Last night, the UCLA Bruins defense caused six turnovers against the Washington State Cougars and four of those turnover led to UCLA touchdowns. It turns out that the Bruins needed each and every one of those turnovers to win last night’s 67-63 shootout in Pullman, Washington.
Meanwhile, the Cougs were not able to cause more than one Bruin turnover.
Offensively, everything seemed to go right for the Bruins as UCLA scored the most points in a game. It’s the most points UCLA has scored since they scored 68 against BYU in 1993.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson had his best game as a Bruin. He finished 25 of 38 passing for 507 yards with five touchdown passes. He also ran the ball 11 times for 57 yards and two more touchdowns.
He threw to a total of seven different receivers with Demetric Felton leading the team with 150 receiving yards, but Chase Cota was close behind with 147 yards. Of course, nearly two-thirds of Felton’s yards came on his 94-yard TD reception while 61 of Cota’s came on the Hail Mary at the end of the first half.
Overall, the biggest thing the Bruins need to improve on from this game has to be the fact that Anthony Gordon was able to complete 41 passes for 570 and nine TDs. It’s easy to overlook this in light of the fact that UCLA won the game.
But, think about this for a moment.
If Keisean Lucier-South doesn’t strip the ball from Gordon’s hands to get the ball back, UCLA doesn’t win and, if that was the case, what would we be discussing today?
We’d be discussing the fact that UCLA’s pass defense got torched for 41 pass completions, 570 yards, and nine TDs by Gordon.
Sure, no one thought UCLA even stood a chance in this game. In fact, many of us expected the pass defense to get thrashed by Gordon. It was other aspects of the game that turned the tide in the Bruins’ favor.
We simply shouldn’t accept in a win what we wouldn’t accept in a loss.
So, overall, it was the best effort by the Bruins that we’ve seen so far this season without a doubt. We should all be happy with last night’s performance.
One thing that Chip Kelly has said is that he is looking for more consistency from this team. Last night, he got consistency from the offense as well as consistency on the defense in the form of the team’s ability to create turnovers.
Next week, we’ll see if the team is capable of creating consistency from one game to the next.