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Gameday Roundup & Notes

Hello everyone. If you thought this was the Saturday you get your chores done and pay visit to family, think again. There are so many big games on tap today (Miami at OU, Oregon at Michigan, Nebraska at Wake Forest, ND at PSU comes to mind immediately) leading up to our expected beat down of BYU, you might as well park yourself in front of the tube now, and wait for 3:30 PST roll around (unless of course you are already out setting up your spread at the Rose Bowl golf course).

Anyways in case you are logging on here are the clips I have been reading this morning.

You think we were brash all week looking forward to this game? Well just listen to our defense (emphasis mine throughout):

No. 13 UCLA wants to make amends today against BYU, which brings an 11-game winning streak and a proven offense into the Rose Bowl, where the Bruins won 12 of their past 13 games.

"Our standards are total domination," UCLA cornerback Trey Brown said. "(Stanford) made a couple plays that we felt we should have made. Our standards are high. We're never the type of defense to be satisfied, so we're not satisfied unless they've got zero points, zero rushing yards and zero passing yards."

Stanford rolled up 383 yards on UCLA (1-0), and scored 17 points. It might not sound like a dismal outing, but it is light years from the 166 yards and no points the Bruins allowed against the Cardinal last season.

In 2006, Stanford scored 33 total points in five home games, and scored more than 17 points twice in 12 games. The Cardinal eclipsed 383 yards once last season.

"We are definitely looking to raise the intensity against BYU," UCLA defensive end Bruce Davis said. "We kind of needed that (Stanford game). To have a team like that score 17 points on you is a very humbling experience, especially with the crew that we have, as far as the staff and the team.

"So we're definitely looking to crank it up a few notches and raise the bar because this is a much, much, much better football team."
In other words we should be disappointed if BYU somehow puts up more than 9 points on the board this afternoon at the Rose Bowl (plus 9 is a pretty cool number for our defense).

As for our offense, Norvell gives us his take on what to expect from BYU's defense which apparently has built a little reputation by beating up on mediocre Pac-10 teams and inferior competition from MWC:
"They are not complicated, but they play very hard and they make you earn the yards that you get," UCLA offensive coordinator Jay Norvell said. "They don't get out of position much. They don't over-pursue. They play a soft, blanket coverage and try to rally to the ball."
And how is Norvell planning to deal with this defense? Kuwada has the scoop in the OC Register:
"They are going to challenge our patience a little bit,'' offensive coordinator Jay Norvell said of the Cougars. "We have to be patient and take what they give us and do a good job attacking them when we can. But they're a good defense. They've won a lot of games in a row, they're very confident and they expect to play well. It will be a good challenge for us.

"They're real disciplined and don't over-pursue, so they just kind of play a sound, basic scheme and they play really hard. They have really good linebackers. They read well. They kind of teach their players to read the offense and their scheme and not do a lot of different things.''

It will be up to the Bruins to do more, if they can.
Bruins should be able to do more given the talent we have on offense, a point reiterated by Markey in the same article:
"But we have a lot of explosive players, a lot of explosive receivers especially, so we're going to try to exploit them in that aspect and try to do some things they wouldn't want us to do.''
So it will be up to our coaches to make sure players like Markey are put in the position with right play calls to move the ball with efficiency and precision this afternoon at the Rose Bowl. I know efficiency and precision is not something we are used to under Dorrell, but we are giving him his last shot in his fifth season at UCLA. We saw some encouraging signs last weekend at Palo Alto, and here is our eloquent coach to tell us what to expect this Saturday at Arroyo Seco. From the LA article (linked above):
Said Dorrell: "This is a good week to get better."
Who are we to disagree with 'the Thinker' of Pac-10? Time for Dorrell's team to put together another blow out Saturday.

We will have the game thread up later today.