Bell on the Season, His Career

Senior tailback Kahlil Bell talked this week at practice about being slowed by injury this year, the ups and downs of the season as well as his career at UCLA, what he's striving for the rest of the way, and his opinion of where the program is headed...

Kahlil Bell spoke to us at practice this week.

On his performance in the Washington game

"My thoughts weren't really focused on my performance, it was focused on our performance. As an offense, we did some things we haven't been able to do pretty much all season. We ran the ball consistently, we dominated the line of scrimmage, and the offensive line played really well at the point of contact. I think that was the most encouraging thing. Two touchdowns, ninety-whatever yards, that's all going to take care of itself. But the thing I like to see is we're getting better. We got better last week. And now we need to build off it this week because Arizona State is going to be hungry and it's going to be a tough fought game."

On what a consistent running game gives the offense:

"It gives us a better chance to win football games. When you're a balanced offense or you have the threat of the run, it opens everything up. In my opinion, I think football's a running game and if you don't establish a threat of a run game, there's nothing you can do. You get very one tracked and a lot of teams can scheme you up and play you in a different way. But I feel like we're getting better and we're going to get better."

How close are you to being back to 100%?

"Close. I'm not real big on numbers but I'm pretty much close to where I was. I think my explosiveness is lacking a little bit but we got this bye week to kind of rest up and try to get me a little bit closer to 100 percent and the coaches are going to take care of me. I feel good. I feel like I'm getting close to where I was. I just got to work on getting a little bit more of my explosiveness and my top-end speed back, but I feel like my legs are coming back under me which is a good sign."

On how his career at UCLA has been:

"It's been a very difficult one. I guess the only phrase I can use to describe it is kind of like a beautiful ride. Got that from the Dewey Cox movie. As in anything in life, you're going to experience your ups and downs, your highs and lows. I've been through a lot at UCLA and still going through a lot but I think everything happens for a reason and it's made me a better man because of it and a better football player because of it. I've enjoyed my time here. I've enjoyed the opportunity and the blessing it's been to play for a university like this. I'll a cherish it but hopefully it's not over. Hopefully I've got some more playing to do."

On the mentality going into the last two games:

"Win, by any means. I'm a senior, I want to get to a bowl game. I don't want to be on the first team since I've been here not to go to a bowl game. We're going to try and get that done. I want to get to post-season play and I want to go out putting this program where it needs to be, help build this program. We can't do it like we wanted to this year but we can help start something great. UCLA is going to be great, I promise you. It will be great one day. I want to be part of the group that helped build it."

On what a bowl berth would mean to the team:

"It would give us a sense of pride, really. We've been embarassed a lot, we've had some close games. We haven't been performing well. Speaking from an offensive standpoint, we haven't been performing well. But if we can turn it around and get these three games -- these next two games starting with Arizona State and then the SC game -- and we get to a bowl game, hat's like having my birthday all over again. We're going to do everything we can to get it done. I'm going to do everything as a senior to make sure everyone else is going to help get it done and make it happen."

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