Dawg Blog - UCLA 21, UW 17

Good teams find ways to win. UCLA found a way to win tonight despite the Huskies stopping Maurice Drew and, for the most part, Drew Olson. One final drive proved to be the difference as UCLA took a hard fought 21-17 win in Pasadena.

End of Third Q: UCLA is starting to put things together. Lewis is such a good tight end, surprised he only has five catches tonight. A pass interference call against UW has them backed right up against the wall heading into the fourth quarter.

14:56/4th: As the 2005 UCLA Women's water polo team is getting recognized for their national championship, the game goes on...literally. The Bruins' touchdown again brings their deficit to three and again gives Washington's offense a chance to ring the bell and answer the call.

13:46/4th: Craig Chambers. That's all that needs to be said about that. Rankin and James need to continue to pound away at the Bruins' D.

11:54/4th: Key penalties again crush promising drives. It's been a constant theme all year, and there's no reason to think the referees would bail them out. As is stands, they got the call right, but it's very frustrating to see a flag being thrown, only to later come back with an 'Ah shucks, we didn't mean to throw it.'

11:19/4th: Phenomenal job by Sean Douglas and the UW punt coverage team, burying the Bruins deep. Now is when winners capitalize on the opponent's poor field position and makes them pay.

9:24/4th: Now, at 3rd and 14, is when you contain and force a punt.

8:45/4th: A huge defensive play and a chance to get some field position. Marlon Wood with the sure grab on UCLA's side of the field, I wouldn't be surprised if Wood is now Washington's starting PR for the rest of the season. Now Stanback and company need to milk some clock.

7:40/4th: Stanback tried to make something work, but that three-and-out was most unwelcome. He still doesn't have the feel you're looking for when trying to make something on a busted play, but it's coming. Now, back inside their 20 again, the Bruins go back to work.

7:05/4th: The Bruins have been watching too much UW ball. They make a play, then shoot themselves in the foot with a penalty. And they aren't coming up with big plays when they need a big play.

6:25/4th: The Dawgs are in uncharted waters now, a lead late on the road against a ranked opponent. This is where Stanback needs to run the 4-minute offense just like he does in practice. A 15-yard interference call against UCLA on UW's fair catch by Wood just helps with the cause.

5:27/4th: Dawgs score on a brilliant Rankin run, only to kill themselves with a hold. Classic. They really need to keep plugging away, they are only stopping themselves at this point.

4:46/4th: More penalties. When will it end?

3:54/4th: If it weren't for the fact that they are grinding their guts out and still have a lead, I would think Washington is in self-destruct mode right now. Douglas punts to the Bruin 27. This is the game.

2:50/4th: Dashon Goldson comes up huge for Washington, thwarting a third-down attempt. Will the Bruins go for it on 4th and 1? Yup, and complete it.

2:28/4th: C.J. Wallace keeps the Bruins from taking the lead as Marcus Everett tip-toes the sideline. UCLA is inside the 10 and they are knocking.

1:40/4th: UCLA thinks they scored, and time is running. They are at the one and this call by the refs might actually be hurting UW more than helping.

1:08/4th: The Bruins score a touchdown and another late 4th-quarter drive kills the Huskies. The extra point means Washington has to score 6 or the game is over. Some UW players are putting their helmets up in the air, most aren't. Frankly, I think they are stunned.

:55/4th: The last thing you need on the drive - a sack. The education of Isaiah Stanback continues...
Halftime: It's been all Washington so far and the stats bear that out: 17 minutes of possession, 38 plays run for 197 total yards (100 rush, 97 pass). The defense has forced two Drew Olson picks and has only given up 27 yards on the ground and 104 yards total. Maurice Drew with 14 yards? Has to be a typo, right? Despite the numerous positives, the key stat is that those two UCLA turnovers yielded zero points for the Huskies. Washington has to make them pay when the other team gives the ball away. Well, my 51-21 UCLA prediction can be thrown out the window. who thought this was going to be a defensive struggle?

12:50/3rd: UCLA trying to establish it early with a throw down the middle to Marcedes Lewis. Caesar Rayford doesn't give up on third down and takes Olson down to thwart the Bruin's initial second-half effort. Gunheim is also getting some pressure in the backfield.

12:25/3rd: Could it be 2003 all over again? Russo just whiffs on catching the punt, ball goes a good ten yards downfield and the Bruins recover. Olson immediately goes deep and connects.

11:35/3rd: Olson makes UW pay for their error with a touchdown to Lewis, a huge target. Now we'll see what the Huskies are made of. If they can come back after that and put points on the board, they just might have something...starting at their own 35 because of the Bruins kicking it out of bounds doesn't hurt their cause.

11:12/3rd: Rankin goes unconscious off-tackle. As he's going down the field and stopping and starting, my only thought is, 'Please don't get hit from behind while carrying that think like a loaf of bread!'. James adds 7 more on top of it.

9:13/3rd: Feel kind of bad for Lappano. He's hamstrung inside the red zone, not a ton of options to go to. Good play call on the backside screen to Kirton, but the linemen just aren't out there fast enough to make it work. The resulting miss by Knudson on a 28-yard field goal must feel like one of those mules kicking him in the stomach back in North Carolina. The Huskies are playing their guts out and just can't buy themselves a break.

8:04/3rd: The Dawgs got some help on a Marcus Everett drop on third down. Five more yards backwards for the Bruins on a false start. The offense has to get this ball and drive the field. They need to give the D a break and they need to re-establish the tone of the game. Marlon Wood caught the punt, not a huge surprise there.

6:32/3rd: After a great catch by Craig Chambers for a first down, the Husky offensive machine looked positively jumbled, having to call timeout after a myriad of moves from the sideline. We'll see if taking a timeout this early comes back to haunt Willingham.

3:21/3rd: Kenny James running up the field with authority for 6! But now the dreaded review. Funny thing is, the review should be moot because he crossed the plane the first time. If they overturn this one, it's going to be as bad as the overturn the Pac-10 made on Reggie Bush's catch in the first quarter of their game earlier today against Arizona State. The ruling was given and it's totally different than any of us up here would have come up with. Amazing. But the bonus is that UW still has the ball on the 1 and two downs to punch it in. UCLA just took a time out of their own, and that's never a bad thing for UW.

3:18/3rd: Stanback calls his own number (as it should have been) and scores. The UCLA fans are still livid at the review call. That drive was just what Dr. Willingham ordered - took up a bunch of time, mixed the run and pass well, and finished with a touchdown. For the time being, the Huskies have taken back the momentum of the game.

2:46/3rd: Hopoi goes limping off the field. Man, that kind of an ankle issue doesn't look good. Lobos is in to shore things up. Looks like are back to their 'bend but don't break' ways... C.J. Wallace is once again all over the field (like he has been all year).

End of Third Q: UCLA is starting to put things together. Lewis is such a good tight end, surprised he only has five catches tonight. A pass interference call against UW has them backed right up against the wall heading into the fourth quarter.

14:28/2nd: And all that investment pays off with a 20-yard Kenny James touchdown run around end. Great to see the young man from Dos Palos bounce back from a shoulder injury. If early returns are any indication, Washington feels like they can run against the Bruins. The Huskies have thus far out-gained UCLA 144-16. It's as dominant a performance as the last time Washington came down to the Rose Bowl. What happened in the second half of that game remains in the 'unmentionable' category for me, so I hope they can improve on 2003's effort.

13:24/2nd: The defense gets the Bruins right where they want them and then an old nemesis creeps in. Well executed screen-play by UCLA moves them out of a hole. Is it going to be more of 'bend but don't break'?

9:57/2nd: A couple of first downs, but no damage done by the Bruins. Add to that a flat-shank by the Bruin kicker, and the Rose Bowl is getting a little frosty.

9:42/2nd: Just when the forgotten man (James Sims) looks to have risen from the dead, a fumble on a beautifully designed pass-and-run probably has the senior in the Dawghouse for a while longer. The Huskies just aren't good enough to make mistakes and beat a top-20 team on the road.

8:05/2nd: Perhaps the Dawgs are starting to get good enough on defense to make their own luck? Josh Okoebor with a pick on a serious hot potato has Washington's offense back in business. Will Sims make another appearance? Hmmmm...maybe this will be one of those situations where the coaches go back to him just to show they have confidence in him...

6:51/2nd: Interesting gamble by Willingham in picking up the punt and doing it again...got the punt he wanted, just not the return. In all, the difference in the two plays was one yard.

6:18/2nd: Bruins take a page from Fisher DeBerry's playbook, go no-huddle.

5:04/2nd: UCLA just not finding much on offense, but they BURIED UW at their own 2 yard line with a phenomenal punt. As bad as his last punt was, this punt was the total opposite.

3:11/2nd: Stanback just found a UCLA lineman he needs to add to his Christmas card list, because that pass he threw up deep in his own end was an absolute GIFT! Not sure what Lappano was looking at when he made that call. And the resulting touchdown by Drew on a punt return nullified by a block in the back feels more Husky-like than Bruin-like.

1:55/2nd: Both teams are kind of stinking it up, not playing very crisp ball.

1:37/2nd: The Huskies make another play, tipping an Olson pass and Lobendahn catches it like a fly ball. The boo birds are starting to perch around the Rose Bowl.

:59/2nd: Stanback is making GREAT decisions right now. Corey Williams is becoming known more for his drops than his catches early on in 2005. That pass from Isaiah was a bullet right on the money. As a receiver you can't ask for anything more than that. That could be the play that takes points off the board before half.

:31/2nd: Not sure why they even tried a 55-yarder for Knudson, that kick was not close. If Williams catches that pass, it's an easy attempt. As it stands, the Bruins take a knee and the UCLA fans are disgusted. I doubt Willingham could have drawn up a better half of football for his guys, except for more points. They could always use more points.
40:00 before kickoff: Baba O'Reilly blaring in the Rose Bowl as both teams stretch...glorious night weather-wise, except for the fires - you can definitely smell them.

23:00 before kickoff: Hasty getting his first look in the purple and gold? He's getting some carries during pre-game. Also, sounds like Matt Fountaine is going to give his bruised sternum a go. Hopefully he'll make it through unscathed.

10:00 before kickoff: Just looking at some of the scores, the biggest one that jumps out is Florida-Alabama. What a pasting. Next in line is Notre Dame-Purdue. Charlie Weis is for real, any questions? Next is the Colorado-Oklahoma State score. 34-0 Buffs? Barnett's teams have always been good, but that score is out of hand. Gundy has his work cut out for him in Stillwater.

3:00 before kickoff: The Bruins come out of their tunnel with VanHagar blaring. I can't say too much about Husky Stadium feeling empty because there are whole sections of the Rose Bowl completely vacant. Watching Hasty sprint out of their tunnel, you have to think he's going to get some carries. Sampson is wearing #35.

Kickoff: Washington wins the toss and elects to take the ball. Willingham is making an early statement with that kind of trust in his offense in a hostile situation. 'Welcome to the Jungle' is now the music of choice.

12:37/1st: Off-setting penalties negate a huge play by Shackelford. Just another example of Washington really hurting itself with mistakes.

11:33/1st: It's pretty apparent with the first punt of the evening that Bob Simmons wants nothing to do with Maurice Drew. A good kick by Sean Douglas downed inside UCLA's 20.

10:12/1st: Very nice defensive sequence to begin with. The Bruins have a lot of success with their stretch running plays and zone blocking, something UW will have to find an answer for.

8:26/1st: Nice to see some more variety from Lappano...stretch option with Stanback keeping - very nice. And then Isaiah launches a bullet to Russo downfield.

6:45/1st: Knudson's 36-yarder is good, but roughing call. Take the points off the board? This early, you'd think it's a no-brainer and Willingham agrees. Now the Huskies have first-and-goal inside the 10.

5:00/1st: Three plays later, including a great individual effort from Stanback on a designed keeper, and the Dawgs are just outside the one and pondering their options. Taking the points here would be the smart move and they need some good things to happen for them on the road early to set a positive tempo, but they are 1-3! Go for it Tyrone! He doesn't, and the 18-yarder is good. The biggest plus out of taking the points off the board the first time was the two-minutes-plus UCLA's offense WASN'T on the field.

4:02/1st: A great 3-and-out for the UW defense. The front guys aren't getting a ton of pressure on Olson, but he does not seem settled at all and the Huskies are in all the right places so far. Whoever is returning punts (Russo) HAS TO CATCH THEM!

:58/1st: I hate to say this (jinx!), but Washington is totally controlling the tempo of this game so far. UCLA's offense is nowhere to be seen and Stanback is running the offense cooly and confidently ala Air Force. Now they just need to see some points on the board for their efforts.

Dawgman.com Top Stories