Notes and quotes: UCLA holds off Arizona in big division win

First, the stories that appear in today’s edition of the Los Angeles Daily News:
– UCLA breaks its four-game losing streak in Tucson with a superlative two-way effort from freshman Myles Jack.
– Columnist Vinny Bonsignore, with a look at quarterback Brett Hundley’s performance.

More notes and quotes from the wild 31-26 win at Arizona Stadium, which kept the Bruins in control of their own postseason destiny:

– A lot has been and will be written about Jack, so for now, let’s stick with a roundup of comments from coaches and teammates.

Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez had high praise too: “The guy is a great athlete, a great player. He’ll be a first-round pick as a linebacker. We tried to recruit him as a running back.” Continue reading

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At a glance: No. 16 UCLA at Arizona

No. 16 UCLA (6-2, 3-2 Pac-12) vs. Arizona (6-2, 3-2)
Location:
Arizona Stadium, Nov. 9, 7 p.m. PT
TV: ESPN (Joe Tessitore, Matt Millen, Maria Taylor)
Radio: 570 AM (Chris Roberts, Matt Stevens, Wayne Cook)

Last meeting: UCLA crushed Arizona 66-10, the most lopsided win in the all-time series. Running back Johnathan Franklin set the school’s career rushing mark with a 37-yard touchdown in the first quarter, and he Bruins’ led 42-3 at the half.

Key storylines: The Bruins haven’t won in Tucson since 2003, when they rallied back from an 11-point halftime deficit to win 24-21. Also, this happened the last time they went to the Zona Zoo. Continue reading

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Anthony Barr surprised Buffs quarterback pushed him

For the first time in his defensive career, UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr went a full game without recording a tackle for loss.

He still made sure Colorado remembered him. In the fourth quarter of the Bruin’s 45-23 win over the Buffs, the All-American crushed true freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau at around midfield, drawing a 14-yard penalty for roughing the passer.

After popping back up, Liufau got in Barr’s face and shoved him back, just one of several chippy moments between the Bruins and the Buffs.

However, Liufau is listed at 6-foot-4, 215 pounds. Barr is listed at 6-foot-4, 245 — and said during the summer that he was up to 255. On the next play, the latter hit the former again, this time incurring a 15-yard penalty.

Asked how many quarterbacks had ever pushed him before, Barr said: “Not many. Not many. That was also a first.”

What words did they exchange? “Nothing nice.” Continue reading

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Notes and quotes: UCLA 45, Colorado 23

– UCLA allowed Colorado a whopping 26 first downs, seven of which came on penalties. The Buffs’ highest first-down total this season prior to Saturday were their 24 in a season-opening win over Colorado State. Just three of those came on penalties.

The Bruins’ clearly aren’t going to shake their problem with flags. They had 11 for 122 yards, just 17 yards shy of their rushing total. It was the most yards UCLA has lost on penalties since giving away 138 against New Mexico State.

– Speaking of flags, Anthony Barr got a couple of roughing-the-passer penalties late in the game. Quarterback Sefo Liufau even pushed Barr in the chest after the first one. Either way, he looked pretty poised in the pocket for a true freshman.

– Devin Lucien wasn’t exactly happy with the win. The redshirt sophomore wasn’t among the eight receivers who caught a ball Saturday night, his second straight contest going unnoticed on the box score. He has just nine catches on the season, and no more than two in any single game.

He took to Twitter last night to vent: Continue reading

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UCLA shakes slow start to beat Buffaloes 45-23

Despite letting Colorado stick around for the better part of the first half, UCLA finally started taking some shots downfield for its third conference win.

Our coverage from Saturday night’s 45-23 decision, running in the Sunday edition of the Los Angeles Daily News and other LANG papers:

– My story on Brett Hundley’s good-not-great showing against Colorado.
– Vinny Bonsignore called the Colorado game a trap for UCLA, one it wiggled out of following hyped-up visits to Stanford and Oregon.
– Jill Painter pointed out UCLA’s seven first-half penalties, leading Jim Mora to indirectly call her a “Debbie Downer.”
– A notebook on UCLA’s success in using true freshmen, including Cameron Judge’s big forced fumble.

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UCLA 45, Colorado 23: Quarterback Brett Hundley


UCLA coach Jim Mora said after his team’s 45-23 win that quarterback Brett Hundley looked less burdened against Colorado, throwing for 273 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The redshirt sophomore denied feeling weighed down by his struggles last month.

“To be honest, I don’t really feel a burden or loss of confidence with what happened these past two weeks,” he said. “Two weeks isn’t going to kill somebody. … If it does, you’re not really playing the game to love the game.”

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