UCLA Coach Jim Mora Said He'll Allow Josh Rosen to Decide On Availability for Wazzu Game

Oct. 12 -- UCLA head coach Jim Mora provided an update on sophomore quarterback Josh Rosen heading into the Washington State game and spoke about the team's ability to bounce back...

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Opening statement:

We talked about Monday about how they've bounced back, and it's been two good practices and bounced back. That's a good sign. Focus, energy and attention to detail. That's encouraging. 

On Josh Rosen's status for Saturday:

If he's ready to play, he'll play, if he's not, he won't. That's my standard answer to that. He's a competitive guy.  He wants to play and we just have to make sure we make the right decision, not only short term but long term.

On how much input Rosen will have on the decision to play him:

Quite a bit. Not only Josh, but our medical team is outstanding and his dad is a doctor so we have him surrounded by people who understand what's going on. At the end of the day, you help him make the best decision.  If it's safe.  We're not going to make a decision that will put him in further jeopardy. He's been out here both days.

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On if he has the policy, 'don't practice, don't play':

No, I don't. It's different in every situation. It can depend on the position you play, your level of experience.  A lot of different variables go into that. I don't have a firm policy, you paint yourself in a corner.

On his confidence level in Mike Fafaul:

Very high. He's been in here in practice and done a nice job. It's always harder for a backup to go into the game during the game because he hasn't gotten enough reps. With Josh not out here at times, Mike has gotten more reps than he would and I think that's gone into his confidence. He's been here a long time, he's very smart, kept himself mentally sharp. We don't have to pare anything down, not for him. Sometimes you might pare it down to focus on specifics.

On if he's seen a change in him this week:

Confidence. Even though it wasn't a beautiful performance with the numbers, it gives him confidence, so the next time he goes out there, it's not the first time. It's very similar to Andre James, going in and getting 33 plays against Arizona and then being ready last week against Arizona State. It helps your psyche.

On going with Randall Goforth at cornerback last week:

Nate Meadors got hurt in pregame so he wasn't full speed. We knew it was going to be a little of a track meet and Randall showed his versatility. Worked at safety all week, really hadn't taken a single snap at corner, 15 minutes before the game when we knew Nate wasn't going to be full speed, we put Randall out there and that's a credit to Randall. Not only that, he played outstanding.

On if he expects a full stable of running backs:

Yes, I expect all five of them to be ready to go. Plus the fullbacks. So we'll have all seven back.

On Takk McKinley lining up as a linebacker:

It worked well. We ran that little package about 5-6 times and were effective 4-5 times. They completed one on us. Every week you're trying to find advantages for some protections, find a matchup you want, always searching for that. He was lined up as a linebacker, but technically he was a rusher, just rushing from a different alignment.

On the defense being on the field less:

I think that's something that has been overlooked and it's helpful. We're playing good defense right now and have been since BYU. Not perfect, but good and gaining confidence. There was an element, remember last year against Colorado, we had 108 plays. But you saw even Saturday night and the week before, the more you send them out there with 3-and-outs, they need a chance to catch their breath. But it's definitely helped us.

On Tom Bradley being in the box:

I think it has been really good for us. He moved up for the BYU game.  It takes him away from the emotion of the sideline, gives him a better vantage point, our communication is clear and crisp. Between series, he can draw things out, communicate it down to Scott (White), Angus (McClure) or Demetrice (Martin), I think it's a real positive. 

On getting him away from the emotion of the sideline:

It's a positive thing. If you ever put on the headphones, you'd be amazed with what goes on, on defense. Everywhere I've ever been. Offense is a little more calm, you have to give the guy a chance to make the calls. But every where I've been, I've been in a lot of headphones, and some of the stuff is insane. At times, not all times, but at times. At times it's like insanity. Then you have the fans and people around you to move yourself.  To go in a quieter environment, it helps you focus. And its helped Tom focus.

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