UCLA has an open date this week, so Coach Rick Neuheisel said, “Some guys will get a crash course.” Brett Hundley falls into that category.
Hundley, a freshman quarterback, was elevated to No. 2 on the depth chart after Richard Brehaut suffered a broken bone in his lower left leg against Washington State.
Kevin Prince re-emerged as the Bruins’ starter. Hundley is the next in line.
“If my number is called, I know I can produce,” Hundley said. “But the results will show when I get on the field.”
At practice Tuesday, Hundley saw the middle of the field open up and tight end Joseph Fauria behind the defensive back. Fauria made the catch for a 30-yard gain.
“It was like one-two-three and throw the ball,” Hundley said. “That’s what I’m noticing now, I’m dropping back and not even thinking, just throwing.”
Moments later, Hundley was doing five pushups for holding the ball too far from his body while he scrambled. He laughed afterward and said, “I don’t know where that came from. … It was, ‘All right, Coach, let’s get it done and move on.’ ”
So goes the Hundley learning curve.
Hundley was hoping to redshirt this season. Neuheisel had flirted with having a “package” of plays for him to use in games but was also leaning toward holding him out this season.
“My dad, Coach Neuheisel and I always talk about it,” Hundley said. “The further you get in the season, the more you would like to save the year. But I trust Neuheisel’s decision.”
The decision to play Hundley probably would come only if Prince were injured.
As to whether Hundley is ready for such an assignment, Neuhesiel said, “I’ll know more this time next week. I feel, given the situation, he’ll be ready. His urgency will go up experientially.”
Brehaut’s injury, meanwhile, was less severe than originally believed.
“It was a clean break,” Neuheisel said. “There is every reason to believe he will make it back” before the end of the season.
Wide receivers Nelson Rosario (sprained foot) and Shaquelle Evans (concussion symptoms) did not practice Tuesday.
Evans was injured after catching the game-winning touchdown pass against Washington State.
“I was running and falling in, because I knew I was going to score, and the safety tried to jump over me and caught his knee on the side of my helmet,” Evans said. “It knocked me out. My body was limp for a minute.”
Starting safety Tony Dye, meanwhile, remains sidelined because of a nerve problem in his neck.
“We’re resting him to see if whatever’s ailing him will subside,” Neuheisel said. “Ultimately, we’ll make a decision on what his future is this season.”
Dye, a senior, has sat out the last three games and has a redshirt season available to him.
Cornerback Sheldon Price (knee injury), safety Alex Mascarenas (concussion) and cornerback Jamie Graham also sat out practice.