Saturday, December 4, 2010
Grades: USC 28, UCLA 14
By Blair Angulo
What ever happened to the carry-over effect? After throwing for 321 yards and three scores last week at Arizona State, Richard Brehaut completed just three of his first 12 pass attempts Saturday. UCLA was too one-dimensional early against the worst passing defense in the Pac-10.
Unfortunately for UCLA fans, Johnathan Franklin’s fumbling issues decided to make the trip to Pasadena. Malcolm Smith scooped up the fumble and returned it 68 yards for the go-ahead score. Momentum: Trojans. Franklin eclipsed the 100-yard mark in the first half, but finished with just 109 yards.
DIN THE TRENCHES
The difference up front was evident, if not completely obvious. USC’s offensive line did a number on UCLA’s front seven, opening wide running lanes for Allen Bradford (212 yards rushing). The Bruins hoped to force Matt Barkley (ankle) to use his legs, but he wasn’t bothered enough.
Without Franklin’s fumble, UCLA’s defense is looking at a completely different game in the second half. To add to the frustrations, both Tony Dye and Aaron Hester had interceptions that set up the Bruins in Trojans territory -- but the field position went to waste. Late touchdowns brought the grade down a notch.
Kai Forbath needed a field goal to set the UCLA career record but he never got the chance. Ricky Marvray looked good and bad on kickoff returns, making his looming position battle with Josh Smith all the more intriguing. Jeff Locke was his usual self: six punts, 283 yards, two inside the 20.
Losing is one thing -- but losing to the crosstown rival is another. Coach Rick Neuheisel and Co. are now 0-3 against the Trojans, which obviously doesn’t sit well with even the most optimistic supporters. Neuheisel preached patience following the game, but it’s running thin in Westwood.