For the first 10 minutes of the game, it was hard to distinguish between the top-10 team and the winless squad off to its worst start in more than 40 years.
Then, the rout began.
Following a punt and an interception in its first two drives, No. 10 Washington (4-1, 2-0 Pac-12) scored on four straight possessions to take a 24-7 lead into halftime versus UCLA (0-4, 0-1).
The Huskies methodically beat down the Bruins’ defense, converting nine of 13 third and fourth downs and running 49 plays compared to only 25 for UCLA.
That culminated in a 335-198 total yards advantage and almost 15 more minutes of possession for Washington in the first half.
And even though UCLA was able to hold the visitors off the scoreboard to start the game, that didn’t last long.
Two plays after redshirt senior safety Adarius Pickett intercepted an overthrown pass, UCLA handed the ball right back. Freshman quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s pass attempt was deflected in the middle of the field and Washington safety Taylor Rapp dove and caught the ball right before it hit the ground
Husky quarterback Jake Browning then completed a brisk five-play drive with a fade to receiver Aaron Fuller for a 25-yard touchdown.
Browning finished the first half 11-of-17 for 202 yards and one touchdown, but he also picked up four first downs and a touchdown by running. Washington running back Myles Gaskin led his team with 73 rushing yards on 17 carries.
Junior kicker JJ Molson missed a 47-yard field goal – his first miss this season – which snapped a nine-consecutive-made field goal streak dating back to last year.
Redshirt junior running back Joshua Kelley continued his hot streak with 71 yards on seven carries. He broke through the line of scrimmage for an 18-yard gain on UCLA’s first play, and he later added a 39-yard romp and a 22-yard catch-and-run.
Thompson-Robinson was a maestro on the drive following the Huskies’ field goal. He completed all five of his passes for 71 yards, finishing with a nine-yard touchdown strike to junior receiver Theo Howard.
The true freshman quarterback finished the half 11-of-17 for 125 yards, a touchdown and an interception.