Just another embarrassing loss for UCLA
October 7, 2007
That qualifies as a horrible, indefensible, catastrophic loss.
For those of you who hadn’t been paying attention to college football this season, Notre Dame entered the game 0-5, and none of the games were even close.
Yet Notre Dame still managed to beat a team that was expected to do well this season and has talent. UCLA was ranked as high as #11 and returned 20 starters from a team that beat USC a year ago.
Some people will defend UCLA by saying that the Bruins lost because they had to use their third-string quarterback, MacLeod Bethel-Thompson, after starter Ben Olson got hurt early in the game.
But that’s not a good excuse. Bethel-Thompson passed the ball 28 times — about 20 times too many, considering that Notre Dame came into the game with the 107th best rushing defense in the country (out of 119 teams).
So even though Olson got injured and the inexperienced Bethel-Thompson threw four interceptions, I still blame coach Karl Dorrell for that disaster of an offense. A smart head coach would’ve realized that Notre Dame’s weakness on defense is the run, and to just keep running until you get stopped.
If you take away the quarterback runs (sacks), UCLA ran the ball 26 times for 111 yards — over four yards a carry, which is good. UCLA quarterbacks attempted 38 passes.
So let me get this straight — Notre Dame’s weakness on defense is stopping the run, so you pass 12 more times than you run — even though you have an inexperienced third-string quarterback. How does that make any sense? Thank you, Karl Dorrell.
To their credit, UCLA’s defense played great, holding Notre Dame to 140 total yards (UCLA got 277). But the offensive gameplan and execution was beyond horrible. The blame for that lies entirely with Dorrell. He’s the one who has an offensive background, he’s the one who recruited these players, he’s the one responsible for this team.
I know UCLA is 4-2, and to the uninformed fan, that looks good. But none of the wins are against good teams (and UCLA played horrible in all of them). Both of the losses were horrendous, embarrassing losses that made UCLA football a laughingstock. (Read my thoughts on the Utah debacle here).
If UCLA’s not the worst 4-2 team in the country, I don’t know who is. What’s scary is the tough games on the schedule are still remaining (Cal, Oregon, Arizona State, USC).
Notre Dame is now 1-5. While most of the country has been laughing at them for being a laughingstock, they will now laugh at UCLA for losing to Notre Dame.
If this post sounded incoherent, it’s because these embarrassing losses still hurt, even when you get used to them and expect them to happen.