Yeah it was that kind of game. - Kent Horner
UCLA loses in it's first appearance in the Holiday Bowl.
Coming into this game, there were a few things that we knew: Baylor's defense was bad, and their offense was good. Our defense was decent, and our offense was decent.
Since the Holiday Bowl is played in America's Finest City, allow me to quote a great movie based in San Diego:
Indeed, Ron Burgundy, indeed.
In the first quarter, while we floundered on offense, Baylor put up two touchdowns. It got up to 21-0 before we managed to score. Allright, down two touchdowns. That isn't insurmountable - Baylor has a horrible defen... oh wait.
With Jake Brendel, Simon Goines and Torian White hurt at various times throughout the game, the offensive line was beat up and struggling. This led to Johnathan Franklin going absolutely nowhere, and Baylor absolutely feasting upon our makeshift line. Of course we could have adjusted but... why would our coaches do that? Why roll Hundley out? Let him run? Do his thing? Psh. Baylor then put up two more touchdowns, while we kicked a mighty field goal at the end of the half to bring the score to 35-10. Because you know, you don't want to give the ball up on downs at the end of the half with maybe 10 seconds left to go... the other team will get it to start the other half!
*call down from the blog replay booth*
Oh, they don't do that? Well, then going for the points was pretty conservative/(enter former UCLA coach name here-ian.)
Going into halftime, the score was 35-10. Not horrible. We just had to keep Baylor off the scoreboard. And we ALMOST did - we held them to only TWO touchdowns in the second half. Unfortunately the offense couldn't stay on the field and score to make this interesting (or respectable) as we only scored one touchdown and a nice 40 yard field goal from Ka'imi Fairbairn. (and a pretty cool fake punt by Jeff Locke.)
This wasn't the way we wanted to end the season - a three game losing streak, an absolute stinker in the NATIONALLY TELEVISED bowl game, and playing football that was unrecognizable to a UCLA football fan. Did you recognize that offense out there? I certainly didn't. I understand we didn't have three-fifths of our starting offensive line, but we couldn't move the ball to save our lives. Good job to Baylor for actually watching our game tape, seeing our faults, putting pressure on Hundley (seriously, six sacks by a team that had 13 all year. THIRTEEN. Anthony Barr has more than that by himself) and forced us to play a game we didn't want to play.
Thankfully, a brawl didn't break out, like the last time we were on national TV in a blowout, but it came oh so close at times.
(if you were wondering how we'd do against Oregon, I think this game would have been a pretty good indicator.)
Thank you to our seniors. This wasn't the way you wanted to end your UCLA careers, but thank you for your years at UCLA, for slogging through the previous regime, and for providing the spark and leadership we needed in the first year of the Mora era.
So much for that Holiday.
(Hi. If you came here with a link that says 49-19, UCLA scored a last second touchdown that wasn't a touchdown but no one wanted to challenge or review it because everyone just wanted to get out of San Diego kthxbye)