First, in case you missed it, Oregon rolled to a 59-41 win over UC Berkeley last night, in the Ducks' first of two visits to Levi's Stadium this season. They will almost assuredly return on December 5 for the championship game.
Will their opponent be Colorado, today's foe for UCLA? NO. With four losses in four conference games, the Buffs are done. Will the Ducks' opponent be UCLA? MAYBE. But a loss today would end any hopes of winning the Pac-12 South, any hopes of playing in a meaningful January bowl game, and any hopes of having another revenue sport to distract us from TIARA's "program".
Chris Foster has a preview in the Los Angeles Times of today's contest. Foster also has an interesting take on the season so far. Here we thought the Bruins were underachieving. It turns out, per this article, that the Bruins have been focusing on building character, which you apparently don't do if you beat opponents as you should. Oregon is clearly missing the boat with their approach of beating teams handily.
Jack Wang has an article in the Daily News, about the likely increased exposure for Mossi Johnson today. Johnson showed what he could do on special teams last week in Berkeley with a very nice return. And with Thomas Duarte probably playing less today, that should mean more opportunity for Johnson as a go-to target for Brett Hundley.
Our esteemed offensive coordinator, Nel Mazzne, clearly brings an analytical approach to how best to use his players, as evidenced by this quote from the Wang article-
Mazzone said there isn’t a particular reason that Johnson didn’t play more — just that he got lost a bit on the depth chart.
I feel better now. It's not like UCLA has preseason camp or daily practices to know why particular players don't play more. They just get lost.
Anyway, today is a must-win and a should-win for the Bruins. Game time is 11 am, Pacific, on the Pac-12 Network.
Elsewhere around the country, here are the games which will be taking place before or concurrently with the UCLA game.
|Noon ET||Texas||No. 11 Kansas State||ESPN||ESPN3.com|
|Noon ET||Rutgers||No. 16 Nebraska||ESPN2||ESPN3.com|
|Noon ET||UAB||Arkansas||SEC Network||ESPN3.com|
|Noon ET||North Texas||Rice||FSN, ROOT||foxsports.com/foxsportsgo|
|Noon ET||Maryland||Wisconsin||Big Ten Network||btn2go.com|
|12:30 p.m. ET||North Carolina||Virginia||ACC Network|
|1 p.m. ET||Northern Illinois||Eastern Michigan||ESPN3.com|
|1 p.m. ET||San Jose State||Navy||CBSSN|
|2 p.m. ET||No. 25 UCLA||Colorado||Pac-12 Network||pac-12.com/live|
|2 p.m. ET||Akron||Ball State||ESPN3.com|
|2 p.m. ET||Georgia Southern||Georgia State||ESPN3.com|
|2 p.m. ET||Massachusetts||Toledo||ESPN3.com|
|2 p.m. ET||Ohio||Western Michigan||ESPN3.com|
|2:30 p.m. ET||Kent State||Miami (Ohio)||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||No. 1 Mississippi State||Kentucky||CBS||CBSSports.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||No. 22 West Virginia||Oklahoma State||ESPN||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Texas Tech||No. 10 TCU||FOX||foxsports.com/foxsportsgo|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Florida Atlantic||No. 23 Marshall||FS1||foxsports.com/foxsportsgo|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Michigan||No. 8 Michigan State||ABC||abc.go.com/watch-live|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Central Michigan||Buffalo||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Georgia Tech||Pittsburgh||ESPNU||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Louisiana Tech||Southern Miss||ASN, CSN|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Oregon State||Stanford||ESPN2||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Boston College||Wake Forest||RSN, ROOT|
|4 p.m. ET||Vanderbilt||Missouri||SEC Network||ESPN3.com|
|4 p.m. ET||UNLV||Utah State||ESPNews||ESPN3.com|
|4 p.m. ET||Old Dominion||Western Kentucky||conferenceusa.com|
There are no barn burners here, but there are some matchups involving likely January bowl participants- including a Big 12 matchup with Kansas State hosting Texas, #1 Mississippi State visiting Kentucky in an SEC matchup, current Big 10 frontrunner Michigan State hosting Michigan, and TCU hosting Texas Tech in another Big 12 matchup with national implications.
Fire away with your thoughts and observations on the UCLA game, and the other games around the country in the early time slots.