UCLA Football: 10 Things We Learned from the Bruins' Loss to the Beavers
The Pac-12 slate did not start the way the UCLA Bruins were hoping as they fell at home to the Oregon State Beavers, 27-20, on Saturday at the Rose Bowl.
UCLA just did not seem to have it from start to finish in this one and could not put anything together against the stingy Oregon State defense.
The Bruins fall to 3-1 on the season and 0-1 in conference play.
Here are 10 things we learned about the Bruins in the 27-20 loss.
Brett Hundley Is the Real Deal
Even though UCLA fell short, quarterback Brett Hundley looked relatively sharp once again.
The freshman completed 27 of 42 passes for 372 yards and a touchdown. Hundley also once again showed what he can do with his feet as he carried the ball 10 times for 32 yards and another score.
He single-handedly kept a few plays alive all by himself and did not turn the ball over.
Hundley has all the makings of being one of the best quarterbacks in the Pac-12 in the years to come.
Johnathan Franklin Is Not a Heisman Contender
Three games into the season there were murmurs that senior running back Johnathan Franklin was turning into a Heisman contender, and rightfully so as he led the nation in rushing yards.
After the loss to Oregon State, that is likely no longer the case.
Franklin was held in check throughout the game, and that was the difference. He only rushed for 45 yards on 12 carries and could never get anything going.
The Secondary Is a Major Weakness
It did not take long for Oregon State to show off their passing attack, and quarterback Sean Mannion threw for nearly 300 yards in the first half.
He only finished the game with 379 yards on 24-of-35, but most of that was because the Beavers were running the ball more in the second half.
UCLA did force two turnovers in the second half, but they have a lot of questions, not only in coverage, but also tackling when it comes to the secondary.
Shaquelle Evans Could Be Phenomenal
This was certainly a coming-out party for wide receiver Shaquelle Evans as he caught six passes for 148 yards, including a 65-yard touchdown toward the end of the first half.
Evans only had 309 yards last season and did not play the year before, so this was clearly the best game he has had in his UCLA career.
If he can step up and continue to develop, he will be a huge weapon down the stretch for head coach Jim Mora Jr.
Ka'imi Fairbairn Will Be Just Fine
Freshman kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn did not have a perfect day. He missed a field goal in the second half that could have tightened the game up and given UCLA a chance to win at the end.
He came back and knocked down a 36-yard field goal at the end of the game to give the Bruins one last shot.
Fairbairn has been up and down all season, but kicking, particularly for a freshman, is not an easy thing to do.
He showed just how good he can be and will be an asset for the Bruins by the end of the season.
The Offense Is Not as Good as Originally Expected
For a team that was second in the country on offense at 622 yards a game coming in, don't expect numbers like that now that Pac-12 play has started.
The Bruins were held to 444 yards, and a lot of those were late in the game.
What seemed like an offense that would be at the top of the Pac-12 may actually finish near the middle of the pack after watching them play Oregon State.
Third Down Is a Huge Problem
Third down was absolutely awful for UCLA, and that was one of the main differences in the outcome of the game.
The Bruins were 2-of-15 on third down. Part of that could be due to the fact that UCLA struggled to run the ball.
They consistently found themselves in 3rd-and-long situations and that is never easy, particularly against a defense as talented as Oregon State.
Running the Football Is Most Important to UCLA's Success
In their first three games, UCLA was successful because they were able to run the football. Today was a completely different story.
The Bruins were held to 72 yards rushing as a team on 28 carries.
That is a stark contrast to what they did in their previous three games where they scored at least 36 points in each contest.
UCLA Is Not Ready to Contend for the Pac-12 Title
After jumping into the rankings and cracking the Top 20 this week, UCLA proved they are not ready to battle with the big boys of the Pac-12.
They might have had some aspirations of shocking the conference and contending for a crown, but they are still a few years away.
One thing is for certain: Jim Mora Jr. can coach, and he has enough talent to win more conference games than they lose in 2012.
Upsets Can Happen
The Bruins were an eight-point favorite coming into this one, and needless to say, this was an upset according to most.
That should come as a lesson to the Bruins, as they prepare for a road game against a Colorado team that will be looking to do the same thing Oregon State did.
This is clearly a lesson for the Bruins, and they will be well aware of what can happen when they do not come to play every snap.
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