UCLA Football moved to 8-2 after downing Washington 41-31 in the Rose Bowl. UCLA’s true freshman linebacker Miles Jack, who burst onto the offensive scene last week against Arizona, became only the 13th player in UCLA history — and first since Maurice Jones-Drew — to rack up four touchdowns in a game. As Bruin fans are starting to realize, defense is the new offense, and this was further shown as Cassius Marsh (Yes, the defensive end), caught a touchdown pass. So if defense is the new offense, is offense the new defense? Nope, and the UCLA defense was a roller coaster ride tonight.
It was obscene to see the Bruins secondary get blasted and outrun by any Husky on the field, excluding their best player. So focused on stopping Bishop Sankey, who is certianly one of the best backs in the nation, allowed Washington to go deep time and time agian. A weak showing deep was made up for by two forced turnovers early and four in all, and luckily for the Bruins sake, after putting the ball on the ground four times, only two were picked up by the visitors. Nonetheless, they did stop, or at least slow Bishop Sankey. Sankey was averaging nealy 135 rushing yards per game, and the Bruins held him to 91 on 27 carries. Thats a 3.4 average. Just to give some perspective, Sankey averaged 4.6 per carry against Stanford, and 6.0 against Oregon, racking up 125 and 167 yards respectivley.
Troublesome for the Bruins going forward, though, will be depth at running back. It’s not smart to give Myles Jack more than five or so carries a game as it not only wears him down, but puts him at higher risk of injury. Over the course of the season, UCLA has seen the likes of Malcolm Jones (Tonight), Jordon James, Damien Thigpen, and Paul Perkins (Tonight) maintain some form of injury. For clarity, Perkins was seemingly limping and in pain, but never pulled for injury reasons — as far as was clear. Once a run strong team, the Bruins are going to need this extra day to recover as they take on ASU in what could be a fateful matchup next Saturday in the Rose Bowl.
The PAC-12 South picture could get shaken up tomorrow, so be sure to check back for an analysis of how things can play out.