05 May 2022 | 08:13
LOS ANGELES – The UCLA football spring schedule is still a week away, but the scheduled date is set for the Saturday when the annual spring rollout takes place.
Unlike games, students won’t have to walk far, with the showcase being held at 9 a.m. on campus at Drake Stadium.
While practice sessions have been open to the public throughout the spring at Spaulding Field, Saturday will be the only time until fall when fans can watch the team in a more formal atmosphere, like a stadium.
Here are a few things to see at UCLA’s spring rollout:
Unlike USC – which hosts a live-action script during the spring game that also happens on Saturday – the UCLA rollout will be “just another practice session,” head coach Chip Kelly said at the start. this week.
It will describe offensive behavior against the defense, but in a controlled situational context — like each UCLA action this spring. Kelly highlighted a different aspect of the game each day, such as the two-minute drills, red zone work, and third focus.
Kelly said coaches will try to touch everything they can reach on film for a game. But the fifth-year UCLA coach isn’t too concerned with throwing his players into an all-out practice match.
“Sometimes if you just build the script and the ball doesn’t go to the red zone, you won’t get to the red zone [work],” Kelly said. “We will specifically move the ball according to the situation to different positions on the field. And then try to get involved in a number of different situations. ”
The rollout will likely resemble any of the 15 UCLA allotted activities this spring, except for any that Kelly wants to keep private because the Pac-12 Network will be broadcast live. next.
But it will reach far fewer households than USC’s spring game at the Colosseum, which is being televised nationally on ESPN. When asked about teams across town winning the exposure battle, Kelly responded with indifference.
“I don’t think the spring games matter in terms of what people are watching,” Kelly said. “You will have to look at the numbers, from a demographic point of view. I can’t tell you what the viewership for the spring game is like.”
UCLA’s prolific offense returns two main starters – quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson and backrunner Zach Charbonnet – who are hungry for the Pac-12 title and perhaps a Rose Bowl Game appearance to advance their college career.
Work began in the spring ball, where Thompson-Robinson made passes like a veteran player and Charbonnet looked noticeably larger. Fans will get a peek at what the duo looks like and whether they’ll develop any new tools in preparation for the season.
If violated, the Bruins must replace their top three receivers from last season, with wide receiver Kyle Philips and Greg Dulcich closing tight claims for the NFL draft and wide receiver Chase Cota moving to Oregon.
Looking for returnees Kam Brown and Kazmeir Allen to play a bigger role without Philips. The Duke Jake Bobo wide receiver also impressed during spring practice. At the close close, Michael Ezeike will have the opportunity to replace Dulcich.
The three people who started on the way to attack were also gone. Those hoping to compete for a start defending Thompson-Robinson include Garrett DiGiorgio, Josh Carlin and Tyler Manoa, who have moved in from defence.
Aside from Bobo, a number of transfers have shown signs of turning around, especially as new defensive coordinator Bill McGovern works on his plan. His defense caused some headaches for fouls in practice.
Winger Darius Muasau (Hawaii) and full-back Azizi Hearn (Wyoming) are veterans who can start right away. Muasau split time with Caleb Johnson during training inside midfield before Johnson entered the transfer window. Hearn will be looking to add an extra player who struggled to defend the pass last season.
Murphy twins, Gabriel and Grayson, from North Texas could also make an immediate entry as fast runners.
While the spring rollout is shaping up to be nothing more than a glorified act, Kelly said he’s looking forward to seeing fans for the first time in two years.
After the two-hour showcase, the players will hold an autograph session with fans.
“Especially after COVID, we didn’t have a fan for two years,” Kelly said. “It is an opportunity. It’s a bit of a return to normalcy because of what everyone’s been through, so I think it’s important that our players here have a chance to get back into their fan base. we. “
When: Saturday, 9 am
Where: Drake Stadium at UCLA
How to attend: Free admission. No ticket needed.
How to watch: Pac-12 . Network