Advertisement

 LOS ANGELES (AP) -While Rick Neuheisel insisted there are no ``moral victories'' for the UCLA football team, he still gave the Bruins good grades for effort and improvement.
UCLA played Fresno State on even terms before losing 36-31 on Saturday.
``We certainly have things to improve on, but we're eager to do just that, improve,'' Neuheisel said Monday. ``The effort was such that it could have easily been a victory.
``We're not into moral victories at UCLA, I don't mean to intimate that. But I do see us going in the right direction.''
Tailback Kahlil Bell, who returned to the lineup against Fresno State after missing two games with a sprained ankle, agreed.
``The goal is to win and we didn't, but we did a lot of good things,'' said Bell, who carried 20 times for 73 yards and scored on runs of 1 and 7 yards against the Bulldogs. ``We put 31 points up on the board, finally had some touchdown drives, something we hadn't done in the previous weeks.
bing.''
The Bruins, off to a 1-3 start that includes an 0-1 Pac-10 mark in their first year under Neuheisel, host another struggling conference foe, Washington State (1-4, 0-2) on Saturday night at the Rose Bowl.
Neuheisel, asked what he found most encouraging about UCLA's latest performance, quickly replied, ``Our running game was much better.''
The Bruins, who gained a not-so-grand total of 156 yards on the ground in their first three games, netted 234 against Fresno State.
``Kahlil being back in the game helps us, not only from a talent standpoint, but certainly with the attitude that he brings with him,'' the coach said. ``Kahlil is kind of like that guy in the Monty Python movies who gets his arm cut off and says, `flesh wound.'''
Freshman Derrick Coleman rushed for 86 yards on 10 carries against the Bulldogs, but lost a critical fumble late in the game.
One area in need of improvement, Neuheisel said, is third-down efficiency on both sides of the ball.
UCLA's offense went 2-for-9 on third down against Fresno State, which was 6-of-14 against the Bruins' defense.
``We play a lot of great snaps on defense,'' Neuheisel said. ``We've got to play better on third down. We have three to four big plays a game that are killing us.
``Usually, as is always the case, it's one guy getting out of position and all of a sudden, there's a huge play.''
mes at UCLA were a roller-coaster ride that now seems to be leveling out a bit. The Bruins upset Tennessee in the opener, then were humbled in a 59-0 setback to BYU that was the school's worst defeat in 79 years. That was followed by a lackluster performance in a 31-10 loss to Arizona.
``Now we just need to kind of punch the door down and find ways to win,'' he said.
Bell believes that's coming.
``We're missing a lot of guys right now, but we're coming back from injury and we're getting better and we're going to get this rolling,'' the senior tailback said. ``We're going to get this thing turned around.''

Recent NCAAF Discussions

Advertisement
Advertisement

NCAAF Headlines

More inNCAAF News  

NCAAF Top Stories

Thumbnail Utah Season Win Total Prediction After winning 10 games a year ago will the Utah Utes suffer a setback after going through a transition offensively?
Thumbnail Texas A&M Season Win Total Prediction As recently as a couple of years ago, Texas A&M fans would’ve laughed at the notion of a make-or-break season for Kevin Sumlin. Three straight disappointments,...
Thumbnail Washington Win Total Prediction After losing six times in each of Chris Petersen's first two seasons, are the Washington Huskies a good bet to win more than 9 games in 2016?
Thumbnail Mississippi State Season Win Total Prediction When a player like Dak Prescott comes along, college football devotees simply have to lap up every breathtaking snap. The Mississippi State faithful...
Thumbnail Arkansas Season Win Total Prediction Few teams in college football ended the 2015 season with more momentum than the Arkansas Razorbacks. Now that the word is out, though,...
More inNCAAF Articles  

NCAAF Team Pages

Advertisement