College Football

more stats

(7) UCLA (0-0) at Virginia (0-0)



Saturday, August 30, 12 p.m. (ET)

The Sports Network

GAME NOTES: The much-anticipated 2014 season gets underway for the UCLA Bruins as Jim Mora's squad opens the season on the road against the Virginia Cavaliers.

The Bruins open the campaign ranked seventh in the nation after going 10-3 a year ago in Mora's second season at the helm. UCLA opened with five straight wins, but failed to remain in the conference hunt, dropping three Pac-12 tilts to nationally ranked foes in Stanford (24-10), Oregon (42-14) and Arizona State (38-33). Still, the Bruins closed the regular season with a big win over rival USC (35-14) and destroyed Virginia Tech in the Sun Bowl (42-12) to reach double-digit victories.

While UCLA's star is on the rise, Virginia's Mike London is sitting on one of the hottest seats in the country. The Cavaliers have failed to make significant progress under London, whose fourth year in Charlottesville, was his worst, with the team managing a mere 2-10 record. Those two wins came early on against BYU (19-16) and VMI (49-0), but the Cavs did not reach the win column again in 2013, closing the year with nine straight losses and a winless 0-8 ACC mark.

This marks the first-ever meeting between these two teams.

The UCLA offense comes down to one player, All-American candidate Brett Hundley. The junior signal caller has certainly caught the eye of the NFL with his unique skill set. He is coming off a 2013 in which he threw for 3,071 yards and 24 touchdowns. He also led the team in rushing with 748 yards and an additional 11 scores.

At receiver, Jordan Payton and Devin Fuller are reliable. Fuller had 471 yards and 4 scores on 43 catches last season, while Payton contributed 440 yards on 38 grabs.

Running back Jordon James (534 yards, 5 TDs) missed five games due to injury, but had a strong start, posting 100-yard games in the first three weeks. Paul Perkins (573 yards, 6 TDs) is another option and of course, the incredibly gifted Myles Jack (267 yards, 7 TDs) could get a smattering of carries, although he will be more important as a linebacker for the defense.

UCLA has a chance to dominate on both sides of the ball thanks to a slew of returning talent on defense.

The area of greatest strength is at linebacker, which is fitting considering new defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich coached that position the previous two seasons.

Jack is supremely gifted. He was stellar on defense before being asked to try his hand at running back. Despite playing on both sides, Jack still finished fifth on the team in tackles (75), including 7 for loss. He also showed his versatility by collecting a pair of interceptions and a team-high 11 pass breakups. Jack should be a serious Butkus Award candidate in 2014. Eric Kendricks (106 tackles, 2.0 sacks) led the team in stops and is a tackling machine. The duo makes for an easy transition from the loss of All- American Anthony Barr (10 sacks). Highly-touted freshman Zach Whitley makes the unit that much stronger.

The secondary is led by a trio of big-time playmakers in cornerback Ishmael Adams (61 tackles, 4 INTs) and safeties Anthony Jefferson (89 tackles, 2 INTs) and Randal Goforth (78 tackles, 3 INTs).

Despite the preseason hype, Mora wants to keep his team grounded and focused on the task at hand.

"Our success right now, in my opinion, is still very limited. We haven't won the Pac-12 Championship. We're 0-3 against Stanford," Mora said. "I don't want our players to feel like we're extra special and we've accomplished the goals we've set out to accomplish or that we're on the right track."

With seven starters returning on the offensive side of the football, improving on last year's numbers is likely for the Cavaliers. Virginia's top offensive weapon last year was tailback Kevin Parks, who rushed for 1,031 yards and 11 touchdowns. He returns after earning second-team All-ACC honors in 2013.

The quarterback position has some depth with junior David Watford (6-2, 205) and sophomore Greyson Lambert (6-5, 225). In his first season as a starter, Watford completed just over 57 percent of his passes, for 2,202 yards and eight TDs. Lambert played sparingly, but had a strong spring and has moved into the top spot for the job as the season is set to begin.

"Lambert is representative of what a player should be," London said. "I'm not saying anything against David, because David, again, is a young man that's very bright and very much a part of this team's success. But Greyson has taken the reins, and he's gone full steam ahead with them."

Senior wideout Darius Jennings (5-11, 175) is the top returning receiver after grabbing 38 balls, for 340 yards and three TDs last year. Parks (38 receptions, 329 yards, one TD) is also a capable pass catcher coming out of the backfield.

The Cavaliers are even more experienced on the defensive side of things, with nine starters returning. The best of the group is All-American safety Anthony Harris (6-1, 190), who is among the best at his position in the country. Harris racked up 80 tackles in 2013 and led the nation in interceptions with eight. Harris will be joined in the secondary by fellow senior Brandon Phelps (44 tackles).

The linebacking corps is well represented with the team's top two tacklers from last year returning in seniors Henry Coley (91 tackles, 9.0 TFL, one sack) and Daquan Romero (89 tackles, 6.5 TFL).

Up front, junior rush end Eli Harold is the centerpiece. As a sophomore in 2013, the 6-4, 235-pounder racked up 15 TFL and 8.5 sacks to pace the team in both categories.

Virginia played Pac-12 powerhouse Oregon last year and was no match for the Ducks (49-0). A similar fate could be awaiting the Cavaliers against a UCLA squad primed for a big season.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: UCLA 41, Virginia 14

08/29 15:18:26 ET

Other Stories

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Today at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Florida

    Today at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Waste Management Phoenix Open

    Today at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Big 10: Michigan at Michigan State

    Tomorrow at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Today at 12:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • ACC: Duke at Virginia

    Tonight at 7:00 on 620am

  • NHL: Hurricanes at NY Rangers

    Tonight at 7:00 on 99.9 The Fan

  • Super Bowl: Seattle vs. New England

    Tomorrow at 6:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 2
STL 3
12:00pm Today
GT
NCSU
 
4:00pm Today
LOU
UNC
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
CAR
 
7:00pm Tonight
UVA
DUKE
 
7:00pm Tonight
ETST
NCCU
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
CHA
 
Final
PHI 103
MIN 94
Final
BOS 87
HOU 93
Final
ATL 105
POR 99
Final
CLE 101
SAC 90
Final
BRK 122
TOR 127
Final
MIA 72
DAL 93
Final
NOP 108
LAC 103
Final
UTA 110
GSW 100
4th
PHO 70
CHI 67
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
DAL
 
7:00pm Tonight
IND
SAC
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAS
TOR
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
HOU
 
7:30pm Tonight
ATL
PHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
CLE
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
OKC
 
8:30pm Tonight
MIL
POR
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
CHA
 
9:00pm Tonight
SAN
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
PHO
 
Final
PRIN 72
HARV 75
 
Final
CORN 57
BRO 49
 
Final
PENN 58
DART 51
 
Final
NIAG 61
MAR 65
 
Final
CAN 63
QUIN 57
 
Final
MAN 87
SIENA 79
 
Final
WILL 63
IUPUI 59
 
Final
FAIR 59
MON 60
 
Final
ARST 67
OREG 68
Final
CLMB 59
YALE 63
 
Final
BUF 80
KSU 55
 
Final
ARZ 57
ORST 34
 
12:00pm Today
TENN
AUB
 
12:00pm Today
CLEM
BC
 
12:00pm Today
STJOE
DAVID
 
12:00pm Today
GT
NCSU
 
12:00pm Today
PITT
ND
 
12:00pm Today
STJ
PROV
 
12:00pm Today
UNH
USB
 
12:00pm Today
WVU
TTU
 
12:00pm Today
TEMPL
TULA
 
12:00pm Today
EMICH
WMICH
 
12:00pm Today
IOWA
WISC
 
12:00pm Today
SHU
XAV
 
1:00pm Today
UF
ARK
 
1:00pm Today
STET
LIP
 
1:00pm Today
ILL
PSU
 
1:00pm Today
TULSA
SFLA
 
1:05pm Today
INDST
BRAD
 
2:00pm Today
MAINE
GTDNS
 
2:00pm Today
UGST
ARKST
 
2:00pm Today
LEH
BU
 
2:00pm Today
MARQ
BUT
 
2:00pm Today
DEL
COC
 
2:00pm Today
CREI
GEOR
 
2:00pm Today
CLST
UWGB
 
2:00pm Today
NEOM
MAST
 
2:00pm Today
LOYC
ILLST
 
2:00pm Today
KU
KYST
 
2:00pm Today
JVU
KNST
 
2:00pm Today
MSST
LSU
 
2:00pm Today
SHU
MNTER
 
2:00pm Today
VCU
RICH
 
2:00pm Today
ISU
TCU
 
2:00pm Today
BING
MLOWELL
 
2:00pm Today
HART
VERM
 
2:00pm Today
DEP
VILL
 
2:00pm Today
WAKE
VT
 
3:00pm Today
FAM
COOK
 
3:00pm Today
NDAK
IDST
 
3:00pm Today
ARMY
GHND
 
3:00pm Today
BEL
TENT
 
3:00pm Today
TXSA
UAB
 
3:00pm Today
ILLCH
VALPO
 
3:05pm Today
DRAK
EVAN
 
3:15pm Today
IND
RUTG
 
3:30pm Today
UMO
BST
 
4:00pm Today
RMU
BRY
 
4:00pm Today
WAGN
CCST
 
4:00pm Today
GWEBB
CCAR
 
4:00pm Today
MDES
COPST
 
4:00pm Today
RFLSH
FD
 
4:00pm Today
RIU
GWU
 
4:00pm Today
SCAR
UGA
 
4:00pm Today
Terriers
LIU
 
4:00pm Today
PAC
LMU
 
4:00pm Today
STLU
UMASS
 
4:00pm Today
HOW
MRGST
 
4:00pm Today
DREX
UNCW
 
4:00pm Today
LOU
UNC
 
4:00pm Today
MIZZ
MISS
 
4:00pm Today
ALCOR
SOUTH
 
4:00pm Today
NIOWA
WICHS
 
4:00pm Today
JMU
WMARY
 
4:00pm Today
RAD
WINT
 
4:15pm Today
EILL
SIUE
 
4:30pm Today
UNCA
CAMP
 
4:30pm Today
MORE
EKENT
 
4:30pm Today
NICST
INCWORD
 
4:30pm Today
CMICH
OHIO
 
4:30pm Today
TEXAM
VANDY
 
5:00pm Tonight
UWMIL
DET
 
5:00pm Tonight
LAMON
SALA
 
5:00pm Tonight
UNCG
WCU
 
5:05pm Tonight
EWASH
IDAHO
 
5:30pm Tonight
SDKST
DEN
 
5:30pm Tonight
SHSU
HOUB
 
5:30pm Tonight
MVSU
JST
 
5:30pm Tonight
TXST
LALAF
 
5:30pm Tonight
LATU
MARS
 
5:30pm Tonight
SD
ORU
 
6:00pm Tonight
PVU
ALAAM
 
6:00pm Tonight
GRAM
ARKPB
 
6:00pm Tonight
PRIN
DART
 
6:00pm Tonight
SCST
DELST
 
6:00pm Tonight
COLST
FRES
 
6:00pm Tonight
NORST
HAMP
 
6:00pm Tonight
MINN
NEB
 
6:00pm Tonight
WYO
NEV
 
6:00pm Tonight
SAV
NCAT
 
6:00pm Tonight
GAELS
PEPP
 
6:00pm Tonight
NW
PURD
 
6:00pm Tonight
BAY
TEX
 
6:00pm Tonight
CHAT
CITA
 
6:00pm Tonight
SMISS
WKENT
 
6:00pm Tonight
CORN
YALE
 
7:00pm Tonight
LAM
ABCHRIST
 
7:00pm Tonight
BGU
AKR
 
7:00pm Tonight
KENT
ALA
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLMB
BRO
 
7:00pm Tonight
LIB
CSOU
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUCK
COL
 
7:00pm Tonight
UVA
DUKE
 
7:00pm Tonight
NE
ELON
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHAR
FIU
 
7:00pm Tonight
ODU
FATL
 
7:00pm Tonight
SAMF
FUR
 
7:00pm Tonight
DUQ
GMAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
PENN
HARV
 
7:00pm Tonight
LBSU
HAW
 
7:00pm Tonight
BONA
LAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
NAVY
LAF
 
7:00pm Tonight
PBY
LONG
 
7:00pm Tonight
WOFF
MERC
 
7:00pm Tonight
ETST
NCCU
 
7:00pm Tonight
MCNST
NO
 
7:00pm Tonight
FLGC
NKENTUCKY
 
7:00pm Tonight
IONA
PETE
 
7:00pm Tonight
STEPH
TAMCC
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNF
USCU
 
7:30pm Tonight
GSOUT
ARKLR
 
8:00pm Tonight
UCR
CSNO
 
8:00pm Tonight
SELA
NWST
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKST
OKLA
 
8:00pm Tonight
UNT
RICE
 
8:00pm Tonight
SDU
USF
 
8:00pm Tonight
NMU
SJST
 
8:00pm Tonight
PEAY
SEMIZ
 
8:00pm Tonight
NILL
TOL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOF
TOWS
 
8:00pm Tonight
SMU
UCF
 
8:00pm Tonight
MURST
TENNM
 
8:00pm Tonight
SDST
UTST
 
8:05pm Tonight
MIZST
SILL
 
8:15pm Tonight
TXARL
TROY
 
8:30pm Tonight
TXSOU
ALAST
 
8:30pm Tonight
TENST
JVST
 
8:30pm Tonight
WASU
STAN
 
9:00pm Tonight
GRCN
CHIST
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTEP
MTST
 
9:00pm Tonight
SUTAH
NARZ
 
9:00pm Tonight
BYU
SCU
 
9:00pm Tonight
NMST
TXPA
 
9:00pm Tonight
NCOL
WEBER
 
10:00pm Tonight
UNLV
AFA
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCD
CPSL
 
10:00pm Tonight
GONZ
MEM
 
10:00pm Tonight
CALST
SEAT
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCI
UCSB
 
10:05pm Tonight
SACST
MONT
 
10:05pm Tonight
PORST
MNTST
 
10:30pm Tonight
UCLA
COL
 
10:30pm Tonight
WLVRN
UMKC
 
Final
NJD 1
PIT 2
Final
CAR 2
STL 3
Final
COL 3
NAS 0
3rd
ANA 1
CHI 4
 
1:00pm Today
MON
WAS
 
2:00pm Today
DET
NYI
 
3:00pm Today
OTT
ARI
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
CAR
 
7:00pm Tonight
WIN
DAL
 
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
FLA
 
7:00pm Tonight
BOS
LOS
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
TOR
 
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
CLB
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
EDM
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
CHI