Saturday Practice in the Dark

Practice ends in the dark, and generally even when you could see it was clearly a session the defense dominated, with four interceptions and number of other great defensive plays...

With UCLA football practice it's tough to keep track of the scorecard of the players that are back practicing or not, and those in between.

Most of the same guys that were out were still out Saturday night. Eric Kendricks dressed and participated in some drills. Jovan Williams dressed, but then didn't last long, took the pads off and left practice.

Receiver Shaquelle Evans left practice about halfway through.

Returning to practice was Malcolm Jones, and participating for the first time in actual periods were offensive linemen Torian White and Colby Cyburt.

Tight end Ian Taubler made a visit to the injury tent.

Coach Jim Mora addresses the injured in the post-practice audio interview, and actually believes they'll get back some more offensive linemen for tomorrow's practice (which is at 4:00).

Saturday's practice ran into the dark, and you literally couldn't see the last 11-on-11 of practice.

Since he was named the starting quarterback, Brett Hundley hasn't done very well. He had an up and down first practice Saturday and then a fairly poor one for the second session, throwing three interceptions.

It appeared Richard Brehaut continued to get second-string reps and did fairly well. Kevin Prince had some good moments but also threw a pick. Jerrry Neuheisel probably had the best 11-on-11 drive of the practice, but take into consideration he was doing it against mostly third- and fourth-string defensive players.

It was a pretty overall fun and entertaining practice, though, with quite a few 7-on-7, 11-on-11 and one-on-ones.

Offensively the player who probably had the best day was diminutive walk-on receiver Roosevelt Davis, who had probably a half-dozen great receptions.

Pretty close to Davis in terms of wide receiver performance was Devin Lucien, who made a number of athletic grabs.

But actually, a number of walk-on receivers had a good session, including Jerry Rice, Logan Sweet and Tyler Scott. Sweet and Scott have a chance to be a part of the lower end of the receiver depth chart.

Perhaps one of the best routes of the night was by Kenny Walker, who zigged and zagged his defender to get a lot of separation and some oohs and aahs from the crowd.

A great rivalry has developed between receiver Jerry Johnson and cornerback Aaron Hester with the two battling against each other on most of the reps in the one-on-ones and the team periods.

Jordan Payton had a couple of good catches, but on one reception receiver coach Eric Yarber actually came across the entire width of the field to emphasize to Payton to finish the play.

The offensive line had 9 bodies with the addition of White and Cyburt. There was a great deal of juggling of players and positions, but generally the first string was Xavier Su'a-Filo, Ben Wysocki, Jacob Brendel, Carl Hulick and Brett Downey.

It was, though, more a night for the defense and the secondary, totaling five interceptions and quite a few great break-ups.

Tevin McDonald got the first pick of Hundley, stepping in beautifully on a hard-thrown ball over the middle.

Linebacker Keenan Graham got the second pick on Hundley, snagging a poorly-thrown ball. Linebacker Ryan Hoffmeister got the third Hundley interception on a tipped ball.

Freshman safety Taylor Lagace intercepted a Prince pass.

Other good defensive moments:

-- Safety Brandon Sermons had a few nice break-ups for the session.

-- Ishmael Adams was good in coverage on a couple of reps.

- Hester, even after getting trash-talked by coach Yarber and tweaking his ankle, kept coming back for more, stopping down receiver after receiver.

-- Owamagbe Odighizuwa knocked down a pass.

-- Aramide Olaniyan blew up an offensive lineman on a pass rush.

-- Safety Anthony Jefferson stepped up and had some nice break-ups.

-- Defensive lineman Cassius Marsh registered a safety on a tackle for loss in the 11-on-11.

Bryce Perkins, the 2015 quarterback prospect and the younger brother of Bruin freshman running back Paul Perkins, was in attendance.


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