UCLA will Battle Baylor in Holiday Bowl
By Steve Finley Sentinel Contributing Sports Writer
Published December 19, 2012

UCLA is going to need big games out of Shaquille Evans (Inglewood High School) and Johnathan Franklin (Dorsey High School) to defeat Baylor.  Evans (1) is the team’s leading receiver, and Franklin (23) is the team’s leading rusher.  Photo by Jason Lewis

The 9-4 UCLA Bruins will face the 7-6 Baylor Bears in the Holiday Bowl on December 27 in San Diego.  Kickoff at Qualcomm Stadium is set for 6:45 p.m. and the game will be shown on ESPN. 

No. 17 UCLA is coming off a 27-24 heart breaking loss to Stanford in the Pac-12 Conference Championship.  They out played Stanford for three quarters but missed a game tying field goal as time ran out.

Now the Bruins will have to get ready for the number one offense in the nation.  On the flip side Baylor has one of the worst defenses in the country. 

If UCLA beats Baylor it will be the first time since 2005 the Bruins will have a 10 win season and it will mark the first time since 2009 that the Bruins have appeared in a major bowl game.  To beat the Bears the Bruins will need to play more consistent defense, especially in the secondary.  The Bruins front seven can match up with any team in the nation but their cornerbacks and safeties will need to step up and make plays.  If they don’t stop the pass UCLA will be in for a long night in San Diego.

On offense quarterback Brett Hundley and running back Johnathan Franklin (Dorsey High School) will need to come through one more time in 2012.  Both players have had great seasons and have provided leadership on and off the field. “We have to stay consistent as a team,” said Hundley after their first loss to Stanford.


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