Let’s take a really quick trip down memory lane. 38-10. That was last year’s opening game UCLA deficit at the half against TAMU, and we all remember the firestorm that occurred on social media during that half of football, only for the second half UCLA comeback and eventual UCLA win to rank as one of the greatest UCLA wins ever.
Well, this is 2018, and the Chip Kelly era at UCLA has officially started, and this is the first Second Half Game Thread of his tenure.
Cincinnati won the coin toss and deferred, and UCLA received the ball to start the 2018 season, and their first drive looked like 2017 UCLA football as they went three and out with a false start penalty thrown in.
The first big play of the game came as Hayden Moore was sacked by Rick Wade and fumbled the ball. Keisean Lucier-South recovered at the Bearcats 13 yard line.
UCLA’s offense looked like what we would expect a Chip Kelly offense to look like, they used tempo, forced a Cincy timeout and quickly scored as Bolu Olorunfunmi scored a TD from about a yard out. UCLA went up 7-0 at the 7:38 mark.
Been a long time since a UCLA defense has caused this much confusion for an opponent.— Bruins Nation (@BruinNation) September 1, 2018
This Tweet above was the story of the first quarter. UCLA mixed things up on the defensive side of the ball, and caused confusion for the Bearcats and their offense.
Thanks to a beautiful JJ Molson 47 yd FG, the Bruins ended the first quarter up 10-0.
My first quarter Tweet aged about as well as my dog’s poop in the backyard, because while the UCLA defense was stout during the first quarter, that was not the case in the second. Cincinnati converted multiple 3rd downs to start the second quarter, and drove the ball deep into UCLA territory, and even converted a 4th and 1. A 14 play 75 yard Cincy drive was capped by a Michael Warren II run for 1 yd for a TD, and pulled the Bearcats within 3 at the 10:02 mark.
Wilton Speight then immediately threw an interception on UCLA’s first play of their next possession to give CIncy great field position.
While the first quarter was highlighted by the defense, the second quarter had UCLA’s defense missing tackles all over the field, and also missing opportunities for turnovers as Nate Meadors missed a chance for a pick six as he dropped a sure interception. Cincy took advantage and Michael Warren II to run for a 1 yd TD to put the Bearcats up 14-10.
On UCLA’s next drive, Wilton Speight was hit hard by Marquis Copeland, fumbled and was injured. The play went under review, and the Bruins were lucky it was not called a fumble. Dorian Thompson-Robinson then entered the game, and completed the first pass of his UCLA career to Theo Howard for 16 yards to the Cincy 40 for a first down. UCLA’s drive then stalled.
There were a lot of 2017 UCLA football memories flashing in my mind watching the second quarter edition of the 2018 Bruins. UCLA was dominated up front, Cincy ran at will, the Bruins tackled poorly, and overall the Bruins just did not make plays on either side of the ball.
Let’s hope the first quarter Bruins return after the half.
UCLA Rushing: 58 yards
UCLA Passing: 68 yards
33 total plays for 126 yards
Listen to the Game Here on BN!
This season, we are proud to, again, have today’s audio feed for everyone who opts to use the TuneIn player embedded below. For optimum results, start the audio feed then pause your DVR and sync them up together so you don’t have to listen to the ESPN broadcast team if you don’t want to.