UCLA Football: Why Josh Rosen Needed a Game Like UNLV


UCLA Football’s starting quarterback Josh Rosen might have had some trouble against UNLV, but it was needed.

Amazing. Incomprehensible. Veteran. Dazzling. UCLA football is in good hands. These are just a few of the words used throughout the Rose Bowl, TV shows and blogosphere after Josh Rosen‘s debut performance of 351 yards and 3 TDs against Virginia.


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It almost seemed surreal. No way UCLA would actually find an elite player that could take them to the promised land. After the initial joy, BBS (Battered Bruin Syndrome for those Bruin fans who weren’t around for the previous decade) began to kick in. This Rosen train would come to a screeching halt and we’d all jump off before the College Football Playoff Station.

Yet it didn’t, it just slowed down to a nice, controlled, reasonable pace.

Sure, Rosen wasn’t as laser precise, and threw an interception, although that was caused to a blown block. But 223 yards,  1 TD and 1 INT is not a shabby stat line.

In reality, it was needed. The first interception needed to be thrown, and those deep balls had to be missed. It is part of the learning process, and isn’t it better that we let the leash go and reap the risks and rewards against an over matched UNLV instead of BYU or Arizona?

Sep 12, 2015; Las Vegas, NV, USA; UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) walks off field after defeating the UNLV Rebels at Sam Boyd Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

As many have said, Rosen could clearly stand in a clean pocket and hit open receivers all day, but the true test would be how he responds to adversity, mentally or physically.

Well, he may not have passed it with flying colors, he certainly earned a passing grade, which has to be somewhat relieving considering he is less than six months removed from his Senior prom.

It’s time to step back on the train, yet expect it to gain speed gradually, with a few speed bumps here and there. But get on board, it’s going to be one hell of a ride.

Next: BYU: The Dirtiest Team in College Football

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