Josh Rosen (Blair Angulo)

UCLA Spring Game Report

Apr. 29 -- UCLA held a game Saturday in Drake Stadium to wrap up its 2017 spring practice schedule, with quarterback Josh Rosen putting together a solid late-first-half touchdown drive after starting slow...

Bolu Olorunfunmi rushed for two touchdowns, including a dramatic late scamper, to guide the White Team to a 17-10 victory against the Blue Team in UCLA's spring game Saturday.

The power back amassed 88 yards on 14 carries, and had the go-ahead score on a 46-yard run with 1:37 remaining on the clock, bursting through the left side before cutting back to an open lane and outracing the secondary to the end zone.

Head coach Jim Mora admitted that the offensive play calls were very basic and vanilla, particularly given that it was a televised game and he didn't want to give away much to future opponents that might have tuned in, but he noted that he's been pleased with how the run game has progressed this spring. Andre James and Najee Toran -- two key components of a reconstructed offensive line -- were very solid Saturday, opening run lanes for the White Team backs and getting a big push near the goal line on an earlier Olorunfunmi touchdown.

Josh Rosen, meanwhile, manned the quarterback spot for the Blue Team in the first half. He started slow but found his rhythm, at one point completing nine straight, to finish 14-of-18 for 83 yards, a touchdown and an interception. His highlight play came with the clock winding down in the first half when he found his favorite target, veteran slot receiver Darren Andrews, on a post route in the end zone.

Though Rosen couldn't get much going early, the White Team defense had a lot to do with that. Adarius Pickett capped his impressive spring with yet another interception, picking off Rosen on the second drive. He was also in on several tackles and, when there were completions made, it was always in front of him without giving up extra yardage. Though Mora said the quarterbacks would be live, it was obvious that it didn't apply to Rosen, who might have been sacked a couple times or brought down if real-game situations.

The White Team had a lot of the same issues as Rosen through the air, mostly due to a number of drops, but did have a large gain on a wide receiver reverse pass from Jordan Lasley to Alex Van Dyke that woke up the crowd at Drake Stadium. On the other side, Nate Starks also wooed those in attendance with his half-back pass to Caleb Wilson for big yardage.

It was clear that Mora and offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch wanted to put on a show for those braving the sun without showing too much of the new scheme.

Devon Modster (Blair Angulo)

Devon Modster was up and down during his few series leading the White Team offense. He made some nice third-down throws, but was mostly inaccurate. There was one play where Demetric Felton broke free up the seam with nothing but green in front of him, yet he had to reach back for Modster's throw and couldn't grab it. That was probably the most notable drop of the afternoon, which surely had fans wondering if they're going to see much of what they saw in a forgettable 2016. On another play in the red zone, Modster airmailed an attempt to a streaking tight end and finished a respectable 7-of-14 for 66 yards. Mora said he's been pleased with how the battle for the backup quarterback spot has unraveled, and it appears that Modster would have the slight edge heading into the summer workouts.

Matt Lynch backed up Rosen and, again, showed some potential, with Mora even saying that he might have to find a way to get Lynch on the field in some capacity (even special teams) because he makes things happen. Lynch looked very comfortable scanning the field and, when he had to take off, seemed to really thrive, making defenders miss and lowering his shoulder to pick up extra yards. Although Rosen might not have been live to opposing defenders, Lynch appeared to embrace that challenge and didn't shy away from physicality. He was credited with 22 yards on five carries.

True freshman Austin Burton backed up Modster and has some way to go. With two redshirt freshman ahead of him, though, it looks like he'll have plenty of time to develop. On one play, he was chased down from behind by fellow early enrollee Jaelan Phillips, who easily pushed him down for a sack that had Mora grinning from ear to ear. Phillips is relentless in pursuit, finishes plays and is still improving his pass-rushing moves, so the expectations for him should be sky high. He gave provided another example of his star potential early when he pressured Modster into throwing off balance, which almost led to an interception for Josh Woods.

Jaelan Phillips (Blair Angulo)

QUICK HITS

-- Starting fullback Giovanni Gentosi was awarded a scholarship in front of the team during a surprise halftime ceremony. Defensive lineman Osa Odighizuwa and left guard Andre James were recognized as most improved on defense and offense, respectively, with Odighizuwa getting a big sack on Lynch when the quarterback tried to take off up the middle. The defensive coaches love his versatility...

https://twitter.com/UCLAFootball/status/858449114589126657

-- Starting right tackle Kenny Lacy appeared to get rolled up and had his right leg examined by trainers before limping off. He did not return, but it didn't sound like Mora was too concerned on the injury front...

-- Converted linebacker Brandon Burton played safety, probably since Nathan Meadors was out, but left the game early after sustaining an upper body injury while tackling Jordan Wilson...

-- True freshman tight end Jimmy Jaggers missed the game due to a concussion...

-- Running back Sotonye Jamabo was not in pads midway through the second half. Defensive lineman Marcus Moore also sat out the final quarter and a half...

-- The teams were led by honorary head coaches Amanda Cromwell of UCLA women’s soccer (Blue Team) and Valorie Kondos Field of UCLA women’s gymnastics (White Team). Kondos Field was given a Gatorade bath after the final whistle, while Cromwell was given an opportunity to kick a point-after attempt and made one of her two tries...

-- As we had seen most of the spring, Fisch incorporated a number of end-around runs that had varied levels of success. That, along with the accompanying misdirection and play-action roll outs, appear to be big staples of this scheme, though when they were sniffed out, it means major trouble for the offense...

-- Kenny Young said the White Team didn't get anything for its win, but he did secure dinner from Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles in a friendly bet with Meadors...

-- J.J. Molson made his 22-yard field goal attempt, while walk-on Andrew Strauch made one from 37 yards out but missed one from 17...

-- Both Dechaun Holiday and Denzel Fisher were spotted on the sideline with their right arms in slings. Left tackle Alex Akingbulu made his first public appearance of the spring, lugging around a crutch...

-- True freshman Darnay Holmes returned kicks and punts for the Blue Team, while Damian Alloway and Jordan Lasley handled duties for the White Team...

-- UCLA resumes its offseason workouts Monday at 5 a.m., along with player-run practices, which Fisch said would be massive for his unit as it continues to get comfortable with the scheme.


2017 UCLA Football Showcase – Apr. 29 Drake Stadium

 

Scoring

                                      1               2        3     4              FInal

Blue                           0               7        3     0                 10

White                       0               7        0  10                 17

 

First Quarter

   No scoring

Second Quarter

   White 2:00 – Olorunfunmi, Bolu two-yard run (Strauch, Andrew kick)

   Blue 0:04 – Andrews, Darren 13-yard pass from Rosen, Josh (Cromwell, Amanda kick)

Third Quarter

   Blue 2:26 – Molson, JJ 22-yard field goal

Fourth Quarter

  White 4:42 – Strauch, Andrew 37-yard field goal

  White 1:37 – Olorunfunmi, Bolu 46-yard run (Strauch kick)

 

Individual Statistics Leaders

Rushing

Nate Starks (b) 6-33 yards

Matt Lynch (b) 5-22 yards

 

Bolu Olorunfunmi (w) 14-88 yards (2 TD)

Jalen Starks (w) 8-22

 

QB Passing

Josh Rosen (b) 14-18-83 yards 1 TD, 1 int.

Matt Lynch (b) 3-7-14 yards 0 TD, 0 int.

 

Devon Modster (w) 7-14-66 yards  0 TD, 0 int.

Austin Burton (w) 4-5-24 yards  0 TD, 0 int.

 

Receiving

Caleb Wilson (b) 2-59

Darren Andrews (b) 5-32 yards (1 TD)

Eldridge Massington (b) 4-30

Soso Jamabo (b) 5-18

 

Alex VanDyke (w) 3-47

Jordan Wilson (w) 3-24

Bolu Olorunfunmi (w) 2-22

 

Interception – Adarius Pickett, white team

 

Notes – Honorary Head Coaches: Amanda Cromwell (UCLA women’s soccer coach) – Blue team ; Valorie Kondos Field (UCLA women’s gymnastics coach) – White team


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