Lets start this Halloween Day football roundup with some good news. Christian Taylor is back in the fold. Although he gave some horrific account of what happened to him during the Cal game. Apparently he suffered not one, but two concussions during that game:
"I don't remember exactly what happened, but Bruce (Davis) and Reggie (Carter) hit the back from behind, and I hit him from the front," Taylor said. "When I hit him, it was just like a wall. It was like my helmet verse their three helmets. I kind of fell backwards after the hit.
"I came off the field and I was a little bit out of it, and tried to get myself back together. I sprayed water on my head, my face, and slapped myself around a little bit."
Taylor returned in the final minutes, but was knocked from the game after a second-down hit on Cal tailback Justin Forsett. He was helped to the sideline, and at the end of the game suffered a seizure while sitting on UCLA's bench.
He was then transported to a local hospital.
"I remember going to the sideline," Taylor said. "It's fuzzy. I remember a bunch of people around me and then I remember being at the hospital. I remember fuzzy parts in between. I was told we won at the hospital."
Taylor said he did not tell the training staff about it for fear they would keep him out of the game. He added he was able to regroup partly because UCLA put together a 11-play drive that lasted 5 minutes, 29 seconds.
Sure often our trainers are "clearing" them to play after they get hurt the first time, and often kids like Christian are too anxious to get back in action. But I wonder at what point we need to look at coaching staff and wonder whether they are doing enough to make sure these kids are not suffering any serious injuries.
I mean we hear from Taylor how he was able to sneak back into the action after getting apparently a first concussion. We saw how Bell was allowed to get back into the game, after he was helped off the field. We read the stories about Markey taking pain killing injections (which according to some is seen as a taboo in the sports world) during the Oregon State game. I mean I don’t know. It just seems like something is off here. And if I were a parent of these players, I’d be more than a little concerned about what is going on in this area of Dorrell’s program.
Meanwhile, speaking of injuries Foster has a report on the running back situation. Yeah, Bell is out. But now the Bruins will have to do with Markey, Moline, and Ramirez. All of them are talented backs who any other competent staff would make sure is ready to step and contribute in the next game. So injury to Bell should not serve as an excuse for Dorrell’s inability to produce in the future games. He has more than enough talent to "finish" the season strong with a Pac-10 championship.
Plus here is something that will make you feel better about everything. According to Dorrell once again we are having good practices!
"Tuesdays are usually the hardest day, because that's when you're getting most of the information of the game plan, and it seems like these guys did a nice job of attacking the information and trying to get it to be perfected on the very first rep, instead of the third or fourth rep. I was really encouraged with everyone's focus."
If you want to take in more of those and get a shot of confidence here is a shot courtesy of Grok451:
That just made me feel so much better about our football program. I guess a Happy Halloween to all of us.
Lastly, we will end this note with a link to a story on how UCLA is "working to keep recruiting class intact." The story was written after word got out about Kemonte Bateman decommitting from UCLA to go over to ASU (per Dohn that Bateman saga is not over year). In the mean time, we are also hearing rumors about how other recruits like Hester and Holmes may be on the verge of decommitting as well.
Personally, I don’t give a crap about holding on to our recruiting class. I just don’t care about it. This recruiting class should be the least of our concern. Our paramount concern right now and for rest of this season should be to make sure UCLA gets a brand new football coach, who doesn’t have anything to do with the current regime (which means no 'Mr. Rebound'). Once we get a good, credible coach in place, I am more than confident he will not only be able to hold on to our recruits, but will be able to bring in more great recruiting classes in the coming years. But for now everyone here should drop the concern about holding on to our recruiting class. Our only concern right now should be doing everything we can to get Dorrell and his entire coaching staff out of Westwood by December 3rd. I believe Menelaus will have more to say about this topic later today. Looking forward to reading it.