Sunday, February 23

News and notes

WHITE’S SEASON OVER: Junior running back
Manuel White is out for the season after fracturing his right
shoulder blade in the second quarter of UCLA’s 20-13 victory
over Arizona State on Saturday night. “What a loss. He means
so much to this team,” freshman running back Maurice Drew
said. “He’s our captain. That just means that me and
Tyler (Ebell) need to step up. And Akil (Harris) is coming back
into the rotation, too.” The 6-foot-3, 236-pound White was
the perfect complement to either the 5-foot-9 Ebell or the 5-foot-8
Drew. A bruising starting fullback, White was the Bruins’
best blocker in the backfield and their No. 1 option in short
yardage situations. “He is a great man and a great
player,” offensive lineman Eyoseph Efseaff said. “But
we have to move on. Maurice Drew had a phenomenal day, and Tyler
Ebell is always a threat.” In eight games this season, White
has 379 rushing yards and 101 receiving yards. He has three
touchdowns and is the team’s leading rusher.

BRAGG STEPS UP: When UCLA head coach Karl
Dorrell talked about opening up the offense last week, junior wide
receiver Craig Bragg knew that meant there would be more
opportunities to make an impact. Bragg set the tone early with a
52-yard reception on the Bruins’ first offensive play of the
game. “I was just trying to set the momentum for the
team,” Bragg said. “I got that opportunity on the first
play, and I made something happen.” Bragg finished with five
receptions for 118 yards and a touchdown. With 128 career
receptions, Bragg is now tied with Mike Sherrard in the UCLA record
books. Bragg now has 1,988 receiving yards ““ good enough for
ninth all-time.

SECONDARY EXCELS: UCLA had four sacks against
Arizona State, and a large part of that success was due to the play
of the Bruin cornerbacks. Senior Keith Short started in place of
the injured junior Matt Ware and played admirably. Arizona
State’s leading receiver, Derek Hagan, had just four catches
for 37 yards. “Short played solid,” UCLA defensive
coordinator Larry Kerr said. “It has been tough to lose key
players, but I’ve got to tip my hat to Short ““ I
can’t say enough about him. He is a great guy to
coach.” The pressure on the UCLA cornerbacks was eased
somewhat when Arizona State star quarterback Andrew Walter injured
his right ankle in the first half. That forced the Sun Devils to
play freshman Sam Keller, who had thrown just 12 passes in his
career. Keller threw for just 79 yards, as neither Short nor junior
Matt Clark gave up a big pass play. Their tight coverage left the
Arizona State quarterbacks with few options, which led to the
sacks. “The corners didn’t let the ball go over their
heads,” Kerr said. “We were very successful on

BROWN IMPRESSES: UCLA freshman Kevin Brown
started ahead of junior Paul Mociler at right guard after switching
to the other side of the ball this past week. Brown, who played on
both the offensive line and defensive line in high school, was
whistled for a false start on the Bruins’ first offensive
series, but performed well overall. “For his first time in a
college game at the offensive side of the ball he played OK,”
Dorrell said. “He’ll do better next time out, and you
know the first time won’t be perfect. He battled and did some
good things.” Brown said he felt comfortable playing on the
other side of the ball. “I got into it, and it was
great,” Brown said. “I felt good. It wasn’t
really tough to make the switch.”

INJURY REPORT: Senior defensive tackle Rodney
Leslie sprained his left ankle on Arizona State’s second
possession and is out indefinitely. Throughout practice last week,
Leslie was hampered by a bruised left collarbone but still started
Saturday. Ware did not play again due to a high ankle sprain and
was seen walking off the field after the game in street clothes and
a boot.

Compiled by Daniel Miller, Bruin Sports Senior

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