So it looks like we are going to go through the motions for rest of this season. Technically Dorrell can still salvage the season by winning the Pac-10 championship, getting us into the Rose Bowl, and then perhaps ride off onto some dream gig in the NFL giving us the middle finger.
But if you are reasonable college football observer you know the likelihood of that. It doesn't look good. And if Dorrell cannot win the Pac-10 championship, he will simply have to go or let go.
So with that big picture scheme in the background UCLA gets to play a team it should have no problem beating at the Rose Bowl even if it were led by Ed Kazirian.
Washington Huskies come into the Rose Bowl also reeling. Although in fairness to them they got manhandled by a decent football team. Still though given the recent history between two programs things look good for UCLA at the Rose Bowl even for a total clown like Karl Dorrell:
But the Puppies are coming into town feeling good about their program and also somewhat confident about breaking that streak. All because of Jake Locker.
Jake Locker is their hot shot red shirt freshman QB, who is reminding me everyone of Mark Brunell. In just three games he has emerged as the centerpiece of Huskies offense. From Sportsline again:
The Huskies need to get more balance in their offense. QB Jake Locker accounted for 255 of their 346 yards of total offense, and 102 of 142 yards rushing against Ohio State. The Huskies have to start getting some production in the running game from someone other than Locker, preferably RB Louis Rankin. Washington has had success running against UCLA the past few years and figures to make a more concerted effort to get the running game going this week. But it would also be a good week to get the passing game going, as well, as UCLA has allowed an average of 333.7 yards passing and eight passing touchdowns.
Huskies we should note have the 9th worst passing attack in the Pac-10, and their rushing game hasn't been all that great either ranking 5th in the conference (See D1 Stats). In terms of pure point production their offense has been on a downward slide scoring 42, 24, and 14 points in their first three games.
So they are not exactly on an upward trend.
In terms of their rushing game right now its Locker who is leading the team with 269 yards (6.73 yards carry). Louis Rankin is supposed to be their primary running back. However, he hasn't exactly blown up. He rushed for 152 yards against 'Cus which is pretty much putting up big numbers against some sh!tty team like ... oh I don't know ... Stanford? But since then he has been contained for 49 and 46 yards (Boise St and tOSU) as he failed to average less than 4 yards carry.
As for their receivers Marcel Reece and Anthony Russo are supposed to be the go to guys. Although Marcel (just like his UCLA counterparts) have been plagued by some dropsies.
I think if there ever was a game for Walker - OMG the most awesome DC ever - to fix his pass defense this game is it. I'd think by the fourth game of this season he would have his two safeties who were supposed to be best in the Pac-10 to be in shape and be in dominating form to shut down the opposing passing attack. I am expecting huge game from the Bruin passing defense this weekend. Because if we don't get it this week, I don't think we will see it for rest of the season.
I don't know guys.
Since Dorrell has been "sleeping well" at night and has been doing everything he can do to "fix" our mistakes from Utah game. So, I am expecting our defense to come out and absolutely man handle and rip apart this offense led by an erratic freshman QB
As for their defense they have been going downhill just like their offense giving up more yards (207, 388, 481) every game. tOSU absolutely crushed them with their rushing game ramming 281 yards down their throat.
Over at Dagwman.com there is a really interesting interview with a former Husky player who describes how tOSU OL blew up the Husky backers with some subtle adjustments in their running game after the first quarter:
"Ohio State came out running power runs right at us," he said. "Then in the second quarter they started doing a little trapping. Once they started trapping, they realized that their tackles were getting down on our middle backers. We never adjusted. At that point, it became very evident to me that Ohio State was going to run traps all day long--and that's what they did. I think our linebackers must be keying on the backfield. And that runs contrary to everything that (former UW coach) Jim Lambright taught us and what I know to be right about playing linebacker... The thing to remember is that an offensive line only has about eight blocking schemes, and the entire line has to block in unison on each of them. As a defender, once you develop a knowledge of that, then you can make plays." Meamber was asked what went wrong for Washington during a series of second-half draw plays that Ohio State ran for big chunks of yardage.
"When a linebacker plays a pass situation and is going to drop (into coverage), he must maintain position and wait for the quarterback to get past the (running) back before he makes his drop. Our linebackers were immediately releasing back into pass coverage, and they would be seven yards downfield when the running backs were handed the football. That kind of reaction creates a giant hole in the defense. The inside backers also have to be pinching to keep a draw play inside. Ohio State was running the draw play and getting their running backs outside the middle backers, and there were no Huskies there to make a play.
Oh and I am not worried about who we have at QB guys. Ben Olson, Patrick Cowan, the Law Firm, Rasshan who really cares? Whoever the Thinker puts in there it doesn't matter. I am sure our guys are going to come out and redeem themselves for last weekend's debacle by showing everyone how they can rebound from a tough loss just so we can have all the sound bites about Dorrell's team showing "character", blah blah blah, BS that will be eaten up by Dohn, Foster, and rest of the traditional reporters covering the UCLA beat.
If you are really jonesing for info. on the Husky defense then here is Bruin Roar:
The D-line is definitely the strongest squad on this side of the line of scrimmage for the Huskies. They get back 3 starters, including defensive end Greyson Gunheim, who played through a knee injury last season. He's receiving a lot of pre-season praise and the 6'5" senior will definitely need to be contained by our O-line. The other end, Daniel Te'0-Nesheim, looks to be another threat with a strong motor. If Kia and Abraham can keep these two under wraps then Olson should have a field day with the rest of the Husky defense.
The linebacker corps will introduce some new faces, with only senior Dan Howell back. Donald Butler and E.J. Savannah are young but they saw some minutes last year. The two sophomores will be asked to take up starting positions this season for the first time and there will obviously be a learning curve there. There is some talent in this group but not a lot of experience. They will likely rely on the D-line to help put a lot of pressure on Olson.
For the fourth straight week, the Bruins will face a team with some big questions in the secondary. Free Safety Jason Wells is back and so is Roy Lewis, but the other defensive backs have very little experience. This was a squad that was very maligned last season and they'll probably struggle again this time around as well. One name that Bruin fans might recognize is Byron Velega (now known as Byron Davenport). The former UCLA corner transfered to Washington and he could play some nickle back or even start at corner for the Huskies. Hopefully a play maker will emerge in our receiving corps in this game and give Olson a deep threat target. The Bruins should have an advantage here.
Now I mentioned how their LBers were getting clobber the by tOSU running backs. Note that they were missing Dan Howell, who missed Saturday's game with knee injury. He should be available for the UCLA game. Then again I am not all that worried because Dorrell has been sleeping well and our defense is in good hands.
If you are looking for more info on this because you are just so excited about it check out the preview from Washington Husky Sports, one of the better blogs in the Pac-10:
UW needs to start making some plays on offense that don't depend completely on Jake Locker. Like I said earlier Louis Rankin has had some of his best days as a Husky against UCLA.
Willingham, and Dorrell have out coached the UCLA coaches in the last two meetings, and there is no reason to suspect that it will change this year. Dorrell is obviously on the hot seat right now and has to use every device possible to make sure his team isn't flat a second consecutive week. I don't expect the Bruins to be flat.
Coach Baer and his defensive staff simply need to do a better job than they did last week against Ohio State. While turnovers were the main culprit in the loss, UW didn't read the Buckeyes offense very well. That has to change starting now. For some reason UW is able to anticipate the Bruins better than most of the teams they play.
The rain will be a factor in this one which is unusual for LA. To me that gives a slight advantage to Jake Locker, and keeps the Bruin passing game in check to a certain degree.
I pick Washington to win 27-24 in a hard fought game.
Anyways, that's what I got for now. As I said above, despite the Huskies enthusiasm, I will be absolutely stunned (despite knowing what an incompetent clown Dorrell is) if UCLA doesn't win this game.
If UCLA doesn't win this game (or lose one more game this season), I will stop compiling notes on other teams during the game week, and strictly focus on tear apart our incompetent clown on a daily basis. We will not let up until he is fired or has resigned from Westwood.
But then again ... no worries ... from my vantage point Dorrell has basically guaranteed a UCLA win this Saturday ... because he has been "sleeping well."