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The Wednesday wrap-up

Bad news on Ben Olson's left hand, Lonnie White reports:

UCLA freshman quarterback Ben Olson learned Tuesday that an injury to his left throwing hand is more serious than thought. An MRI test revealed a small fracture, which will force him out of Saturday's game at San Diego State.

"I wish I kind of had given it a little break this week and not tried to rush back so fast," said Olson, who suffered the injury a week ago when he hit a teammate's helmet in practice while following through after a pass. "I thought it was just a bruise."

Initially, tests did not show any breaks and team doctors told Olson that he would be better once the swelling went down. On Monday, Olson participated in some drills and threw short passes but felt discomfort after practice.

David Koral will be the #2 quarterback.  Well, we can't blame this one on KD.  This is bad luck, pure and simple.  The truly unfortunate thing is that this game should be an opportunity to blow the opposition out and get much-needed experience for backups who the coaches expect to contribute.  Players like Ben Olson.  It appears that will be impossible.  

However, that's not to say the SDSU game will be a cakewalk:

UCLA finished with 410 yards in a 33-10 victory over San Diego State last season, but the Bruins struggled early to move the ball.

No one had more problems than Drew Olson, who completed only four of nine passes for only 24 yards in the first quarter and was seven of 19 for 68 yards at halftime.

However, White points out that the Aztecs lost a lot of their best players from last year's defense.  Read the preview for further details.

Although Sportsline's Tony Mejia picked the Aztecs over the Bruins, history is not on his side.  

Lori Shepler/Los Angeles Times

Ben Bolch writes about the history of the "rivalry," a history in which the Aztecs are 0-19-1 (the tie was in 1924).  Of course, that has little bearing on this year's game.  

As always, Brian Dohn is a must read.  Dohn understands and points out the ramifcations in a way that most reporters don't:

The injury to Ben Olson is a crushing blow to UCLA's plans. The Bruins wanted to utilize him in a backup role, getting him into games for limited action while grooming him to be the quarterback of the future.

Although Olson is hoping to be back Sept. 10 against Rice, that might be too optimistic. It seems more likely Olson will miss the first three games, then return when the Bruins open Pacific-10 Conference play Oct. 1 against Washington.


 The more important issue is the development of Olson, UCLA's quarterback of the future.

"The biggest thing is that every day he came out here, you can see him keep taking steps," Bruins offensive coordinator Tom Cable said. "He kept pushing Drew, and Drew kept taking steps. Then the hand injury. Certainly, it retards growth. You're not getting where you want to be unless you're out there doing it."

Dohn also reports on what Blindos would call another sleeper.  KD has secured on oral commitment from a long snapper, who apparently will grayshirt.

Here's a story on SDSU RB Lynell Hamilton from the North County Times, and Mike Sullivan reports that CB Jacob Elimimian is eligible to play on Saturday.  I'm, uh, really surprised that Elimimian was able to meet San Diego State's exacting academic requirements.

Sullivan also prepared a scouting report on the Bruins.