Aug. 30, 2010
Hello Bruins and welcome to the '82 Review' post-camp edition.
It has been a long three weeks leading up to this point and we are now less than a week away from opening kickoff in Manhattan, Kansas. The past few weeks of fall camp have been a grind, however, through all of the hard work, heat and double days, we, the 2010 UCLA Bruins, are prepared to begin our journey to what has the makings of a successful season.
This year's fall camp was by far the most intense fall camp I have been part of since arriving at UCLA. The battle for starting spots and the need for improvement on both offense and defense led to great competition at nearly every spot on the field.
This was also the first time we were able to see how the new freshmen would look at the next level. We had a few freshmen who stepped up and consistently made plays throughout camp. Dietrich Riley, freshman safety, made a couple of big interceptions along with a few big hits on our running backs during our scrimmages. Malcolm Jones, freshman running back, had the run of the camp during one of our early scrimmages where he stiff-armed two `backers and shook a few dbs for a 30-yard gain. Anthony Barr, freshman F-back, showed day in and day out that he is ready to compete on Saturdays. Whether it was making spectacular catches or cracking defensive ends on blocks, A-Barr showed he is capable of doing it all.
While some of the young guys have done a great job of making early impacts, we have also had a few of the older guys step up and make plays. The injury bug hit us during fall camp, causing a couple of great starters to go down. On defense, with the loss of Datone Jones, Nate Chandler moved to defensive end. Nate had a great camp and is looking to make big plays on Saturdays for us.
Offensively we lost center Kai Maiava but senior Darius Savage has stepped up and done a great job for us at guard with Ryan Taylor shifting to center. Both Richard Brehaut and incoming JC transfer Darius Bell have made some big plays at quarterback. Darius showed his ability to make plays with his feet and his arm. Brehaut made tremendous progress this camp, maturing a lot in the mental aspect of the game and displayed the confidence it takes to lead the offense as a quaterback.
I also have to shout out the Dog Pound (wide receivers). This camp was full of big plays from the group - Ricky Marvray and Josh Smith both showed they are ready to make an impact for the team this year. Nelson Rosario made his routine spectacular catches throughout camp and Randall Carroll showed he is a year older and a year wiser and ready to make big plays for us this season.
I am especially excited for our first game against Kansas State because it is a mini homecoming for me. Having lived in Kansas for a year, I have plenty of friends making the trip down to Manhattan for the game. Having grown up surrounded by Big 12 football, I understand the importance football holds to Kansas State fans. Coach Snyder will have the team well coached and prepared for the game. After last season's defeat, we know the Wildcats will be excited for another opportunity to play us. You can't beat a game on ABC and I am excited to hear all the Bruin faithful cheer for us in Manhattan.
I will be checking in again next week.