Practice Notes, Mora Video

Practice is very high tempo again, there are a few injuries during practice, and Mora talks about the play of Devin Lucien and Xavier Su'a-Filo...

Tuesday's practice was a nice bounce back from Saturday in terms of tempo, which stands to reason, given that it was a good 25 degrees cooler.

There's still not much movement in the quarterback competition. Again, Kevin Prince, Richard Brehaut, Brett Hundley and Jerry Neuheisel got a pretty even amount of reps during team periods. What may have thrown off some on Saturday is that they're splitting the quarterbacks into two groups for team periods. Prince and Neuheisel will handle the snaps in one period, and then Brehaut and Hundley will handle them in the next. Today, it was Prince and Neuheisel taking the reps during the crowd noise 11 on 11; Saturday it was Brehaut and Hundley. While no real overall depth chart among those four has emerged, Prince and Hundley are taking the 1st team reps in their periods.

Prince looked pretty good again on Tuesday, and is getting much more consistent on his short throws. Hundley also had a good overall day, and it really is just night and day how much better he looks compared to last year. Brehaut had probably his worst day of practice, throwing a few way short during 1 on 1's, and just generally not looking as accurate as he has. Neuheisel made a couple of pretty good throws, one across his body where he got some nice zip on it.

In injury news, as Coach Mora talked about in the post game, Andrew Abbott and Jordan Zumwalt both sat out practice. Abbott has a right knee injury, and Zumwalt has a stomach issue. During practice, Dalton Hilliard and Anthony Barr both went down with cramps, and Frankin bruised his knee. Jerry Rice Jr. got hurt during practice and is being taken for X-rays on his clavicle.

In punt returns, Jordon James got the first reps, Steven Manfro got the second, and Shaq Evans was third. Both Roosevelt Davis and Devin Lucien also got a couple of looks. James tends to misjudge the ball in the air, but he's shown better hands and technique catching the ball.

Malcolm Jones had a much, much better day running the ball Tuesday than he has at any time I've seen him. He had a few runs where he ran through contact at the line of scrimmage and just kept his legs moving forward, rather than trying to scoot to the outside. Obviously, you'd want to see it in more than one practice, but he definitely looked the part of a big, powerful back on Tuesday.

When Jones wasn't getting the second team reps, Manfro was taking them. He hasn't lost much of a step in pads, and he's showing very good change of direction. With Hilliard out for most of the practice, the depth chart basically went Johnathan Franklin (until the knee bruise), Jones, Manfro, and Damien Thigpen (who also looked very good).

David Allen had his first really good moment of the spring, catching a few balls and getting absolutely walloped by Keenan Graham and Stan McKay on a couple of plays. He's one of those guys who sprints between plays, so it's good to see him get some meaningful touches.

Tre Hale, after having a miserable day snapping the ball on Saturday, was wildly improved on Tuesday. From what I saw, he didn't have a botched snap, and during 1 on 1's, he looked very good blocking Seali'i Epenesa and Brandon Willis, considering a week ago he was a defensive end.

Devin Lucien continues to be the most impressive wide receiver on the team. He has tremendous awareness of where the ball is at all times, and adjusts his routes to compensate. During 1 on 1's, he adjusted to a ball from Neuheisel that must have been ten yards short of the route, and managed to make a diving catch.

As we've said, Xavier Su'a-Filo isn't fully back in shape yet. During 1 on 1's, Damien Holmes got around him a couple of times, where Su'a-Filo just wasn't able to rotate quick enough. With a summer between now and the season, though, he should be fine. He still plays with good technique, and is still the quickest lineman UCLA has.

Torian White has some work to do on his body, just getting bigger and stronger, but he had some good moments in both 1 on 1's and the Oklahoma drill at the beginning of practice. He actually has pretty good technique off the snap, but it's just a matter of working on his body so that he can keep from being overpowered.

Brandon Willis, Kevin McReynolds, and Seali'i Epenesa are generally rotating through the first and second string at nose tackle. In Zumwalt's place, Keenan Graham took the majority of the snaps with the 1's, and in Abbott's place, Stan McKay was with the 1's.

Sheldon Price looks very good so far in spring. He had a couple of very nice pass breakups during one on one's with his back to the ball.

Damien Holmes made a few very nice plays during team drills where he beat Su'a-Filo around the edge for would-be sacks. He and Aaron Wallace both looked good blitzing into the back field.

Jim Mora Sr. was in attendance, as were Devin Fuller, Ishmael Adams, Randall Goforth, Keyshawn Johnson, and Sinbad.




Bruin Report Online Top Stories