UCLA Football: The Defense Without Ishmael Adams


With UCLA Football defensive back Ishmael Adams suspended for the first game of the season, we take a look at how the Bruins can compensate in Game 1.

So it looks like UCLA football defensive back Ishmael Adams is out for the season opener after being arrested on robbery charges. So where does that leave the Bruins on the defensive side of the ball?

RELATED: Jim Mora Talks Ishmael Adams Suspension

Well for one thing, you can thank Head Coach Jim Mora and staff for recruiting well in the last few years which will come in handy in this situation. The Bruins are not only deep in the roster but have an immense amount of talent which Defensive Coordinator Tom Bradley has the luxury of moving around in different formations.

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Adams is a cornerback playing the nickel spot, so a few players can be plugged into that position, the only thing the Bruins cannot account for is Adam’s talent, especially his speed.

If Bradley keeps the nickel spot, he can slip in one of the other DBs. A few back-up corners that could be a possibility are Denzel Fisher and John Johnson, yet if Bradley and Defensive Backs Coach Demetrice Martin want to keep those players in their current assignments, there are other possibilities.

One name that has been talked about is freshman Octavius Spencer who looked very good and was pretty consistent in fall camp. With Mora’s pension for playing freshman, there’s a good chance we could see Spencer sooner than later.

If Bradley decides to go with an extra linebacker instead of a nickelback, he can add an extra outside linebacker which Aaron Wallace, Cameron Griffin or Kenny Orjioke can all easily fill.

Of course in losing a fifth defensive back, strategically, the Bruins are going to have to bring more pressure which takes some heat off the secondary, which I am sure was not going to be a problem. As Bradley has shown in camp, he is not afraid to send in the rush and especially when trying to “confuse “the offense.

Either way, the bottom line is that UCLA football should be fine defensively. Though Adams will be needed and missed, there are several situations the Bruins can put themselves in to be successful on the defensive side.

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