We were noticing a lot of tweeks about Big Ellis McCarthy playing in the OL last night. Apparently he switched his uniform to 53 to play OL and per the OC Registered he played both ways in fourth quarter:
When Baca (Mission Viejo High) was subbed out, freshman Ellis McCarthy - who played the first four games as a defensive tackle - came in for him.
McCarthy, a five-star recruit who changed his number from 93 to 53 for this game, played both ways in the fourth quarter, rotating in on defense, as well.
This is interesting. I don't think Ellis was coming in just to play in jumbo packages either. If anyone rewatches the game tape would love to hear more on this point. Meanwhile, Baca "felt great" in his return:
"It felt great," said Baca, who had missed two games while being checked because he kept having headaches. "I was extremely happy to be back out there, and I've got to thank UCLA Medical and the doctors for being so thorough.
"They decided it was just normal headaches."
Baca's condition was never thought to be concussion-related, he said. But his absence was a pain for the young UCLA line. First-year freshman Simon Goines starts at tackle alongside Baca, and two redshirt freshman, left tackle Torian White and center Jake Brendel, also start.
"I feel like I bring a little calmness and confidence to them," said Baca, who made his 36th career UCLA start. "I'm just happy to be out there to help them."
Great to hear he is feeling good. Now if he can do something about cutting down the rate of the penalties from our OL, we are all going to feel even better.