Play of the game.
Down 7-13 late in the third quarter the offense took the ball into Bruin territory poised to take the lead. The running game was working the previous series, even though Yvenson Bernard was sidelined with an injury, with Clinton Polk running and efficient seven times for 25 yards.
On the third play of the series Chris Horton tackled Polk at the UCLA 45 where he stripped the ball. UCLA recovered the Beavers third fumble of the game and took the wind out of OSU's sails. The offensive players were visibly beaten as the shoulders dropped while many just starred at the celebrating Bruins players in disbelief.
Players of the game.
Offense - WR Brandon Powers continued to do the little and big things as he caught four passes, all of them resulting in first downs, for 44 yards.
Defense - LB Alan Darlin had the first big play of the game as he stuffed RB Chris Markey on third and short to force the Bruins to punt on their first possession of the game. Darlin finished with a team high nine tackles, including on sack.
Special teams - P Kyle Loomis averaged 43.0 yards per boot on his two kicks. His first punt should have been downed at the UCLA one, but gunner Gerard Lawson lost track of where he was on the field and accidentally touched the ball while he was in the end zone.
Sacks in bunches.
The offensive line hadn't yielded a sack in three of the last four games but gave up five, four in the fourth quarter, against UCLA. But the total is a little deceiving.
QB Matt Moore was locking onto his receivers and almost all of the sacks were from Moore holding onto the ball too long.
Many feel the game was in limbo until the usually conservative Mike Riley decided to go for it on fourth down from OSU's own 48 early in the third quarter.
"We only had about half a yard to go," Riley said. "We'd been moving the ball well and I thought it would give us a spark."
Unfortunately UCLA read the play and stopped Bernard for a three yard loss. On the next offensive play QB Pat Cowan found WR Marcus Everett for a 45-yard touchdown and the lead for good.
According to offensive lineman Roy Schuening there was some miscommunication at the line of scrimmage which caused the breakdown in blocking.
"We checked the play at the line, which is what we're supposed to do," Schuening said. "and I didn't make the call quick enough for Andy. Then I didn't even make the block on the linebacker blitzing. I take responsibility for that one right there."
Hindsight is 20/20, and despite the outcome, center Kyle DeVan says it was the right call.
“I like the call." DeVan said. "Call that play 100 times and we would make it 99 times.”
But that one play wasn't the only momentum killer.
After UCLA kicked their first field goal of the game Oregon State marched 80 yards in 13 plays for their first and only touchdown of the game. The Beaver offense was clearly confident on the sidelines.
On the ensuing UCLA possession LB Bryant Cornell picked off Cowan giving the Beavers the ball at the UCLA 35. OSU had all the momentum at this point as the UCLA offense was deflated. A touchdown at this point would have most likely put the game away.
But Moore fumbled for the first time giving UCLA life.
When in rains it pours.
Pretty much everything that could have gone wrong went wrong for the Beavers. Here's a list of the mishaps:
- A blocked field goal
- A missed field goal
- Four fumbles resulting in 15 UCLA points
- A punt that should have been downed at the UCLA 1 yard line that was touched in the end zone for a touchback
- The offense moving into UCLA territory seven of its first eight possessions, including all five in the first half, but only getting seven points
- A nine minute drive that resulted in zero points
Head coach Mike Riley once again failed to move two games above .500 for his college head coaching career. He is now 34-34 at OSU.
This and that.
- Check the hot
news for additional, player specific news from the UCLA game.
- The Beavers have defeated UCLA in Los Angeles twice since 1971.
- UCLA had just five offensive plays in the third quarter
- UCLA was flagged 13 times for 155 yards
- UCLA only had 262 total yards, two more yards than the Beavers
- The OSU defense forced UCLA to punt its first three possessions.