Max Hall has been an absolute machine so far this year. His accuracy and decision making has been in top form in every game this year, and it reached a crescendo during Saturday's game, as Hall set a Cougar record in passing with six touchdowns in the first half. Hall finished going 27-of-35 for 272 yards and seven touchdown passes.
Backup Brenden Gaskins saw some good time in mop-up duty and finished the game going 4-of-5 for 66 yards. This game was undoubtedly a good confidence booster for Gaskins, as he performed very well when spelling Max Hall late in the game.
Running Back: A
Taufui Vakapuna was blocking, and Harvey Unga was running and catching the ball as well as ever. The Cougars were able to mount a very productive running attack against a tough UCLA defensive front. Unga and Vakapuna combined to rush for more than 100 yards for the second straight game against a Pac-10 opponent.
J.J. DiLuigi, Wayne Latu, Bryan Kariya and even Iona Pritchard were able to get some quality reps out of the Cougar backfield. All four performed well, and they look to add some much needed depth behind Unga and Vakapuna.
Wide Receiver: A
It was predicted that Austin Collie would have a big game, and he certainly didn't disappoint. Collie did all of his work during the first half, catching 10 passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Reed was again very workman-like in his consistency and dependability while catching passes during important stages of the ball game. Reed White and Tyler Kozlowski also got into the act, catching a pass apiece.
Tight End: A
Dennis Pitta had a relatively quiet outing, catching five passes for 47 yards and two touchdowns. Pitta was effective once again every single time he was targeted, as he continues his dominant play. Andrew George had a very good outing as well, chiming in with two catches for 15 yards.
Offensive Line: A
The interior of the line won the battle against UCLA's tough defensive front, and they look to have hit their stride in run blocking. In pass protection they were almost perfect and didn't allow Hall to be sacked. One has to wonder if Hall will go the entire year without being sacked at this point. The offensive line is getting it done.
Defensive Line: A
Jan Jorgensen and Ian Dulan were both lively and active in their pass rushes, while Brett Denney contributed some good play as well. Russell Tialavea looked much improved and the Cougar defensive front dominated the course of play throughout the ball game.
Matt Putnam got a lot of playing time during the second half and responded very well, intercepting a pass and accounting for at least one sack. It's readily apparent now that coaches intend on redshirting Bernard Afutiti, as he did not enter the game at any point.
The most-improved-unit award goes to the linebackers, as they performed very well throughout the game. Matt Bauman, Matt Ah You and Shawn Doman controlled the play and didn't allowing UCLA to get any big-gainers. David Nixon and Coleby Clawson were very good as well.
Just about every linebacker on the roster got in during some point of the ballgame. Players such as Daniel Sorensen, Michael Alisa, Spencer Hadley and Iona Pritchard saw some quality reps and responded well.
Scott Johnson was as solid as ever, while Brandon Howard struggled more than you'd like to see in coverage. Howard didn't have a bad game, but certainly not a good one, as there are things he needs to work on to achieve better consistency in defending against the pass and in run support.
What likely brought a smile to many fans' faces was Brandon Bradley entering the game as a nickelback during most third-down situations. Bradley responded well and gave a glimpse of his potential. G Pittman entered the game late and responded well.
David Tafuna had a very good game, providing some good support and solid tackles against the UCLA running game and the Bruins' short passes. Kellen Fowler didn't have much to do (which is never a bad thing for a free safety), as UCLA rarely tried to exploit BYU down the field.
Andrew Rich got some reps in the nickel coverage during the first half and saw lots of time during the second half at both strong safety and free safety. Shiloah Te'o got some good reps, as did Jordan Pendleton.
Special Teams: B
They got another blocked kick, and Michael Alisa caused a fumble that Shiloah Te'o recovered on a kick return. Justin Sorensen had some inconsistency on his kickoffs, which will have to be worked out, and the kick coverage unit allowed far too many yards on a couple of returns. C.J. Santiago had a very good day with two punts for an average of just more than 50 yards.