Last Saturday night, Skip Hicks should have been celebrating his first game as a starting running back. He gained 148 yards, scored UCLA’s only touchdown and had a a 53-yard touchdown run called back because of a holding penalty.
Hicks played better than anyone expected in UCLA’s 14-13 loss to Nebraska. And besides, his sister was visiting from Wichita Falls, Tex.
But instead of going out, Hicks sat in his dormitory room talking by phone to Texas friends, watching TV and eating pizza, his first meal of the day. He had been too nervous to eat before the game.
His left foot was elevated and on ice to try to stop the swelling.
“Most of the rest of the guys went to a restaurant to watch the (Stanford-Colorado) game in Westwood,” he said.
Hicks’ game came to an abrupt end on the first play of the fourth quarter when a Nebraska player fell on him after a 23-yard run.
“It kind of bent my foot to the side,” Hicks said.
He will not play against Stanford this week. His days are spent in therapy, with morning and afternoon sessions, and he walks awkwardly with crutches, when he remembers to use them. He can only watch football practice and doesn’t even have classwork to occupy his time. Classes do not begin until next week.
The Bruins are short at a few positions, chief among them tight end, where Brian Richards injured a knee and will not play against Stanford. That leaves Troy Aldrich and Steve Blinn, a non-scholarship player, available. Brian Allen is starting to practice again after arthroscopic knee surgery. The Bruins have not completed a pass to a tight end all season.
Others who probably won’t play against Stanford: center James Christensen (knee) and wide receiver Avery Anderson (hamstring). Wide receiver Bryan Adams (hamstring) also is questionable. . . . Tailback Daron Washington, who started the season opener against California, is expected to return. He did not play against Nebraska because of an ankle sprain.