Monday, October 8, 2012
Hundley talks about picks, poor game
By Peter Yoon
LOS ANGELES -- UCLA Bruins quarterback Brett Hundley has looked so good early this season it's easy to forget he's a freshman.
Saturday night, he gave a little reminder.
Hundley had a rough game in the 43-17 loss against the California Golden Bears in Berkeley, where he had four passes intercepted. He completed 31 of 47 passes, but tallied 253 yards through the air, his lowest total since opening week.
"Not every game is going to go your way, but you have to be able to battle back and respond to adversity, learn from mistakes and get better," said Hundley, who is ninth in the nation with 1,723 yards passing and 12th with 13 touchdowns. "It’s not nice to come away with that, but I’m not one to look down upon something like that. It’s always a major growth thing. I’m not mad about it. I’m not sad about it. You've just got to continue to keep working and get better from it."
The interceptions stand out because Hundley had been pretty accurate for most of the season. He had only three passes intercepted in the first five games and had gone the last two tilts without an interception. He said the high total of picks was in part because of the desperation offense at the end of the game. Three of Hundley's interceptions came in the fourth quarter, as UCLA tried to rally from a deficit.
"Later on in the game we had to press the situations, and I had to take some chances and things didn’t bounce our way," Hundley said. "We were pressing trying to make something happen. You have to take shots and it may not be the best of shots, but you have to take the shots that are there. Sometimes it’s one-on-one matchups and the ball will come down where it may."
Hundley said that after watching the film, he was confident that he had made the right reads but just didn't make good throws.
"I think everything was right," he said. "You can always do something better in a play. Everything was what it needed to be. When I see something, I’m going to believe in it."
Another number that stands out from that game is the 5.38 yards per passing attempt. It is an extraordinarily low number that indicates most of the passes were of the short-yardage variety. Hundley did not complete a pass longer than eight yards in the first quarter and nine of his 31 completions went for double-digit yardage.
He said he wasn't going to let one poor performance ruin what has been a promising start to his career.
"I’m not really worried about it," he said. "I just have to get better and learn from the film. Like I said, not everything will always go your way, but you gotta bounce back and play the next play."
How he responds will reveal his true character, Hundley said.
"Adversity will hit you," he said. "But it’s how you respond that sort of defines you as a man."