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Bruins Prepare For Cal
Courtesy: UCLA Athletics  
Release:  10/14/2002

Oct. 14, 2002

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  • Weekly Press Conference Audio (10/14)

    GAME # 7 - UCLA, 4-2 overall and 1-1 in Pac-10 play, travels to Berkeley to face the California Golden Bears (4-3, 1- 2) this Saturday afternoon, Oct. 19. Kickoff is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. PST.

    The game will be televised live on a national basis by Turner Sports on Superstation TBS. Ron Thulin and Charles Davis will call the action with Craig Sager on the sidelines. Fox Sports Radio AM 1150 and the Bruin Radio Network broadcasts all games. Chris Roberts and Matt Stevens will call the action in the booth with Wayne Cook substituting for John Ireland on the sidelines.

    LAST WEEK - UCLA took an early lead, trailed by three points at halftime, rallied to take a six-point lead in the third quarter but could not score in the final quarter of a 31-30 loss to No. 7 Oregon at the Rose Bowl.

    After the Bruin defense held the Ducks to begin the game, UCLA scored on its first offensive play when Tab Perry got behind the defense and Cory Paus found him for a 55-yard touchdown. With 51 seconds remaining in the first quarter, UCLA snapped a 7-7 tie with a trick play. Wide receiver Jon Dubravac lined up in the backfield, took a direct snap and launched a 53-yard strike to Craig Bragg for a 14-7 lead.

    With Oregon leading 21-14 in the second quarter, Paus found Bragg alone up the right sideline and he raced the rest of the way for a 71-yard touchdown, UCLA's longest pass play since the 2000 USC game. However, Oregon finished the half with a 59-yard field goal, the longest ever by a Bruin opponent and tied for the longest in Pac-10 history in a league game, for a 24-21 lead.

    UCLA tied the game early in the third quarter on Chris Griffith's 37-yard field goal. The Bruins moved ahead with 7:28 left in the quarter when, on third down, Bragg made a one-hand catch on an inside screen and raced up the middle for a 46-yard touchdown. However, Griffith's PAT was blocked, a play that would prove costly.

    Oregon faced a third down on the final play of the third quarter, but the incomplete pass was ruled no play because the clock expired before the snap. On the first play of the fourth quarter, quarterback Jason Fife found Keenan Howry be-hind the Bruin defense and Howry raced 74 yards for the seventh touchdown of the day measuring at least 45 yards.

    Jared Siegel's PAT gave the Ducks a 31-30 lead.

    The Bruins had the ball twice in the fourth quarter but could not score on either possession. On the first, they drove from their own 31-yard line to the Oregon 27 but had to punt from the 35-yard line after two plays gained zero yards and an intentional grounding penalty. On the second, UCLA drove from its own 20-yard line to the Oregon 25-yard line with just under three minutes remaining. Two running plays lost four yards and an incomplete pass left UCLA on the Duck 29-yard line with fourth and 14. Chris Griffith's 46- yard field goal attempt was wide left and the Ducks took over with 1:54 and ran out the clock for the win.

    Offensively, UCLA accounted for 477 yards, averaging 7.1 yards per play. Paus completed 17 of 31 passes for 316 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions. His touchdown passes measured 55, 71 and 46 yards as he went over 300 yards for the second straight game.

    Bragg had one of the best days in school history for a receiver with nine receptions for 230 yards and three scores. His 230 yards rank No. 2 in school history behind J.J. Stokes' 263 versus USC in 1992, his nine receptions tie for eighth on that list and his three touchdown receptions were the most by a Bruin since Stokes caught four against Washing-ton in 1993.

    Tab Perry tied his career high with seven receptions and for the second straight week, broke 100 yards receiving (126). He scored a 55-yard touchdown on UCLA's first play. Tailback Tyler Ebell, making his first career start, rushed for 119 yards on 26 carries.

    Defensively, UCLA held Oregon to three touchdowns (the fourth was on a punt return) and 383 yards, including just seven points, 163 yards and four first downs in the second half. Marcus Reese led the Bruins, who recorded four sacks, with nine tackles, including one sack and a second for loss. Jibril Raymo, starting at free safety for injured Ben Emanuel, made eight stops while Brandon Chillar added six tackles and Jarrad Page and Spencer Havner had five each. Reese, Ryan Boschetti, C.J. Niusulu and Dave Ball recorded the four sacks.

    SERIES NOTES - UCLA leads the series with California, which dates back to 1933, by a count of 46-25-1. The Bru-ins won last year's meeting, 56-17, in the Rose Bowl. Cory Paus threw for three touchdown passes (13-16 for 273 yards) and DeShaun Foster accounted for 178 all-purpose yards and three scores in the win by then No. 4-ranked UCLA. Paus completed 11 straight passes from late in the first quarter through the middle of the third quarter. His efficiency rating for the game of 286.45 was the second-highest single-game rating in Division IA last year.

    California won the last meeting between the two teams in Berkeley, 46-38, in three overtimes, the longest game in UCLA history. Paus threw for four touchdowns (309 yards) in that contest as UCLA rallied for two fourth-quarter touchdowns to send the game into overtime. UCLA played without an injured DeShaun Foster and managed only 45 net rushing yards. Freddie Mitchell led UCLA with 167 receiving yards in the game, the seventh-highest total in school history at the time.

    Bob Toledo is 4-2 versus California as the Bruin head coach. California is averaging 378.6 yards -- 265.0 passing and 113.6 rushing -- and 38.7 points (12th in NCAA) on offense while allowing 412.0 yards -- 135.9 rushing and 276.1 in the air -- and 26.4 points on defense. The Golden Bears rank fifth nationally in turnover margin (+1.86).

    Individually, Joe Igber ranks fourth in the Pac-10 in rushing (83.1 yards). Kyle Boller has completed 131 of 229 passes for 1,699 yards (242.7 average), a Pac-10 best 18 touch-downs and just five interceptions. LaShaun Ward averages 122.9 all-purpose yards as a receiver and kickoff returner (first in the Pac-10 and 16th in NCAA with his 26.5 aver-age) and place kicker Mark Jensen is second in the Pac-10 in scoring (9.3 points) and third in field goals (11 of 14).

    BRUIN HEAD COACH BOB TOLEDO - The Bruin head coach owns a record of 46-29 (29-21 in Pac-10 play) and a winning percentage of .613 during his six-plus years on the job. The 20-game winning streak in 1997-98 was the longest in school history, twice as long as the previous streak (10, set in 1946 and tied in 1954-55). His teams have won two Pac-10 titles (1997, 1998) and have qualified to play in a bowl game in four of the past five seasons.

    Toledo is only the second coach in school history to win 10 regular-season games (Bert LaBrucherie in 1946) and only the second coach in school history to win 10 total games in back-to-back seasons (Terry Donahue in 1987-88).

    Toledo's 46 wins put him in fourth place on UCLA's career victory list. Under Toledo, UCLA is 36-9 when it scores at least 30 points and 18-1 when it scores at least 40. UCLA is 31-6 when leading at the half and has won 11 times (11- 22) after trailing at the half and four (4-1)when tied at the half. The Bruins are 3-1 in overtime games. When ranked, the Bruins sport a 31-13 record under Toledo and are 15-5 when ranked in the Top 10.

    Under Toledo, UCLA is 16-13 versus ranked teams. It has won nine of the last 15 and is 15-8 in the last 23 games versus Top 25 teams.

    DID YOU KNOW? - This season, UCLA is 3-0 when its opponent scores first and 1-2 when it draws first blood. In 2001, the Bruins were 3-1 when they scored first and 4-3 when the opponent scored first.

    In 2002, UCLA is 3-0 on the road and 1-2 at home. Ten of UCLA's touchdowns have measured at least 30 yards -- nine on offense plus a 33-yard interception return. The offensive scores have covered 71, 64, 55, 53, 46, 41, 37 and 33 in the air and 49 yards on the ground.

    In six games, UCLA's offense has produced 19 scrimmage plays of at least 30 yards -- 13 passes and six runs. The Bruins had five plays of 30+ yards at Oregon State, four each versus Oregon and Oklahoma State and three at San Diego State The longest run is 73 yards by Tyler Ebell at Oregon State and the longest pass is 71 yards from Cory Paus to Craig Bragg for a touchdown against Oregon. All four touchdowns against the Ducks measured at least 46 yards (71, 55, 53 and 46 yards).

    In the same span, the Bruin offense has produced 33 scrimmage plays of at least 20 yards, including 10 versus Okla-homa State and Oregon State and six versus Oregon.

    Against Oregon, UCLA started a secondary consisting of a true senior four-year starter (Ricky Manning, Jr.), a true sophomore second-year starter who switched positions after the third game (Matt Ware), a true freshman making his third start (Jarrad Page) and a true sophomore making his first career start after playing less than 40 defensive snaps this year (Jibril Raymo).

    In the Oregon State game, Tab Perry (145) and Mike Seidman (138) became the first Bruin 100-yard pass receiving duo since Freddie Mitchell (125) and Brian Poli Dixon (107) versus Arizona State (9/30/00). Against Oregon, Craig Bragg (230) and Tab Perry (126) had more than 100 re-ceiving yards, giving UCLA back-to-back games with a pair of 100-yard receivers for the first time since the final two games of the 1998 season (Miami and Wisconsin).

    The Bruins have rushed for an average of 5.38 yards per carry in the fourth quarter this season (79 carries for 425 yards). Craig Bragg's 71-yard touchdown reception from Cory Paus was UCLA's longest pass play since the 2000 USC game, when Paus and Freddie Mitchell connected for 74 yards. During Bob Toledo six-plus seasons as head coach, UCLA is 29-7 when it wins the turnover battle, 8-18 when it loses the turnover battle and 9-4 when the turnovers are even. Tyler Ebell's 53-yard punt return against San Diego State was UCLA's longest since the 1998 season, when Ryan Roques returned one 77 yards for a touchdown at Washington. UCLA has scored three touchdowns on blocked punts in the last two years and Jibril Raymo has scored two of them. Marcus Reese blocked both last year and Matt Clark did the honors against San Diego State.

    Against San Diego State (43) and Oregon State (43), UCLA scored 40 or more points in back-to-back games for the first time since 1998, when it scored at least 40 points in each of the first five games.

    UCLA has fumbled the ball 11 times this year and has lost two, just one on offense. Five are on offense (one lost), three are on kickoff returns, two are on interceptions (one lost) and one is on a punt return.

    UCLA has won 15 of its last 23 games versus ranked opponents dating back to a 1997 win at #11 Texas and has posted a 23-7 record in regular-season games played in the Rose Bowl since that win over the Longhorns.

    UCLA has won 10 of its last 11 non-conference regular-season games dating back to 1999 (following a loss at Ohio State, the Bruins have defeated Fresno State in 1999, Ala-bama, Fresno State and Michigan in 2000, Alabama, Kan-sas and Ohio State in 2001 and Colorado State, Oklahoma State and San Diego State in 2002).

    True sophomore Jibril Raymo (FS), junior college transfer Ryan Boschetti (DT), redshirt freshman Tyler Ebell (TB) and true freshman Marcedes Lewis (TE) each made their first career starts against Oregon. In six games this season, 12 Bruins have made their first starts - Paul Mociler, OG; Keith Carter, TE; Marcus Reese, LB; Spencer Havener, LB; Jarrad Page, DB; Jon Dubravac, WR; Mike McCloskey, C; Ed Blanton, OT; Tyler Ebell, TB; Jibril Raymo, FS; Ryan Boschetti, DT; Marcedes Lewis, TE. In addition, junior Asi Faoa made his first start at defensive end (he had one previous start at LB in 1999 vs. Boise State) and true fresh-man defensive tackle C.J. Niusulu made his debut versus the Ducks.

    Sixteen Bruins made their varsity debut versus Colorado State, including eight true freshmen J.D. Groves, Marcedes Lewis, Justin London, Glenn Ohaeri, Drew Olson, Jarrad Page, Junior Taylor, Wesley Walker; six redshirt freshmen Tyler Ebell, Jason Harrison, Spencer Havner, Wendell Mathis, Mike McCloskey and James Jessen; and two juniors Ryan Boschetti and David Tautofi.

    Numerous players made their debuts at San Diego State. Redshirt freshman Ed Blaton started at right tackle for injured Mike Saffer in his first career game. Tight end Keith Carter, linebacker Matt Chastain, quarterback John Sciarra, offensive guard Robert Cleary, wide receiver Jacques Lazarus, wide receiver Brett Mitchell, offensive tackle Matt Mosebar, offensive guard Jason Nitz, wide receiver Josh Roenicke all saw the first action of their careers.

    True freshman strong safety Jarrad Page made the first start of his career vs. San Diego State, as did Blanton. Tight end/ H back Keith Carter made his first career start at Oregon State. Redshirt freshman running back Tyler Ebell, sophomore free safety Jibril Raymo, true freshman tight end Marcedes Lewis and junior transfer defensive lineman Ryan Boschetti each made their first career starts against Oregon.


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