UCLA defeats Nevada in season opener, 58-20

UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley breaks away to score a first-quarter touchdown against Nevada on Saturday.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

UCLA has finished off an impressive season-opening win over Nevada, 58-20, at the Rose Bowl Saturday night.

The Bruins broke open a close game with two quick touchdowns early in the third quarter and were all but unstoppable after that.

Quarterback Brett Hundley completed 22 of 33 passes -- to 10 different receivers -- for 274 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for two touchdowns, gaining 61 yards in eight carries.

Jordon James led the rushing attack with 155 yards and a touchdown in 21 carries. Shaquelle Evans had six catches for 81 yards and a touchdown and gained 52 yards on two punt returns.


Nevada quarterback Cody Fajardo, a junior from Anaheim Servite High, kept the Wolf Pack in the game for a while with a tough and athletic performance.

He completed 19 of 32 passes for 164 yards and ran 22 times for 106 yards and two touchdowns.


UCLA 58, Nevada 20, 7:50 left in fourth quarter

New quarterback, a third-team running back, couple of new linemen ... and the beat goes on.

UCLA cannot be stopped. At least not by Nevada.

Malcolm Jones scored from one yard out -- his second rushing touchdown in a little more than two minutes.

The 33-yard drive was set up by a 33-yard punt return by Shaquelle Evans.

Backup quarterback Jerry Neuheisel connected with Logan Sweet on a 21-yard pass that set up Jones’ scoring run.


Jerry Neuheisel now into the game at quarterback for UCLA.


UCLA 51, Nevada 20, 10:06 left in fourth quarter

Malcolm Jones has come all the way back.

The former Gatorade national high school player of the year left UCLA’s program before last season; asked to come back as a non-scholarship player before this season; and earned a scholarship with his work during spring and summer training camps.

Now he’s made the end zone.

Jones took a short pass from Brett Hundley and burst loose for 25 yards, looking fast and strong.


UCLA 44, Nevada 20, 12:07 left in fourth quarter

UCLA is doing Chandler High in Arizona proud.

The Bruins just scored on an all-Chandler High drive, with two graduates of the school -- Brett Hundley and running back Paul Perkins -- doing all the damage.

Perkins, a redshirt freshman, scored on a three-yard run and also had gains of two and 45 yards on the drive.

Hundley had a three-yard run and completed two passes for 32 yards.


UCLA 37, Nevada 20, 14:25 left in fourth quarter

As good as UCLA and Brett Hundley look, there is another very impressive quarterback performing at the Rose Bowl tonight.

Cody Fajardo, a junior from Anaheim Servite, has kept this from being a total blowout.

Farjardo just scored on a run for the second time tonight, this time on a 19-yard run.

He has 107 yards rushing in 20 carries and has completed 19 of 29 passes for 164 yards.


UCLA 37, Nevada 13, 4:01 left in third quarter

UCLA is clicking so well right now that it doesn’t matter if a touchdown gets called back.

Two plays after a 36-yard scoring pass from Brett Hundley to Devin Fuller was called back for offensive pass interference away from the ball, Jordon James raced 36 yards for a touchdown that stuck.

A two-point pass on the conversion try fell incomplete.

James is doing a nice Johnathan Franklin imitation. He has run for 155 yards in 21 carries.

Hundley has completed 17 of 25 passes for 195 yards.


UCLA 31, Nevada 13, 9:57 left in third quarter

A big play by the UCLA defense has finally given the Bruins some breathing room.

Kenny Orjioke laid out to block a Chase Tenpenny punt and Phillip Ruhl latched onto the bouncing ball and returned it four yards for a touchdown.

So, just when it looked like things were turning in Nevada’s favor, UCLA has scored twice in a little more than five minutes.


UCLA 24, Nevada 13, 11:03 left in third quarter

So much for any momentum Nevada may have carried over from that last-minute score just before halftime.

Brett Hundley scored on an 11-yard run less than four minutes into the half.

Hundley has run for 60 yards and two touchdowns in six carries.


UCLA leads Nevada, 17-13, at halftime at the Rose Bowl.

Some statistics from a closer-than-expected first half:

UCLA holds a 283-246 advantage in total yardage.

Bruins quarterback Brett Hundley has completed 10 of 17 passes for 111 yards and a touchdown. He also has run three times for 36 yards and a touchdown.

Hundley, a national award candidate, has been matched by Nevada’s Cody Fajardo, a junior from Anaheim Servite High.

Fajardo has completed 12 of 17 passes for 106 yards and run 14 times for 77 yards and a touchdown.

Jordan James of UCLA leads all rushers with 108 yards in 14 carries.


UCLA 17, Nevada 13, 0:07 left in second quarter

Nevada just did what it needed to do -- put the ball in the end zone (for the first time).

Quarterback Cody Fajardo dove in from a yard out, culminating a march in which he did a little of everything.

Fajardo passed for 36 yards and ran for 23 on the 82-yard drive.

He had a 14-yard run that was ruled a 15-yard touchdown on the field before being overturned by video review. He hurdled UCLA linebacker Jordan Zumwalt on that one.


UCLA 17, Nevada 6, 2:15 left in second quarter

Nevada is going to have to start scoring touchdowns instead of field goals. Otherwise this game is going to start quickly slipping away.

UCLA’s offense -- in combination with a questionable Nevada defense -- is just too potent.

The Bruins drove 73 yards in 10 plays, and looked sharp doing it.

Jordon James had a 14-yard run; Steven Manfro added a nifty 20-yard gain; and the touchdown came on a five-yard pass from Brett Hundley to Shaquelle Evans.

The pass was to Evans’ back shoulder, and he turned and made a nice catch.


UCLA 10, Nevada 6, 5:51 left in second quarter

An impressive drive engineered by quarterback Cody Fajardo bogged down inside the UCLA 10 and the Wolf Pack had to settle for a 21-yard field goal by Brent Zuzo.

Actually, it looked like Nevada wasn’t going to settle, it was going to fake a kick and run. But a lineman started early and officials called a false start penalty.

Fajardo gained 35 yards rushing on what was a 12-play, 79-yard drive.


UCLA 10, Nevada 3, 11:23 left in second quarter

A 40-yard field goal by Ka’imi Fairbairn capped a 15-play, 72-yard drive for the Bruins.

Jordon James ran for 25 yards in four carries on the possession. He already has 76 yards in 10 carries.


A nifty 27-yard run by Jordon James gave the Bruins a chance to put more points on the board, but kicker Ka’imi Fairbairn missed a 48-yard field-goal try.


UCLA 7, Nevada 3, 4:00 left in the first quarter

There’s a reason Anaheim Servite High won a state title with Fajardo at quarterback.

The junior converted three of four third-down plays in marching Nevada from its own 25 as far as the UCLA 6.

The Wolf Pack are on the board with a 28-yard field goal by Brent Zuzo.


UCLA 7, Nevada 0, 10:38 left in the first quarter

That Brett Hundley is a fast starter.

He scored on a long run the first time he took a snap last season, and he has UCLA on the board early at the Rose Bowl.

Hundley faked a handoff to Steven Manfro and sprinted 37 yards for a touchdown.

UCLA covered 83 yards in eight plays.


Nevada, with former Anaheim Servite High star Cody Fajardo at quarterback, goes three and out in first possession.


Things have heated up at the Rose Bowl -- and the game hasn’t even started.

The temperature 20 minutes before UCLA and Nevada kickoff was 85 degrees, with 45% humidity, Times reporter Chris Foster says.

UCLA Coach Jim Mora waxed poetic this week about filling the stadium: “Wouldn’t it great to get 100,000 in the Rose Bowl.”

It looks like it will be a little short. OK, a lot short.

There is a sparse crowd, though late arrivers are the norm in Los Angeles.


UCLA’s game against Nevada in the Rose Bowl Saturday night is another foray into the Mountain West Conference for the Bruins.

They have had their troubles, Times reporter Chris Foster points out, with a 3-3 record against the conference since 2007.

That included two of the program’s most embarrassing losses in recent years, 59-0 to Brigham Young in 2008 and 44-6 to Utah in 2007.

Both games were in Utah. The Bruins also lost to Brigham Young, 17-16, in the 2007 MAACO Las Vegas Bowl.

Nevada joined the Mountain West Conference in 2012.


Bruins look to take steps to the next level

UCLA vs. Nevada: How the teams match up

Nevada not buying the odds for Saturday’s game