UCLA starts training camp in San Bernardino on Aug. 4

As has become tradition under head coach Jim Mora, UCLA will hold its preseason training camp in the isolation and heat of the Inland Empire.

The Bruins will start practicing at Cal State San Bernardino on Aug. 4 at 3 p.m., and continue every day except Sundays through Aug. 16. They will then return to their Westwood campus for another week of practices.

UCLA football training camp schedule

Monday, August 4 – Practice #1, 3:00 p.m.
Tuesday, August 5 – Practice #2, 3:00 p.m.
Wednesday, August 6 – Practice #3, 3:00 p.m.
Thursday, August 7 – Practice #4, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, August 8 – Practice #5, 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, August 9 – Practice #6, 8:30 a.m.
Saturday, August 9 – Practice #7, 7:00 p.m. Continue reading

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Four-star running back T.J. Simmons commits to UCLA

For the first time in years, UCLA could sign multiple running backs to the same recruiting class.

Four-star running back T.J. Simmons announced his commitment to the Bruins on Monday, choosing them over Florida, Ohio State and LSU. Rivals.com ranks him as the 21st-best 2015 prospect at his position.

The 6-foot, 195-pound Lakeland, Fla., native joins 5-foot-10, 216-pound Bolu Olorunfunmi — a three-star recruit — in UCLA’s 2015 class. If both sign letters of intent next February, their arrival will mark the first time since 2010 that the program added two tailbacks at once.

That year, Malcolm Jones and Jordon James became Bruins. The former had a unspectacular UCLA career, while the latter will likely be the team’s lead back this fall.

UCLA technically signed Paul Perkins and Fabian Moreau in 2012, but the latter quickly converted to cornerback and could be an all-conference talent there.

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Pac-12 links: Arizona linebacker cheers on former teammate in World Cup

» As the World Cup rolls on, a Arizona linebacker cheers on a former teammate who has since become a reserve defender on the U.S. national team.

» Former Washington coach Jim Lambright was arrested for domestic violence for allegedly assaulting his granddaughter. His wife said he is suffering from dementia.

» As a result of Oregon’s poorly handled sexual assault investigation, everybody lost.

» Going to the Hawaii Bowl cost Oregon State $170,000, but athletic director Bob de Carolis said the deficit could have been worse. Continue reading

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Jim Mora lists Washington home for $3.15 million

Some six months after turning down a chance to become Washington’s head coach, Jim Mora severed another tie with his home state.

Heading into his third season at UCLA, Mora has listed his Washington for $3.149 million according to the LA Times. The two-story, six-bedroom house in Yarrow Point is listed on Realtor.com as having been built in 1918 and renovated in 2008, and comes complete with a theater room, gaming center, seven built-in flatscreen TVs, a wet bar, and an artist studio. The master suite also opens up to a deck with lake views.

Still, it’s hardly the highest-priced property in the neighborhood. According to Realtor.com, three homes in the area have recently sold for between $4.35 million to $6.4 million. Several others are listed for more than $3.9 million, including a pair of three-bedroom houses.

Mora could probably buy up one of those too if he wanted. Currently living in Manhattan Beach, he is slated to earn $3.25 million in base salary this year, as well as up to $930,000 in performance bonuses.

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Pac-12 links: Conference only distributes 68 percent of revenue back to members

» The Pac-12′s record $334 million in revenue in 2012-13 led all conferences, but the league only returned 68.3 percent of that back to its members. Every other Big Five conference returned at least 90 percent.

Pac-12 CFO Ron McQuate told CBS that the disparity is due to the conference’s costs in operating its own network, rather than a media partnership.

» Oregon State has officially hired former Cal State LA head coach Stephen Thompson as an assistant. Thompson, who played for Syracuse, faced UCLA coach Steve Alford during Indiana’s 74-73 national title game victory in 1987.

» Recovering from a recent hip surgery, Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said recent transfers out of the program aren’t indicative of a “smoking gun.” Continue reading

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UCLA’s all-time leading rusher Johnathan Franklin forced to retire after neck injury

At 24 years old, Johnathan Franklin’s career is already over.

UCLA’s all-time leading rusher will retire from the NFL after just one season, his career ended by a neck injury that sidelined him in Week 12 last year. The 5-foot-11 back was drafted in the fourth round in 2013 — lower than both he and many analysts expected — but was nonetheless overjoyed to head to the Green Bay Packers.

However, Franklin only carried the ball 19 times for a touchdown and 107 yards — 103 of which came in a Sept. 22 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. Continue reading

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Seali’i Epenesa signs with New England Patriots as final roster addition

One more Bruin is keeping his NFL dream alive.

Nose tackle Seali’i Epenesa wasn’t among the five UCLA players drafted last month, but signed with the New England Patriots as its 90th roster addition. The 6-foot-1, 310-pound lineman started 17 games over his last two seasons in Los Angeles, but was beaten out late last fall by true freshman Kenny Clark.

Epenesa recorded 16 tackles as a senior, as well as the lone sack of his career.

NFL teams cut their rosters to 75 players after the third preseason weekend, and to the regular-season maximum of 53 shortly after that.

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Brett Hundley, Eric Kendricks to represent UCLA at Pac-12 Media Days

Junior quarterback Brett Hundley and senior linebacker Eric Kendricks will represent UCLA at Pac-12 Media Days in late July, alongside Bruins head coach Jim Mora.

The event will be held at Paramount Studios in Hollywood on July 23 and 24, expanding to two days for the first time. UCLA will be available to most media on latter of the two days, taking the podium at 10:50 a.m.

You can see the full Pac-12 Media Days schedule below. Continue reading

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UCLA listed as early favorite in all but one game in 2014

Heading into a season with national title hopes, UCLA has Las Vegas on its side.

The Golden Nugget released lines this week for 200 “Games of the Year” and have the Bruins as favorites in eight of the nine games featured. Oregon is a 3-point favorite at the Rose Bowl on Oct. 11, after romping to a 42-12 win over UCLA last season in Eugene.

The downtown Vegas casino gave UCLA narrow edges over Washington (-3.5), USC (-4.5) and Stanford (-3), but also made the team a three-touchdown favorite in the season opener at Virginia and again on Oct. 18 at Cal.

Odds weren’t listed for games against Memphis, Utah and Colorado — teams that combined for a 12-24 record last season.

The full set of early lines for UCLA: Continue reading

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Pac-12 links: O’Bannon trial continues with testimony from economics professor

» O’Bannon v. NCAA rolled on through Tuesday with testimony from Roger Noll, a Stanford professor emeritus of economics. Noll, who calls the NCAA a ‘cartel’, has testified for seven-and-a-half hours through the first two days and will take the stand again Wednesday.

Former UCLA star Ed O’Bannon took the stand on Monday.

» Jeremy Bloom, a two-time Olympic skier and former Colorado All-American receiver, shared his thoughts on the NCAA. Bloom was declared ineligible for football in 2004 due to endorsements he received as a pro skier, but was still taken in the fifth round of the NFL draft.

» Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez said eliminating National Signing Day could make sense. Continue reading

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