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UCLA Football: Chip Kelly Didn’t Think About Benching Dorian Thompson-Robinson

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Chip Kelly dodged the serious questions about UCLA’s loss to Cincinnati when he met with the media this morning.

NCAA Football: UCLA at Cincinnati Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

After the UCLA Bruins’ loss to the Cincinnati Bearcats on Thursday, the Bruins began their preparations for the San Diego State Aztecs this morning. For all of Chip Kelly’s talk about meritocracy* and playing the “guys who have earned playing time,” he was certainly prepared to not discuss the actual on-field play of one player whose performance was so bad on Thursday night that it should ensure that someone else earns some playing time this weekend against the Aztecs.

Ben Bolch of the LA Times asked Kelly for his assessment of Dorian’s play on Thursday now that he’s had a chance to watch the film. Of course, Kelly immediately dismissed an opportunity to critique the lackluster play of the Bruins’ starting quarterback. Instead, Kelly responded with one of the weakest answers to ever crawl out of his mouth. Kelly said:

I look at the offense. It’s never just one person that plays fantastic and it’s never just one person that doesn’t play fantastic. So, I think the whole offense as a group...we need to do a better job clicking. We had some new guys upfront. Obviously, their front presented some problems and issues for us, but we’ve got to protect him better. We’ve got to be able to be a little bit cleaner in the pocket and give him a little bit more time because I thought our receivers did a decent job of getting open. But, there were times when we just didn’t have enough time to get them the football. So, overall, offensively we were not very good.

Bolch also asked a question that’s probably on everyone’s mind. He asked Kelly if he ever thought about playing another quarterback. He barely had an opportunity to get the question out before Chip emphatically said, “No...no.”

If I’m being honest, I’m disappointed that the reporters didn’t take a moment to ask the question on the minds of most Bruin fans which is, “If a player can earn playing time by training well, can a player lose playing time by not performing well in a game?” Because, let’s face it...Chip Kelly appears to be the only person who, after watching Thursday night’s game, thinks that the UCLA offense turned the ball over four times rather than thinking that Dorian Thompson-Robinson turned it over four times.

The videos from Monday’s practice are courtesy of UCLA Athletics.

Meanwhile, after practice, Jaylen Erwin and Boss Tagaloa gave their impressions from Thursday’s game along with looking ahead to this week’s game against San Diego State.



Go Bruins.