Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
UCLA QB Brett Hundley.
Contain QB Taylor Martinez
It's imperative that the Bruins keep containment out on the edge. Martinez will look to exploit the defense with his legs at any opportunity. Having the ability to keep gap integrity up front will be UCLA's biggest test in this contest.
In last year's game, Martinez ran for 112 yards—92 of which came on one carry. Martinez will undoubtedly get yards on the ground. UCLA cannot completely compensate for his ability to improvise when the play breaks down.
However, the Bruins can hope to minimize the chance for a big play.
Win the special teams battle
Against a ranked opponent on the road in a hostile environment, any sort of mistake is often magnified. All three phases of the game have to be played at a satisfactory level in order to snag a victory away from home.
UCLA's special teams unit is somewhat of an unknown at this point.
Sophomore kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn had a rocky season as a true freshman last year. Fairbairn went 16-22 last year. In the opener against Rice in 2012, he had three extra points blocked. Against Nebraska, he missed two of his four field-goal attempts.
This season, he has missed one of his two field-goal attempts. UCLA's starting punter is true freshman Sean Covington. Covington did not register a punt in the opener due to the Bruins' offensive prowess.
Any game can be decided on special teams. For UCLA's young unit, Mora will hope that there won't be any errors.
Keep emotions in check
No one truly knows how UCLA will perform on Saturday. The team is reeling from the death of teammate Nick Pasquale.
In a sense, the Bruins could use Pasquale's death as a galvanizing force. The team could go out and dedicate the game—and season—to the fallen teammate. The team could also just not perform well due to the circumstance.
The atmosphere in the stadium will be raucous and chaotic. With a young roster, UCLA has to avoid becoming overwhelmed by the moment. It'll be easier said than done, but the grieving process could be helped by simply getting out on the football field and competing.