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Sunday Morning Quarterback, Saturday Edition: Hey Chip, BENCH DORIAN!

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An open letter to Chip Kelly on behalf of UCLA Bruin fans everywhere.

NCAA Football: UCLA at Colorado Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Chip Kelly says he doesn’t pay attention to what the media writes or says about him or his team. Well, on the off chance that, at some point, today or tomorrow, Chip decides to Google himself or UCLA Bruins football or something like that, I have written this open letter to Chip Kelly.


Dear Chip,

I’m writing today on behalf of every Bruin fan I know.

We all watched last night game against the Colorado Buffaloes and we were feeling pretty good that the team might actually win its first game of your tenure last night, especially after JJ Molson kicked his third field goal of the game early in the third quarter.

We saw a lot of improvement in the team’s first half last night.

Even your playcalling was much improved over the Fresno State game a few weeks ago.

We actually had a running attack during the first half! It was almost as if the offense line had collectively put on a few hundred pounds during “Improvement Week” as they pushed the Colorado defense around, allowing UCLA to gain almost 100 yards in the first half.

It was the best half of football we’ve seen from the team so far this season.

Finally! This has been what we’ve been waiting for since you were hired in November to fix our football program!

A win to start conference play would have allowed most Bruin fans to forget the 0-3 start.

How good was the first half last night? It was good enough that most Bruin fans were ok with the performance of starting quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson who was 12 of 19 for 96 yards in the first half. It wasn’t spectacular, but it wasn’t horrible either.

We had clearly taken a step up during “Improvement Week!”

Then the second half happened.

Arguably, it was the worst half of football we’ve seen so far this season.

In the third quarter, the rushing attack was still looking good. UCLA had rushed seven times for 57 yards. That’s an average of more than eight yards per carry.

But the passing game was quite literally non-existent.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson was 0 for 3 for no yards in the third quarter. Two of those three passes came during a critical possession when UCLA was down by just five. Had UCLA scored on that drive, they could have re-taken the lead.

But your freshman quarterback couldn’t complete a pass when his team really needed a sustained drive.

After UCLA punted, Colorado went on a sustained drive and scored again that left the Bruins down by 12, 28-16.

This was the point where you should have sat Thompson-Robinson down on the bench and sent in another quarterback. I don’t care who it was. It could have been Week 1 starter Wilton Speight. It could have been Austin Burton or Matt Lynch. It could have even been walk-on quarterback Josiah Norwood. Heck, it even could have been Dymond Lee who played quarterback in high school, but was converted to receiver by Jim Mora. It just needed to be someone other than Dorian Thompson-Robinson.

After watching him play in four games, I don’t think there’s anyone who wants him on the field in a clutch situation except for you. His accuracy issues are killing UCLA.

How inaccurate have his passes been?

He couldn’t hit the ocean with a beach ball while standing on Zuma Beach. It would either land just short or end up in Australia or China or some other place on the other side of the Pacific.

You claim to be trying to win football games. You say that you’re going to play the guys who give the Bruins the best chance to win. After watching Thompson-Robinson in four games, I don’t believe you.

If you really meant it, you would have benched him early in the fourth quarter in favor of one of UCLA’s other quarterbacks.

He finished the second half 5 of 16 for a whopping 35 yards. That’s just over two yards per pass attempt. Thompson-Robinson was so bad that the Bruins probably would have been better off trying to run the ball every time he threw it in the second half.

So, as the Bruins prepare to play the Washington Huskies next Saturday night at the Rose Bowl, please do all Bruin fans a favor: Start a different quarterback.

If none of the four other quarterbacks are an option, then maybe you should hold a tryout for potential quarterbacks this week. With 24,000 undergrads on campus, you should be able to find someone who can move the ball more than 50 yards through the air when the team really needs it.

If insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result, after watching the first four games of this season, I’m beginning to think you may just be insane for insisting on playing Thompson-Robinson.

So, with that in mind, I beg you to please do something different against Washington.

Please, for the love of the Four Letters and the powderkeg blue and gold, please bench Dorian Thompson-Robinson.


Go Bruins.