Here are three burning questions about the UCLA Football team as they get set to take on the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors in their second taken of the season.
After a great comeback against Texas A&M, this week the UCLA Football (1-0) team welcomes the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (2-0) to The Rose Bowl. Last week Hawaii got off to slow start against Western Carolina before putting the Catamounts away in the second half.
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Hopefully the Bruins can come out and play a complete game against the Rainbow Warriors so UCLA fans won’t once again chew their nails down to the quick. Here are three questions I’m asking before the Bruins take on Hawaii.
1. Can the Bruins play two complete halves against Hawaii?
Last week UCLA looked like two totally different football teams. In the first half, they couldn’t stop the Aggies on the ground and A&M racked up 286 first half rushing yards. With the ball, UCLA couldn’t do much either gaining only 152 total yards in the first half.
In the second half, those numbers were completely reversed with Josh Rosen throwing for 377 yards while the Bruins’ defense held A&M to just 119 total yards.
Hawaii shouldn’t be as tough an opponent as A&M (although Hawaii can be really physical) but letting a team hang around is a sure way to give them confidence.
A strong start by Josh Rosen and Co. and it will be the Bruins who will have the confidence and remove any thoughts of victory from the Hawaii players. But keeping their foot on the gas throughout the entire game is something I’d like to see.
2. Will UCLA be able to stop Hawaii’s rushing attack?
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I know the Catamounts of Western Carolina are not the toughest opponents but those are still good numbers. His game wasn’t a fluke either as last year the redshirt senior had a great season rushing for 1006 yards.
Against Western Carolina, Hawaii had just one receiver with more than three catches (Dylan Collie with seven) so it may be safe to say that the Rainbow Warriors will stick mainly with a ground attack.
If the Bruins stuff the box and force Hawaii’s quarterback Dru Brown to pass the ball, they may stop the run by inviting Hawaii to pass.
3. Will the Bruins show a running game?
Last week the Bruins ran the ball just 19 times for 84 yards. (Yes, that’s the exact horrible number they averaged last year) In their defense, Rosen had to throw the ball on almost every play in the second half to get them back in the game.
Jamabo ended up with 46 yards while Olorunfunmi had 31 yards. The Bruins may want to establish the run early in the game, especially against a team that gave up 212 rushing yards to an FCS Western Carolina team.
If the Bruins take care of business and build a big lead, they may be handing the ball off a lot during the second half. They could use this time to once again attempt to find someone who wants to be the number one running back.