UCLA Welcomes Back the Running Game

Justin YettContributor IISeptember 20, 2009

KNOXVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 12: Jonathan Franklin #23 of the UCLA Bruins is knocked out of bounds by Janzen Jackson #15 and Dennis Rogan #41 of the Tennessee Volunteers on September 12, 2009 at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tennessee. UCLA beat Tennessee 19-15. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)

UCLA welcomed a part of their game they haven't had for a while in Saturday's match-up against the Wildcats of Kansas State.

For the first time since Chris Markey in the 2007 Las Vegas Bowl, UCLA had a running back eclipse the 100 yard mark for a game.

Jonathan Franklin, a redshirt freshman, has started all three games for the Bruins this year, but this was definitely his breakout game.

Franklin rushed for 119 yards on 23 carries, and had a few long runs last night. This is a 180 degree turn around from last years rushing game who only averaged around two to three yards per carry.

Franklin spent all last year on the scout team, and was named Offensive Scout Team player of the year. That experience has proved most valuable, as he is proving to be a solid running back for the Bruins this year.

A large part of the running game is the revamped offensive line for the Bruins this year. After playing countless combinations last year, they seem to have a good fit this year. Anchoring the left side is true freshman Xavier Su'a-Filo, who UCLA thinks can turn into something special.

They have played the same line for three games now, and already are blocking better than they did last year.

The 2009 Bruins look a lot more energized this year, and I would expect a big year from this offensive line as they continue to grow together as a unit. 

All I can say is, Welcome back UCLA's rushing attack.