I don't know exactly how to put into words what I saw tonight so I'll just try. We made a huge statement tonight at the Rose Bowl. There were 68,000+ there and people were ready to see something from this team, hungry for change. The team and the coaches delivered big time. I haven't felt this good about a UCLA football game in years, since the Cade days with Skip Hicks and even then I wasn't cheering like I did tonight because I was busy chasing girls. Our defense had a great game. In fact I looked to my friend in the second half when it was 14-10 and said "God it's a good thing it's only 14-10 after the first half picks." Brian Price and Brigham Harwell had unbelievable games; Price is a monster; he's so valuable. Our front 7 just played lights out defense, putting pressure on the quarterback when we needed it. The dbs played great pass coverage. They stayed in the game the whole time. There were a few breakdowns and Tennessee showed why they won their side of the SEC last year but we hung tough.
I haven't seen the stats but I doubt UT got much on the run. They didn't play that badly, we just played well; we played resilient, tough football. You could just see the change in the team and it started from the top. Rick commanded that sideline and had a presence. He was involved during time outs, made the great decision to keep Craft in and let him settle down. Rick said we were going to be a great second half team and we showed it. Ray Carter had that great touchdown to the right, Craft threw a beauty to Moya; Chow just produced drives like a master. He is downright unbelievable. It's incredible to see the difference. Craft just threw medium range, accurate passes and guys like Dominique Johnson stepped up HUGE. DJ was incredible!! He is going to have an awesome season.
I was listening to Tim Cates on the way home and he said the line played well because we weren't talking about them or complaining about loss of yardage from penalties, the qb getting sacked. We only got 29 yards on the run but at least Chow was trying. So the line played ok, they held their own. Really impressive to see the coaches involved during time outs. You would have all of the offensive coaches there involved during time outs. Palcic was in the zone coaching that great game for the offensive line. They were warriors.
This was special tonight, very special. Things are changing, I can feel it. We just need these coaches to stay together and keep the change going and keep up efforts like this. The recruits there(I heard there were a bunch) saw something special, from the confident coaches, a tough team that held with and beat an SEC mainstay and to the end when the fans came together as one. We cheered our hearts out for our Bruins. When the lights went out, we all stood there together as Rick led the eight clap in the dark. It was an unexpected moment but Rick was there taking us and leading us from the dark back into the light.