No certain word on Olson return

Times Staff Writer

Quarterback Ben Olson’s status remains an open question, as UCLA officials were unable to say whether he has been cleared to resume practice after undergoing exertion tests Friday.

Olson is expected to be re-evaluated before the team practices this week.

Olson is suffering from concussion-like symptoms after being repeatedly hammered during a 44-6 loss to Utah on Sept. 15. Patrick Cowan started in Olson’s place against Washington on Saturday.


“I don’t know how it happened,” Olson said this week. “I took some shots. I think everything added up. I have never had anything like this.”

Besides Olson, the Bruins were without guard Shannon Tevaga (knee), linebacker Aaron Whittington (concussion), wide receiver Marcus Everett (ankle), defensive end Nikola Dragovic (concussion) and defensive tackle Brigham Harwell (knee). All are starters.

The Bruins have been without last year’s starting fullback Michael Pitre (knee) all season.

Cowan had a milestone with his first pass attempt Saturday. Cowan took three steps back and zipped a pass to his brother, Joe, for a 13-yard gain. It was the first time they connected on the field since coming to UCLA.

Patrick Cowan, a junior, got limited playing time until last season, when he started eight games

Joe, a senior, missed all of last season because of a knee injury.

Footing didn’t seem to be a problem for either team, despite sporadic hard rain Friday night and Saturday morning. The Rose Bowl field was covered overnight with a tarp, which wasn’t removed until 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

Brian Price’s UCLA career became official with 10 minutes 36 seconds left in the second quarter. The freshman tackle was sent into the game with the goal-line defense for his first play. He was not in on the tackle.

Price, considered the Bruins’ top recruit, was unable to practice or play until the NCAA Clearinghouse approved his paperwork Monday.

UCLA receiver Gavin Ketchum left the game with an injury to his right ankle. Ketchum was injured while making a 23-yard reception for a first down in the second quarter.

The last time Washington beat UCLA in the Rose Bowl was Nov. 11, 1995, when the Huskies came away with a 38-14 victory. The last time Washington won in the Rose Bowl was when the Huskies defeated Purdue, 34-24, Jan. 1, 2001.

Freshman tailback Raymond Carter, out for the season after knee surgery, will step up his rehabilitation this week, as he will be allowed to remove the knee brace he has been wearing.

Carter, a top recruit from Crenshaw High, sustained an injury to his right knee the second day of practice in August. He has said he hopes to be ready by spring practice.