two touchdowns in seven red zone trips. The one that impressed me the most was when Cal had first-and-goal from the UCLA 4-yard line in the fourth quarter. The secondary came up big on that drive. Nate Meadors started it off with this beautiful tackle on first down to stop Patrick Laird. Jaleel Wadood stopped Laird 1 yard short on second-and-goal and Mossi Johnson defended the pass on third down to force an incompletion and field goal attempt. That’s likely not a stop that the UCLA defense would have made earlier this year.
  • Bolu Olorunfunmi and Soso Jamabo were both hurt during the game. Olorunfunmi turned his ankle, likely re-aggravating an injury he picked up against USC. Jamabo got hurt after he was on the receiving end of a hit that earned a targeting call. Jalen Starks was not dressed for the game.
    • Brandon Stephens was the last running back standing and had career highs in carries (20) and rushing yards (83) with his first career touchdown.
  • True freshmen Mo Osling III and Rahyme Johnson got significant playing time on defense for the first times of their careers. Osling had three tackles and a pass breakup in the end zone that prevented a touchdown. Johnson also had three tackles.
  • Austin Roberts, DeChaun Holiday and Krys Barnes also did not dress for the game.