UCLA Football Team Took A Step Back In 2015
December 31, 2015
By Myke Williams
The 2015 season was supposed to be the year UCLA stepped up to the head of the class. After their 37-29 loss to Nebraska in the Foster Farms Bowl last Saturday in Santa Clara the 8-5 Bruins are stuck in the middle of the line.
Losing to a good Nebraska team is not the problem. That loss just exposed their lack of depth on defense. After a series of injuries on defense to key players at the beginning of the season the Bruins were beaten in five of their last nine games. In their last two losses the Bruins gave up a combined 77 points, 40 to USC and 37 to Nebraska.
Coming into the 2015 season UCLA's biggest question mark was at the quarterback position. Could they find someone to replace one of the best quarterbacks in UCLA history in Bret Hundley. That was the biggest question mark facing the Bruins this year.
Well, not only did they find a replacement; they found one of the best quarterbacks in the nation in freshman Josh Rosen.
From the moment Rosen stepped onto the Rose Bowl turf against Virginia on September 5 his pin point passes reminded Bruin fans of Troy Aikman. Rosen ended the season with 3,740 yards passing with 23 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. As long as Rosen stays in Westwood the Bruins will have a good offense.
Once again it's the defense that needs to be upgraded. The defensive line needs to get bigger and stronger. The linebackers need to be bigger and faster and the defensive back field needs to be more physical. The Bruins need game breakers on their return teams and they need to find a solid replacement for kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn.
If they can fill those holes the 2016 season will be better than this year.