The UCLA Bruins (0-2) play host to the Fresno State Bulldogs (1-1) at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Rose Bowl. This nonconference football game might not have a big-game feel, but its importance is palpable for the Bruins as they try to avoid their first 0-3 start since 1971 while notching victory No. 1 of the Chip Kelly coaching era. A key matchup will be UCLA’s offensive line, which has given up 11 sacks and 20 tackles for losses, against in inexperienced Fresno State front four. Join us here for live updates throughout the game.
UCLA falls to Fresno State 38-14
Plagued by turnovers and penalties, UCLA fell to Fresno State 38-14 Saturday night.
The Bruins allowed the Bulldogs to total 420 yards on offense, including four rushing touchdowns by Marcus McMaryion.
The Bruins were called for 11 penalties, costing them 96 yards — a rough pairing with their four turnovers that allowed Fresno State 17 points. UCLA converted just one of its 10 third-down attempts while allowing Fresno State to convert 12 of 18 third-down plays.
The loss made UCLA 0-3 for the first time since 1971 as the Bruins enter their bye week.
Fresno State recovers UCLA’s fumble in 4th quarter
Fresno State recovered UCLA’s fumble in the fourth quarter to gain possession on its own 38-yard line.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson hurled a 33-yard pass to Chase Cota, but Jaron Bryant stripped the ball from Cota’s hands after Cota secured the catch. James Bailey quickly secured the ball for Fresno State.
The turnover was UCLA’s fourth of the game, allowing the Bulldogs to score 17 additional points.
McMaryion scores 4th rushing touchdown to give Frenso State 38-14 lead
Marcus McMaryion bolted two yards to the end zone late in the third quarter — his fourth rushing touchdown of the game — extending Fresno State’s lead over UCLA to 38-14.
Fresno State gained possession after Jeff Allison intercepted Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s pass for the second time. The Bulldogs strung together a seven-play, 55-yard scoring drive that took slightly over three minutes.
McMaryion put the Bulldogs in position with a 38-yard pass to Jamire Jordan, and the running back corps took over from there, with short rushes from Josh Hokit and Jordan Mims to bring Fresno State closer to scoring range.
McMaryion closed out the drive with the rushing touchdown. He has 262 passing yards and 16 rushing yards, with one passing touchdown and four rushing.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson throws 2nd interception in 3rd quarter
Following a UCLA offensive drive that ended with an interception, Dorian Thompson-Robinson was picked off again.
The Bruins’ drive started out promising, as Thompson-Robinson completed three of his four pass attempts for 29 yards, aided by nine rushing yards by Kazmeir Allen. But on second down on Fresno State’s 27-yard line, Thompson-Robinson threw a pass that was again intercepted by Jeff Allison.
Allison returned the pick for 23 yards before he was taken down at Fresno State’s 45-yard line, leaving Thompson-Robinson having completed eight of his 20 pass attempts.
Jordan Mims sparks Fresno State to take 31-7 lead with touchdown
Sparked by a 45-yard catch-and-run play by Jordan Mims, Fresno State drove to the end zone once again, taking a 31-14 lead over UCLA late in the third quarter.
The drive began after an interception by Dorian Thompson-Robinson, and the Bulldogs gave the ball to Mims immediately. He contributed a 2-yard run before the explosive run.
Mims and Dejonte O’Neal each contributed short rushes before McMaryion completed the rushing touchdown.
Fresno State picks off Dorian Thompson-Robinson
On the drive after Fresno State scored a touchdown with a two-point conversion, Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s pass attempt was picked off, giving the ball back to Fresno State.
Jeff Allison picked off Thompson-Robinson’s pass, returning the ball four yards before being taken down at Fresno State’s 45-yard line. It was Thompson-Robinson’s first interception of the game, his first of the season.
Fresno State takes 10-point lead with McMaryion’s rushing touchdown
With a 1-yard rush by Marcus McMaryion, Fresno State scored a touchdown, then a two-point conversion to extend its lead over UCLA to 24-14.
Fresno State had a 49-yard run by Jordan Mims called back for a holding penalty but still inched its way toward the end zone. McMaryion completed three passes, including a 23-yard and 24-yard passes KeeSea Johnson.
Mims, who has totaled 57 yards in 13 carries, brought the Bulldogs within a yard of scoring. McMaryion finished the drive with a rushing touchdown, then back-up quarterback Jorge Reyna delivered the extra-point attempt with a pass to Gunner Javernick.
Bolu Olorunfunmi scores rushing touchdown for UCLA, Bruins trail Fresno State 16-14
After getting possession in the red zone on a punt return fumble recovery, UCLA converted the storing opportunity into a touchdown with a 6-yard rush by Bolu Olorunfunmi, cutting Fresno State’s lead to 16-14.
The three-play drive started with an 11-yard run by Dorian Thompson-Robinson, then bolstered by a 1-yard run by Soso Jamabo and a personal foul penalty against Fresno State that gave the Bruins a first down.
Olorunfunmi, who has five net rushing yards in three carries, finished off the score for UCLA. The run-heavy drive was part of a balanced Bruins offense that has totaled 86 passing yards and 88 rushing yards.
UCLA recovers fumble on Fresno State punt return
Longsnapper Johnny Den Bleker recovered a fumble on Fresno State’s punt return, giving UCLA possession on the Bulldogs’ 17-yard line.
After UCLA failed to convert a third-down attempt, Collin Flintoft completed a 56-yard punt for the Bruins that KeeSea Johnson returned for Fresno State. But Johnson fumbled the return, giving UCLA possession in the red zone.
UCLA trails Fresno State 16-7 at halftime
After a rough first quarter for UCLA, Fresno State maintains a 16-7 lead at the half.
The Bulldogs took a 13-0 lead in the first quarter with back-to-back touchdowns, as Marcus McMaryion completed 15 of his 24 attempts in the half for 123 passing yards.
UCLA managed one successful touchdown drive, sparked by a fumble recovery on defense, but the Bruins struggled otherwise. Dorian Thompson-Robinson completed five of his 11 attempts, and UCLA converted only one of six third-down plays.
Theo Howard was a bright spot for UCLA, with three catches for 63 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown catch. The Bruins struggled avoiding penalties, totaling seven for 73 yards in the half.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson connects with Theo Howard for 45-yard touchdown pass
Dorian Thompson-Robinson connected to lead the Bruins to their first touchdown of the game to trail the Bulldogs 16-7.
After managing only one completion against Fresno State’s defense in UCLA’s first three drives, Thompson-Robinson completed two of three attempts in the scoring drive, which started when the Bruins’ defense recovered a Fresno State fumble.
At first, UCLA’s chances looked bleak, as the Bruins third-down attempt, an incomplete pass intended for Dymond Lee, failed. But Thompson-Robinson completed his next pass, a 6-yard throw to Theo Howard, on fourth down to keep the drive alive.
After the Bruins were set back 15 yards for a personal foul penalty, Thompson-Robinson connected with Howard again, for 45 yards to deliver the Bruins their first touchdown of the game. The drive five-play, 43-yard drive took less than two minutes.
UCLA recovers Fresno State fumble in 2nd quarter
As Marcus McMaryion dropped back to pass, Keisean Lucier-South stripped the ball away. Odua Isabor recovered, giving UCLA possession on Fresno State’s 43-yard line.
The play marked Lucier-South’s second forced fumble of his career and first of the season. It came as the Bruins trailed the Bulldogs 16-0. Fresno State only managed a 1-yard rush and an incomplete pass on the offensive drive before losing possession.
Fresno State extends lead to 16-0 with field goal
Fresno State extended its lead over UCLA to 16-0, when Asa Fuller knocked a 29-yard field goal for the Bulldogs.
The drive began when Fresno State recovered Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s fumble, but the Bruins had better luck slowing the Bulldog offense on this drive.
Marcus McMaryion completed one of his three pass attempts, and Dejonte O’Neal managed a 1-yard rush as UCLA shut down Fresno State on third down for the first time in the game.
Fuller missed his first kick of the game, an extra-point attempt that went wide left, but he completed the field goal to give the Bulldogs a comfortable lead in the second quarter.
Fresno State recovers UCLA fumble in 1st quarter
Fresno State recovered a UCLA fumble on the Bruins’ 38-yard line, giving the Bulldogs prime field position for their third drive.
After UCLA picked up its second first-down of the drive, Dorian Thompson-Robinson attempted a rush, only to lose the football one yard past the line of scrimmage. Fresno State recovered Thompson-Robinson’s lost possession.
UCLA struggled in its opening drive as well. Thompson-Robinson did not complete his lone pass attempt and endured a 12-yard sack.
The second drive started promising. Thompson-Robinson opened with a 9-yard rush, and Martell Irby contributed a 12-yard run later to give UCLA the first down.
But the Bruins’ luck did not last, and the first quarter ended with Fresno State maintaining a 13-0 lead in field goal range.
Marcus McMaryion leads Fresno State in second straight touchdown drive
With on-point passing from Marcus McMaryion, Fresno State scored its second straight touchdown against UCLA, taking a 13-0 lead in the first quarter.
McMaryion completed all five of his passes on the eight-play, 75-yard scoring drive, including a 37-yard pass to Jared Rice.
McMaryion darted nine yards to put the Bulldogs on UCLA’s 8-yard line and closed out the drive with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Riddering. The Bulldogs’ second drive of the game took less than four minutes.
Fresno State strikes early with touchdown to lead 6-0
Marcus McMaryion bolted into the end zone in Fresno State’s opening drive to give the Bulldogs a 6-0 lead in the first quarter.
The drive took less than five minutes and began on Fresno State’s 25-yard line. The Bulldog offense was balanced as it worked its way down the field, totaling 24 rushing yards as McMaryion completed four of his six passes.
After McMaryion scored the 1-yard rushing touchdown, Asa Fuller’s extra-point attempt veered wide of the field goal posts, leaving Fresno State with a 6-0 lead.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson appears to be starting quarterback for UCLA
In a less-than-startling development, UCLA true freshman quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson appears set to make his second consecutive start when the Bruins play host to Fresno State on Saturday night at the Rose Bowl.
Thompson-Robinson tweeted “LET’S BE GREAT TODAY” about 10 hours before kickoff and then led players out of the tunnel onto the field about an hour before the game.
Graduate transfer Wilton Speight, recovering from a back injury suffered during UCLA’s season-opening loss to Cincinnati, did not appear in uniform with the other quarterbacks when they came out for warmup tosses.
Thompson-Robinson had a strong showing in defeat against Oklahoma last week, completing 16 of 26 passes for 254 yards and one touchdown with no interceptions.
Now he’ll try to lead the Bruins (0-2) to the first victory of the coach Chip Kelly era.
Bruins’ game against Fresno State is a big one for the Chip Kelly era
UCLA coach Chip Kelly likes to say that every game is the Super Bowl. It’s a mantra intended to steady his team’s focus and remind players that no game is more important than any other.
Kelly used the phrase while he was at Oregon to suppress rivalry hype or keep a heavily favored team engaged in its preparation for what was expected to be a blowout victory.
Its usage could take on a different meaning Saturday night at the Rose Bowl, where Kelly will coach a winless team against a small-conference opponent in what could be a half-empty stadium.
UCLA (0-2) versus Fresno State (1-1) may not have a big-game feel, but its importance is palpable for the Bruins as they try to avoid their first 0-3 start since 1971 while notching victory No. 1 of the Kelly era.
“These guys have worked very, very hard and we need to get on the right side of the win-loss column,” Kelly said this week. “So it’s a big game from that standpoint.”
Bruins vs. Bulldogs: A look at how UCLA and Fresno State match up
UCLA (0-2) vs. Fresno State (1-1)
Saturday, 7:30 p.m., Rose Bowl. TV: FS1. Radio: 570, 1150, 97.3.
UCLA’s offensive line versus Fresno State’s defensive line. The Bruins have allowed 11 sacks, 20 tackles for losses and four quarterback hurries in two games but don’t appear to be facing as ferocious a pass rush Saturday. The Bulldogs feature four new starters along their defensive line and have totaled just two sacks, including one last weekend against Minnesota true freshman quarterback Zack Annexstad.