They're talented. They're young. They're undisciplined. That's UCLA football in a nutshell for 2015. Led by true freshman quarterback Josh Rosen, the Bruins are 7-3 on the season with a 4-3 record in the Pac 12, but still control their own destiny in terms of winning the South. Beat Utah and USC and it's theirs. That's a tall task for an inconsistent team that looks like a national championship contender one week, and then a middling Pac 12 squad the next.
The Bruins do everything well. They can throw it with an array of weapons at Rosen's disposial, most notably Jordan Payton and Thomas Duarte. They've got one of the best backs in the country in Paul Perkins, a patient runner with deceptive speed and great cutback ability. They've got one of the top offensive lines in the conference, opening up holes for Perkins and keeping Rosen clean. They've got a front 7 led by Pac 12 defensive player of the year candidate Kenny Clark anchoring the center of the line. There are good linebackers like Jayon Brown who has been a tackling machine. The secondary is filled with talent, some young, some experienced. They've had the Pac 12's best kicker this season. What they don't do well is play consistently. Part of that is on the coaching staff and part of that is on the players, but UCLA is about as all over the map as any team in the country. At this point, you have no idea if you're going to get the good Bruins or the bad Bruins. It's like wondering if you're going to get the good Travis or the bad Travis.
Granted, the Bruins are banged up, as much as anybody in the country when it comes to their starters, especially on defense. That's part of the reason they've struggled at times. Still, there's plenty of talent that is often undisciplined, ranking towards the bottom of the country in penalties again, and unable to string together solid play for all 4 quarters. With Utah, at lesat you generally know what you're going to get. With UCLA, you'e got no idea from week to week. If good UCLA shows up, Utah will have a battle on their hands. If the bad UCLA shows up, the Utes should take care of business with ease.