UCLA QB Josh Rosen Happy With Second Half Performance Against Arizona

Oct. 1 -- UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen spoke about his performance against Arizona, meeting the challenge of Jim Mora in the second half, the integration of Theo Howard and more...


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On what changed from the first half to second half:

Schematically, everything was working, but we just weren't winning our 1on1 battles. It's more a point of will and pride than X's and O's. We pulled it together, sharpened it up and you saw it in the second half.

On bouncing back in the second half:

That was probably my best half to date. Personally I felt good about it. Mistakes were made but I feel like I moved on from them and went on to the next play. It was a positive note for our offense to get to and work beyond.


On Theo Howard:

You're more athletic when you know what to do. Sometimes it's a lot for Theo, not just a new offense but a college offense. Sometimes in practice he's not as athletic as he really is because he's thinking. But once he knows what he's doing, he's insanely athletic. You saw when he got the ball in his hands, he can make incredible things happen. A lot of young guys do, me last year, but when you start thinking too much, you reduce your athleticism and talent. 

On if they saw that from him with his scrambling:

Yeah, I think a lot, but then sometimes, I have to be 'screw it' and play. Marques Tuiasosopo's brand is just play ball, and that's what he preaches. That second half, I got back to my old form and I felt good about that.

On if the early struggles came from pre-season hype:

Nah. A lot of moving parts. It took us a while to get on to it and we can make some good progress. It shows you how insane college sports is with all the wins and losses in the Pac-12 itself, from UW to Stanford to Arizona to BYU in the mix, they're not in the Pac-12 but they played everyone. Everyone is beating each other. That's why you can't look into rankings and scores, you just have to play every week as it is and try to come out on top.

On Nate Starks:

I thought he did really well. He's a physical runner and decisive. I can't really grade him too much because i'm trying to carry out fakes. I just see the result of the play. I'll answer it better the next time. From what I saw, he did really well.

On what it takes to put it all together:

If I could tell you that, we'd be doing it. There is no special recipe.  Our motto is PSW, power, speed and will. We have the first two. The third is that intangible we're fighting and striving for.

On putting in more preparation:

I think my quarterback coach helps me out the most. I put in a lot of work earlier this year, but you have to work smart, not hard. I'm learning how to break down film more efficiently and what to look for.  A lot of time you'll be watching football and not film. You'll be just watching the game. So knowing specific things to look for and how to study, Tui has been really effective in bettering me as a quarterback and student. If you're just watching games and film, you don't know what to look for and you're useless.

On if he's happy with his performance:

Yes, I'm very happy with this outcome. It wasn't perfect, but the way in which we responded and kept rolling. We had a few drops at receiver, but the way we came back and responded was impressive. And that's what I'm excited about. In the quarterback room, we have a saying, BFM, 'bare frickin minimum'. When things moderately clicked, the BFM was 45 points and that's what we did. You just hope to not get too hopeful about the future too late in the season, at some point it's got to happen now.  We just had week five and going in to week six, there is not much time left. We really have to start clicking now.  The new offense isn't an excuse anymore because it's not new. There isn't a chemistry issue, it just has to start happening now and we have to start clicking on special teams, offense and defense now. 

On how much he watches other quarterbacks:

Not as much when they're playing. I'll see highlights and if they play an opponent of ours, I'll watch them against their defense. But they play on Saturday's. At the same times we do. And at the hotel room, I'm not trying to focus on other games, I'm trying to lock into our situation and will maybe watch a movie.

On if it's a competition with other quarterbacks:

Absolutely. Not a direct competition, but more just competitiveness, when we see each other in the offseason and talk mess. Brandon Dawkins is a close friend, I love him, he's one of the funniest guys I've ever met. He played with Jordan Payton at Oaks Christian so you just get a little bragging rights.


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