USC 80, UCLA 61: Thomas Welsh

Thomas Welsh talked about UCLA’s 80-61 loss at USC, one that the Bruins’ opened by falling into a 9-0 hole. According to the sophomore center, the ugly offensive start trickled into the team’s defensive play too.

“That’s not the way it should be,” he said. “You should always be able to play hard on the defensive side of the ball, but we just weren’t making shots. It was downhill from there.”

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USC 80, UCLA 61: Steve Alford

Steve Alford talked after UCLA’s 80-61 loss at USC, the Trojans’ first sweep in the rivalry since 2010. The Bruins shot a season-worst 34.8 percent from the field, including 29.7 percent in the first half.

Asked what changes he’ll consider making between now and March, the third-year coach said: “No idea. We’ll see how practices ago. …

“We are who we are at this time. We’re not going to start doing a 1-3-1 zone and trapping everywhere. We’ve just got to get better at who we are.”

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UCLA assistant Scott White named Pac-12 Recruiter of the Year

UCLA’s Scott White was named Scout.com’s Pac-12 Recruiter of the Year today, joining two other Bruin assistant coaches who have earned that same honor.

Landing five-star recruit Mique Juarez helped push the linebacker coach and special teams coordinator ahead of competitors such as USC’s Tee Martin, Stanford’s Mike Bloomgren, and Washington’s Jimmy Lake — each of whom were honorable mentions. Juarez was the last of four highly touted linebackers to sign with UCLA, with the team having already announced the arrivals of four-star prospects Breland Brandt, Krys Barnes and Lokeni Toailoa.

White first served as a UCLA graduate assistant in 2011 under Rick Neuheisel, and remained on the staff in various capacities after the Bruins hired Jim Mora as they entered the 2012 season. Mora promoted him from defensive quality control to linebackers coach last February.

“We’ve been able to provide some stability here with the staff,” Mora said Wednesday, when speaking generally about his assistants. “When you promote from within, I think that helps you create that feeling of stability. … Quality promotions from within really help us.”

New UCLA quarterbacks coach Marques Tuiasosopo was named the conference’s top recruiter a year ago, when he was at USC, while offensive line coach Adrian Klemm earned the nod in 2013.

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Cathedral defensive end Hunter Echols commits to UCLA

A day after UCLA announced its latest recruiting class, the Bruins added one more prospect to its 2017 haul.

Los Angeles Cathedral defensive lineman Hunter Echols announced his commitment to UCLA on Thursday morning, but added that he will still be taking his visits to other colleges. Scout gives the 6-foot-4, 220-pound recruit a four-star ranking, and considers him the second-best defensive end in California.

The Bruins also have verbal commitments from defensive back Rhedi Short and linebackers Jaquan Henderson and Rahyme Johnson.

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