|Bruins, Olson off to impressive start|
|Written by Admin|
|Monday, 03 September 2007 15:32|
LOS ANGELES (AP) -UCLA coach Karl Dorrell reviewed the tape and gave the Bruins a thumbs up.|
``There are still some things we can improve in all three areas, but I was really impressed after watching the tape and seeing how far our team has come and how we can correct some things and be even better,'' he said Monday.
The Bruins opened the season with a 45-17 victory at Stanford over the weekend.
``We had a solid performance. It was a good road win, a conference game,'' Dorrell said.
Ben Olson threw for 286 yards and five touchdowns, Kahlil Bell ran for 195 yards and the Bruins rolled up 338 yards on the ground against the outmanned Cardinal.
``Offensively, it was a solid start,'' Dorrell said. ``We didn't have rhythm early in the game, but really started to gain momentum toward the end of the second quarter and had a very good third and fourth quarter.
``We had a good running game, good passing game, made some big plays - all the things that we were preaching for ourselves to be that type of offense - and we showed a little bit about what our potential is on that side of the ball.''
Although he went 16-of-29 with no interceptions, Olson said he was far from perfect.
``I realize I could have played a lot better and done more,'' he said. ``There were some little dunk passes I should have completed that I didn't that really frustrated me. I'm going to work on that this week.''
Olson, a redshirt junior who started the first five games last season before being sidelined by a knee injury, liked new offensive coordinator Jay Norvell's play-calling against Stanford.
``It was fun for us to get out there and kind of open things up, to run a few little trick plays here or there,'' he said.
Dorrell wasn't surprised by Olson's performance.
``It was what we expected. We felt he was going to have a good game,'' the coach said. ``He had a really good camp and got better and better throughout camp. We felt he was confident, he was poised, and he felt comfortable playing.
``When you see that as a coach, you know he's bound to make some plays.''
Dorrell didn't find Bell's breakout game surprising, either.
``You just saw a lot of second and third effort, making what in some cases looked like a loss into a 15-yard gain,'' Dorrell said. ``Khalil's playing just how we expected him to play.
``He had an excellent spring, a very good fall camp. We knew we had two players that could help us in our run game.''
Bell and Chris Markey, who led the team in both rushing and receiving last year, will continue to share tailback duties, Dorrell said.
While the Bruins' opening victory came against long-suffering Stanford, which won just one game last season, they face a far stiffer test this weekend when they play their home opener against Brigham Young.
The Cougars beat Arizona 20-7 on Saturday and have won 11 games in a row dating to last Sept. 23. That stretch includes a 38-8 thumping of Oregon in the Las Vegas Bowl to close out last season.
``This is a week to get better, with a very good BYU team coming in here,'' Dorrell said. ``They've had a lot of success against the Pac-10 of late. The last two games they've played, they beat two Pac-10 teams, one in a bowl game, and this game that they played last week.
``They're pretty confident coming into the Rose Bowl, so we've got to get better.''
Olson has a tie to the Cougars. When he came out of high school in Thousand Oaks in 2002, he signed with BYU and redshirted there that fall. Then he went on a two-year church mission and transferred to UCLA when he returned.
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