The Early Glimpse: Cougars vs. Bruins

SAY THIS about UCLA coach Jim Mora, who brings his 3-3 Bruins to Pullman this weekend: there’s no mincing of words. “We’ve just been so putrid on offense the last four weeks,” he told reporters following a 23-20 loss at Arizona State on Saturday.

“… unable to run the ball, unable to protect the passer. It’s very, very, very, very disappointing, so that’s really all I have to say on that,” he said, before adding that he and his staff are “doing a horrible job.”

UCLA is one of only three FBS teams (Texas State and Miami-Ohio are the others) that average fewer than 3 yards per rushing attempt.

But the pressing issue at the moment is standout quarterback Josh Rosen’s health.

He left the ASU game in the first quarter with a leg injury and then returned in the third quarter to lead the Bruins to three scores before leaving late in the fourth quarter with what appeared to be an injury to his throwing shoulder (or possibly his right wrist).

  • KICKOFF: 7:30 pm
  • THE LINE: Cougs by 1 1/2 to open, now 4 1/2
  • THE SERIES: UCLA leads 39-20-1

Again, Mora was succinct with reporters: "Josh is beat up. He’ just in general beat up. He’s taken some horrible hits because we can't protect for him.”

Whether, or how much, Rosen plays against the Cougars will be question No. 1 this week. Oddsmakers, however, didn’t shy away from putting a line on the game — Cougs by 4 1/2 as of this morning — so that may suggest the sophomore will be fine.

If he can’t go, the Bruins’ backup man is senior Mike Fafaul, a one time walk on. He went 3 for 11 for 44 yards, no TDs and two INTs against ASU.

He has thrown 18 career passes.

Sign up for Cougfan!
Why join?

THE BRUINS: They were a pre-season favorite for the Pac-12 South crown, with a brand new "power running game," but are currently fifth in their division with a 3-3 overall mark and 1-2 record in conference play. They have victories over UNLV, BYU and Arizona, and losses to Texas A&M, Stanford and ASU.

LAST SEASON: WSU won in dramatic fashion in Pasadena, as Luke Falk connected with Gabe Marks on a 21-yard scoring aerial to lift the Cardiac Cougs to another come-from-behind win, 31-27. The win elevated the Cougars to 7-3. UCLA came into that game ranked No. 18.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING: The Cougars rank No. 9 in the nation in total offense, averaging 530.6 yards per game. The Bruins are No. 55, averaging 427.8. In total defense, UCLA ranks No. 25, surrendering 342.5 yard per game while the Cougars are No. 64, giving up an average 399 hashes per game.

Luke Falk is No. 4 in the country in passing yards per game (370.4) and Rosen is No. 13 (319.2).

FAMILIAR FACES: UCLA’s special teams analyst is former WSU graduate assistant Chris Reinert, who spent last season working with Cougar quarterbacks and assisting with game planning. The year prior he worked with Cougar defensive backs and special teams.

UCLA has no players on the roster who prepped in the state of Washington.

The Bruins’ passing game coordinator is former UW star and assistant coach Marques Tuiasosopo and their receivers coach is former Idaho star Eric Yarber.

RELATED: What we learned from the Pac-12 in Week Six

Cougfan Top Stories