UCLA Football Under Terry Donahue – 1996-2015

6 of 11

May 26, 2015; Renton, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable gives instructions during an OTA practice at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports


2002 – The Bruins drop games to Colorado and to #7 USC, sending the Trojans to the Rose Bowl where they beat #8 Oklahoma. The #11 Bruins face off against #3 Iowa in the Orange Bowl, earning a 31-20 victory.

2003 – Sophomore Drew Olson takes over at quarterback for the graduating Losman. The Bruins lose on the road early at #1 Oklahoma, and then win out until a three-game losing streak to finish the season: at #12 Washington State, versus Oregon, and at #2 USC. This is the Bruins’ third straight defeat at the hands of the Trojans. An 8-4 record puts unranked UCLA in the Sun Bowl, where they beat Minnesota 24-14. Borges is hired away by Auburn, and UCLA turns to fired Idaho head coach Tom Cable to replace him as the offensive coordinator.

2004 – Cable’s offense is a good fit for the Bruins’ personnel. After dropping the opener against Oklahoma State, the Bruins go on winning streaks of four and five games, separated only by a loss at #8 Cal. UCLA caps off the regular season with a thrilling, 28-27 upset of #1 USC, highlighted by LB Justin London returning a Reggie Bush fumble for the game-deciding touchdown. USC is knocked out of the championship game to the Rose Bowl, in which they hold on and win an impressive shootout against Texas phenom Vince Young. The #8 Bruins face #23 Texas Tech in the Holiday Bowl, falling to the Red Raiders 34-31.

Flirting again with retiring, now at 60 years old, Donahue agrees to stay on at UCLA under the condition that the athletic department build a state-of-the-art practice facility and provide more money for assistant coach salaries.

Next: 2005