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Josh Rosen

UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen

Record: 8-4 (5-4 Pac-12)

Notable wins: BYU (24-23), Arizona (56-30), Utah (17-9)

Notable losses: Stanford (56-35), USC (40-21)

Coach: Jim Mora Jr.

Total offense: 472.6 yards per game (24th nationally)

Total defense: 393.5 yards per game (62nd nationally)

Common threads

COMMON FOE: Nebraska and UCLA each played BYU this season. The Huskers ... well, you know what happened in the season opener. Two weeks later, UCLA rallied late for a 24-23 win at the Rose Bowl.

LAST MEETING: UCLA used a second-half surge to beat Nebraska 41-21 in 2013 at Memorial Stadium.

Bruin basics

ROSEN: True freshman quarterback Josh Rosen has lived up to the recruiting hype, throwing for 3,350 yards and 20 touchdowns this season. Having Jordan Payton helps. The wideout has caught 75 passes for 1,068 yards, and four other Bruins have at least 24 receptions. Rosen had a stretch of 246 pass attempts without an interception late in the year.

PROTECTING ROSEN: The Bruin offensive line has done a better job protecting its quarterback. Last year, UCLA allowed 3.1 sacks per game, which ranked 112th nationally. The Bruins are giving up just 1.1 per game this season.

BATTERED DEFENSE: UCLA started the season 4-0 and was ranked in the top 10 before going 4-4 down the stretch. Injuries have riddled the defense. Defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes and cornerback Fabian Moreau suffered early season-ending injuries. And star linebacker Myles Jack is out because of torn meniscus he suffered early in the season. All three were considered all-conference-type players.

RUN DEFENSE WOES: Because of those injuries, some Pac-12 schools have had field days against the Bruins. Four Pac-12 teams rushed for 200 yards or more against UCLA, and Utah had 197. However, UCLA ranks first in the Pac-12 in passing defense and has picked off 12 passes.

 

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