The Bruins won the toss and deferred. TAMU received the kickoff and, three plays into the game, disaster struck for them, as Tahaan Goodman forced a fumble. After the Bruins recovered the fumble on the A&M half of the field, the Bruins could do nothing on offense and were forced to settle for a 38 yard field goal from freshman, JJ Molson, on his first kick in college. UCLA over TAMU, 3-0.
Texas A&M took over and promptly went three and out. UCLA could do nothing with the ball and Josh Rosen made a huge mistake trying to make something out of nothing at was he was being sacked, flipping the ball right in the arms of the Texas A&M defender at midfield for an interception.
UCLA’s defense stepped up, forcing a 38 yard field goal attempt from the Texas A&M freshman, also his first kick in college. Unfortunately for the Aggies, the kid rung it off the right upright, UCLA maintained its lead, 3-0.
The teams switched possessions again with Texas A&M pinning UCLA at their own 4 yard line towards the end of the first quarter. After two UCLA first downs, taking UCLA out to their own 39 yard line, the first quarter ended with UCLA up, 3-0.
UCLA continued its drive in the 2nd quarter, as Bolu Olorunfunmi (Verne had trouble with the pronunciation) sprung a big run, taking the Bruins to 1st and goal. The drive stalled there, however, and UCLA had to settle for a field goal with 11:33 left in the second quarter, with UCLA leading 6-0.
TAMU took over at their own 30 yard line after the kickoff. The Aggies went through the UCLA defense like butter, taking 11 plays to go 70 yards into the UCLA end zone, capped off by a 6 yard TD run by Keith Ford. 7-6 Aggies over Bruins.
UCLA responded with an impressive drive, highlighted by a 25 yard bullet to Darrin Andrews to get UCLA to first and goal at the 10. Once again, UCLA could not solve TAMU deep, and were forced to settle for Molson’s third field goal of the day, a chip shot. UCLA led, 9-7 with 4:56 left in the half.
TAMU took over and immediately, Trayveon Williams broke a 42 yard run deep into UCLA territory, gashing the Bruin D. A&M drove to the UCLA 11, but could not convert 3rd and 4 from the 5 yard line, settling for a 23 yard field goal in which the TAMU kicker squeeked the football just inside the left upright. TAMU 10-9.
After surrendering the lead, UCLA started at their own 20 yard line with two minutes and 55 seconds left. Josh Rosen was sacked on second and four, and UCLA could not convert on third and 10, forcing a punt.
TAMU took over on their 15 yard line with one minute 15 seconds left. After two quick plays, TAMU found themselves with a third and three. Noel Mazzone pulled a Noel Mazzone, ran the read option for a gain of one, and UCLA took its second to last time out with 43 seconds left in the half.
UCLA took over at their own 47 yard line after the punt. After a 13 yard reception, UCLA spiked the ball with 12 seconds left at TAMU’s 40 yard line. Jamabo caught a swing pass and advanced it to A&M’s 30 yard line.
It was there that UCLA’s coaching staff mismanaged the clock (how often have we seen that in the Mora ear) and were forced to call their final timeout before a JJ Molson 48 yard field goal attempt. The freshman pushed the ball wide right from the left hashmark, and TAMU ran out the last two seconds on the clock, ending the half. TAMU 10, UCLA 9.
UCLA will need to be better inside the red zone if they are to prevail in this game. At this point, it is a toss up.
Keep using the TuneIn player embedded above for a better audio feed than the SEC-biased talking heads that CBS is offering up, Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson from CBS.
This is your UCLA v. Texas A&M Second Half Thread.