(Hey SBN-Bruin's Nation.......Just because you guys have decided to ignore this cite, doesn't mean that we don't want to still write about our team....... It would be greatly appreciated if you would allow us, the fans as well as the (former) readers and (former) contributors to this cite, to use FANPOSTS as a way to continue to write about UCLA despite the fact that you have chosen not to. Closing out a "Post" that is still "active" with contributions does not endear your cite to those few of us who are still here contributing. If contributions are "actively" being made to a particular post, please leave it open. Thank you for listening….listening….listening....(for those who find this post 100 years from now who might be wondering what the shrinking words are, they are an echo effect because there really is no one out there running this cite in the cavernous expanse of emptiness that is now SBN-Bruins Nation).
Now……Back to our regularly scheduled program.
.......This was a nice response by the Bruins to those coaching philosophy lapses that took place against Fresno State. Gone was the soft zone, with Haevner carving us up like a Thanksgiving Turkey with his short drops and rhythm passes. Instead, we attacked Stanford's QB, Tanner McKee, as we did the QB's for Hawaii and LSU.....with multiple, shifting, defensive fronts and a variety of pressure/blitz packages. As Peyton and Eli said last night during the Dallas game, they preferred to play against "straight zone defenses" as opposed to the multiple, shifting fronts.....although the shifting can result in a big offensive play due to defensive assignment mistakes, they can also create confusion leading to turnovers, sacks, TFL's and fumbles......Against Stanford, our defense provided a demonstration of what they were talking about. For much of the game we confused McKee and Stanford's O-line with various defensive sets and a package of run and pass blitzes. We consequently stuffed the run and limited their passing game. The glaring exceptions were the two long TD throws resulting from busted coverages (there was also an outstanding individual effort on a catch by a well-covered Stanford receiver in the corner of the end zone. You can't stop that). We can live with such plays, given our potent offense, as long as we continue to improve on limiting our mistakes........Another coaching lapse we fixed: Chardonnay had SIX TOTAL TOUCHES rushing and receiving against Fresno State. Against Stanford he had 24 carries and 5 receptions for 175 total yards and a touchdown. Nuff said about that.
.......Kyle Phillips was a monster! His punt return; the dime he caught from DTR over the middle on a 75-yard score; and the DTR throw he dug out in the front corner of the end zone for his second score that put Stanford out of it at 35-24, were things of beauty. He now has two touchdowns in back-to-back games. What a weapon he has become.
.......DTR....What can I say? Unless he was faking it, I cannot explain how he was physically capable of throwing the ball as he did with his injured shoulder. Please note that the "fake" reference is in jest. The "mechanics" of his injury were clear.....late in the 2nd Quarter, with around 4:30 left, he was scrambling to his right, trying to avoid a sack. He threw the ball away but was tackled by a chasing lineman. He hit the ground on his right side with his right arm fully extended above his head......his body weight and that of the tackler caused his arm and shoulder to over-rotate, most likely causing a hyper-extension of the shoulder or possibly a slight shoulder separation. I recognized this because I suffered the same injury with the same mechanics on my non-throwing shoulder. What isn't entirely clear to me, however, is how DTR continued to perform through the pain at such a high level even when his shoulder was getting demonstrably worse as the game progressed!!!!! What a courageous performance!!!! My critiques of DTR were always limited to his non-improving fundamentals.......never his mental toughness. He won me over in that department during the Washington State 32-point comeback win he orchestrated. He was injured then too...... Haevner showed guts for Fresno State last week when he drove his team to scores with his banged-up hip, but he only had to do that over the last two offensive series of the game (which was when he got hurt)........DTR PLAYED THE ENTIRE SECOND HALF, running and throwing with his worsening, injured throwing shoulder. It took massive "stones" to do that!...... I just hope he didn't cause himself some permanent damage. Knowing the pain that this injury causes, and the fact that it is his throwing shoulder, I would not be surprised in the least if Garbers starts against Arizona State Saturday. This kind of injury takes rest and time to heal.....you don't normally "play through it." We'll see what happens this week. Go Bruins.