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UCLA football: Offense again labors in scrimmage

August 28, 2009 |  3:52 pm
Another scrimmage.

Another day of struggles for UCLA’s first-team offense.

There were improvements. “We scored a touchdown, that’s an improvement,” offensive coordinator Norm Chow said.

But there were enough problems to prompt Coach Rick Neuheisel to say, “I think guys realize we are not game-ready yet. I think that’s a call to arms over the weekend while they get a little rest.”

The first-team offense did move the ball some, though it played only against the second-team defense. But the red flags -- or yellow ones -- were apparent.

The offense was slow to get on the field for the first play. “It probably would have been a delay of game penalty,” Chow said. The team went up to the line and immediately jumped offsides.

So without running a play, the offense was 10 yards in the hole.

“We started slow as an offense,” Neuheisel said. “We have to learn that you don’t get the feel-out process in games. That’s too important a portion of the game. They have to get their motor running and be ready to go on first down.”

The first-team offense had a respectable 45 yards rushing in 11 carries. Most of that was handled by tailback Johnathan Franklin, who had 34 yards in four carries.

Quarterback Kevin Prince had a wobbly day. He did complete nine of 13 passes for 73 yards. He also had a screen pass intercepted.

“I thought he was better [than in last week’s scrimmage], but there were still a couple balls he should have let go,” Neuheisel said. “But I thought he managed the game well.”

Prince did direct a 50-yard scoring drive, completing three of three passes for 48 yards.  Milton Knox scored on a two-yard run.

Other practice notes:

--Kicker Kai Forbath, who had been out the last week because of a sore right leg, kicked field goals of 25 and 47 yards.

--Receiver Morrell Presley, playing on the second team, had a 15-yard touchdown reception and also had a 21-yard reception that set up Knox’s touchdown run.

--Wide receiver Gavin Ketchum is out because of a pulled right hamstring and is doubtful for the Sept. 5 opener against San Diego State.

--Chris Foster

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