Bullough on Washington, Blitzing

UCLA Defensive Coordinator Chuck Bullough talked after the Washington game about the defense's performance, the increased pressure and blitzing, and being put in tough spots with the turnovers...

Defensive Coordinator Chuck Bullough:


So, you lit them up a little bit this week …

‘'Yeah, got after them a little bit. You know, we went into the game and didn't quite know what (Jake Locker) was going to be able to do and he ended up looking pretty healthy. We had a healthy Jake Locker, which is always tough. He got out on us a little bit. We'd have them covered and he takes it down and he's a Mercedes, he's big and strong. He has that aspect. You can have everybody covered, but he can pull it down and run and he's hard to get down. He's like an extra running back back there.''


The questions about his health made you think you could get some stuff done there with the blitzes?

‘'As a defensive staff, we just felt that he was going to play. He had two weeks to recover, he's a young strong kid. Kids recover fast at that age. Me and you, we don't recover that fast. We'd be out for five months.''

The pressure, then, was it something that you saw, that they didn't handle it well?

‘'Nah, we mixed in the whole time. We mixed in zone, then we mixed in some blitzes, and then we mixed in some man, trying to keep him off balance in terms of what he's seeing. And when we started running some of the blitzes, they started coming free, so then you feel confident that you can come. Obviously, we schemed up some things, some blitzes, during the week seeing their protections, which everybody does, and they ended up working for us.''

Will we see more of that these last three games?

‘'Well, it depends on your opponent. That's why you do your weekly study. I haven't watched a single play of Washington State so I have no idea what they do, but as you get into it that's what you do as a defensive staff, you see what they do and then you try to scheme stuff up against them.''


The defense was put in some tough spots with all the turnovers …

‘'We always talk about it to our guys, if you they a turnover, most teams think about it as, ‘Oh, God, we have to go out there.' We always say, ‘Put the ball down.' Our defense, when we're on the bench and we see a turnover, just run out there and say, ‘Put the ball down. Let's go.' That's what we stress to the guys and they responded. Just play ball. Put the ball down and we'll stop them, because you've got to be able to respond to those turnovers, which we did today.''


Did the last drive last week play into how you called the last drive this week?

‘'Nah, you've got to play each game as it is, how it unfolds. They were handling our pressure so we started bringing a little more pressure than we had before. But as you go through the game, you have to get a feel for it, how they're doing. Last week, it goes back to making the plays. If we make that, it's a different game. It's all about making plays. That's what we preach to our players. Last week we had an opportunity and didn't quite make it and this week, we made it. That's what it all comes down to in the end and the players are good with that, they understand that.''


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