Staffer Andy Goodman looks at five of UCLA’s key plays in the Bruins’ win over Nebraska.
1) The first play that comes to mind when I think of the comeback was Paul Perkins 10 yard touchdown run with 57 seconds left in the first half to bring the Bruins within a score of 21-10. This play pumped the adrenaline back into the teams veins. It’s what really got the scoring barrage going. Up to that touchdown run, UCLA was not going anywhere running the ball, but Paul Perkins broke free for pay dirt. Perkins had a very exceptional game, 5 carries for 24 yards and 1 touchdown, but he also caught 1 pass for 20 yards. He was allover the field today, and he was fun to watch.
2) With 6:02 left in the third quarter, Brett Hundley threw and absolute beauty to Shaq Evans who blew by his defender for a 28 yard touchdown pass. This score finally gave UCLA a 24-21 lead. After getting a crucial stop on defense, UCLA’s running game opened up and Brett Hundley was able to create throws because of the job the offensive line did. Shaq Evans is very quick and is always capable of a huge play, it was on full display today as he caught 3 passes for 97 yards and 1 touchdown. That’s 32.3 yards per catch. Evans is really developing before our eyes, he’s always fighting for extra yards, blocking downfield for a tailback and just being a great teammate. I think it’s safe to say that this Bruins team has a ton of chemistry.
3) Phillip Ruhl caught a 12 yard TD pass from non other than Brett Hundley with 3:39 left in the third quarter to give UCLA a 31-21 lead. This is what sealed the deal for the Bruins, they were dominating all aspects of the game in the second half. With the momentum clearly in UCLA’s favor, it was more than over after this catch.
4) With 14:52 left in the 4th quarter, Nebraska had the ball at the UCLA 12 yard line and it seemed as if they were about to punch in for six. As Lee Corso says, “not so fast!” Taylor Martinez handed the ball of to Ameer Abdullah when Anthony Barr came up from behind Abdullah and just annihilated him, forcing him to fumble. Anthony Jefferson recovered the football, ran over to the sideline, handed Jim Mora the ball and gave him a big celebratory hug. Many teammates followed Jefferson as they were all huddled around Mora celebrating the forced turnover. This was a great sight because it showed how much heart UCLA was playing with. Not only that, it showed that they did this for Nick Pasquale. They sure made #36 proud.
5) The entire second half is what decided the outcome of the game. UCLA racked up a mind boggling 228 yards, while holding Nebraska to only 56. Wow, it’s difficult to rack up 228 yards in a single half, but UCLA made it look very easy in the 3rd quarter. Nebraska was totally lost on offense and defense. Whenever it seemed like the Huskers would get a stop, they committed very dumb penalties. Including 2 late hits on quarterback Brett Hundley. The Bruins gained 504 yards while holding Nebraska to 331. That’s very impressive considering the fact that it seemed like the Huskers were going to demolish the Bruins.
What a game this was for you, Nick Pasquale.