Dorian Thompson-Robinson and UCLA dominate in 42-14 win over Cal

UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson runs with the ball during the first half.
UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson runs with the ball against Cal at the Rose Bowl on Saturday.
(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

After last week’s rivalry win over USC, UCLA finishes off the regular season strong in a 42-14 victory over California at the Rose Bowl on Saturday.

UCLA dominates against Cal to enter bowl season on a wave of momentum

UCLA defensive back Martell Irby, center, reacts to a play during the second half of the Bruins' 42-14 win.
UCLA defensive back Martell Irby, center, reacts to a play during the second half of the Bruins’ 42-14 win over California at the Rose Bowl on Saturday.
(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

Chip Kelly would dismiss it, wouldn’t want to hear it and probably would cut off the suggestion in mid-sentence.

His UCLA Bruins have some momentum heading into their first bowl game in four years.

UCLA’s 42-14 victory over California on Saturday night at the Rose Bowl that included 32 consecutive points from the second to fourth quarters gave the Bruins a third consecutive victory for only the second time in Kelly’s four seasons.

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UCLA dominates in second half to defeat Cal 42-14

UCLA 42, Cal 14 — FINAL

The Bruins could have given up a garbage-time touchdown to Cal, but they didn’t.

After Cal pieced together their best drive of the half, they were thwarted at the goal line when Chase Garbers threw an incomplete pass on fourth-and-goal from the UCLA one-yard line. It marked the third time tonight the Bruins stymied the Golden Bears on fourth down.

UCLA’s domination of Garbers allowed his younger brother — Bruins backup quarterback Ethan Garbers — to see some playing time on the Bruins’ final possession.

UCLA ends the regular season at 8-4, the Bruins’ best season under Chip Kelly. Cal falls to 4-7 heading into its finale against USC next week.


Dorian Thompson-Robinson too much for Cal to contain

UCLA 42, Cal 14 — 8:53 fourth quarter

UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson capped off his most exciting drive of the game so far with a five-yard touchdown pass to receiver Kyle Philips to further extend the Bruins’ ballooning lead.

With not much to lose, Cal tried throwing everything at Thompson-Robinson on the Bruins’ latest possession, but the versatile signal-caller found ways to escape pressure and connect with his receivers. The Bruins have scored 32 unanswered points since retaking the lead in the second quarter.

Cal’s best chance to put points up in the second half was thwarted by the Bruins’ pass rush.

Nikko Remigio, who’s been a nuisance for the Bruins on special teams tonight, returned a kickoff 65 yards to the UCLA 33. But consecutive sacks on third and fourth down by UCLA’s Bo Calvert and Mitchell Agude on Chase Garbers frustrated the Golden Bears.


Kazmeir Allen and Zach Charbonnet continue to dominate vs. Cal

UCLA 35, Cal 14 — 13:10 fourth quarter

The Bruins are putting this one away.

One play after Kazmeir Allen busted off a 33-yard run up the gut of the Cal defense, Zach Charbonnet scored his 13th rushing touchdown of the season on a one-yard run to put the game more out of reach for the Golden Bears.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson then connected on a pass to Charbonnet for two points, giving UCLA 25 unanswered points.


UCLA adds a field goal to take a 27-14 lead in the third quarter

UCLA 27, Cal 14 — end of the third quarter

Nicholas Barr-Mira kicked a 46-yard field goal with 2:25 left in the third quarter to give the Bruins 17 answered points and take a two-touchdown lead over Cal.

It took the Bruins 13 plays to only go 52 yards, with Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Zach Charbonnet chipping away at the Golden Bears’ defense with several short-yardage runs. The drive continued to prove UCLA is the superior team tonight, but Cal isn’t making things too easier, either.

Charbonnet has rushed for 104 yards on 20 carries and Thompson-Robinson has completed 15 of 23 passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns.

Cal has struggled to find any traction on offense in the second half. Chase Garbers has been limited to 77 yards on nine-of-17 passing. Christopher Brooks has 61 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries for the Golden Bears.


Dorian Thompson Robinson connects with Greg Dulcich on perfect TD pass

UCLA 24, Cal 14 — 11:19 third quarter

UCLA tight end Greg Dulcich made an over-the-shoulder, 29-yard touchdown catch on a perfect pass from quarterback Dorian Thompson Robinson to extend the Bruins’ lead.

A 20-yard run by Zach Charbonnet and a pass interference penalty by Cal cornerback Lu-Magia Hearns III helped spur the three-play, 71-yard scoring drive.


Kazmeir Allen finds some redemption with gutsy touchdown run

UCLA 17, Cal 14 — halftime

Kazmeir Allen scored on a speedy, eight-yard touchdown run, beating two Cal defenders on the edge to hit the pylon and give UCLA the lead just before halftime.

Allen’s run capped off a strong drive for the Bruins that tallied 64 yards on 13 plays. Zach Charbonnet provided the bulk of the yardage, stringing together several short-yardage runs to keep the chains moving.

The Bruins ensured they’d keep the lead at the start of the second half when defensive back Quentin Lake picked off a pass from Cal quarterback Chase Garbers. It was Garbers’ second interception of the game.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson tried to extend the Bruins’ lead on the final play of the first half with a 50-yard rocket to the end zone toward Keontez Lewis that fell incomplete.

Thompson-Robinson completed 11 of 15 passes for 63 yards and a touchdown. Charbonnet had 62 yards on 15 carries. Garbers completed six of 11 passes for 69 yards. He also scored a touchdown.


UCLA blunder on kickoff allows Cal to take 14-10 lead

Cal 14, UCLA 10 — 7:00 second quarter

It’s never too late in the season to make a monumental mistake on a kickoff.

Coming off Cal’s first touchdown, UCLA returner Kazmeir Allen let a kickoff slip right through his arms, allowing California’s Cameron Goode to recover the ball and give Cal excellent field position at the UCLA 14-yard line.

A handful of plays later, Cal quarterback Chase Garbers scored on a one-yard touchdown run to give the Golden Bears their first lead of the game.

Last week, Allen was one of the heroes of the Bruins’ win over rival USC, scoring on a 100-yard kickoff return.


Cal strikes back to cut into the Bruins’ lead

UCLA 10, Cal 7 — 8:58 second quarter

The UCLA defense looked pretty good in the first quarter, but they’ve gotten off to a shabby start in the second quarter.

Cal’s Christopher Brooks scored on a 14-yard run to cut into the Bruins lead, capping off an 11-play, 75-yard drive highlighted by a 26-yard pass from Chase Garbers to wide receiver Nikko Remigio.


UCLA takes 10-0 lead over Cal in the second quarter

UCLA 10, Cal 0 — 14:10 second quarter

UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson connected with wide-open receiver Kyle Philips on a four-yard touchdown pass on the second play of the second quarter to extend the Bruins’ lead.

The play came at the end of a nine-play, 40-yard drive that was ignited by a midfield interception by UCLA cornerback Jay Shaw on an errant pass by Cal quarterback Chase Garbers. A 22-yard run by Thompson-Robinson and a nine-yard carry by Zach Charbonnet sped up the Bruins’ march to the end zone.


UCLA jumps out to 3-0 lead on a 41-yard field goal

UCLA 3, Cal 0 — 9:33 first quarter

UCLA is on the scoreboard first after Nicholas Barr-Mira kicked a 41-yard field goal to cap off what appeared to be a promising drive by the Bruins.

Quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson picked up a first down for the Bruins on a 12-yard run, then connected with tight end Greg Dulcich on a 23-yard pass. From there, the Golden Bears managed to contain Thompson-Robinson and force an incomplete pass on third-and-six.

The Bruins’ defense got off to a strong start, limited Cal to three-and-out on its first possession.


Brittain Brown will not play for UCLA tonight vs. Cal

Running back Brittain Brown will not play for UCLA against California tonight because of an undisclosed injury.

The ailment kept him out of the Bruins’ win over USC last week, and there was some hope that he would suit up for tonight’s game even though he was limited to sideline conditioning earlier this week in practice. UCLA coach Chip Kelly told reporters early in the week that Brown was close to playing against USC.

Brown is second in team rushing behind Zach Charbonnet, with 615 yards and seven touchdowns this season.

With this being the final game of the season for the Bruins at the Rose Bowl, the team’s seniors were recognized before kickoff.


Chip Kelly preparing for a ‘sound’ Cal defense

Chip Kelly talked with reporters before practice Wednesday about what makes Cal’s defense so strong, how the Bears have improved on offense and what plans the Bruins have for Saturday’s senior night celebration.


How defensive lineman Otito Ogbonnia became UCLA’s top chef

UCLA defensive lineman Otito Ogbonnia holds up a strawberry cheesecake he made in his apartment.
UCLA defensive lineman Otito Ogbonnia holds up a strawberry cheesecake he made in his apartment. He’s preparing a Thanksgiving feast for his teammates again this year.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

Otito Ogbonnia’s hands, beaten up from years of striking blocking sleds and fighting off offensive linemen, drop delicate pools of fresh strawberry puree into a creamy white batter. Relative to the UCLA defensive lineman’s massive hands, the spoon Ogbonnia is holding looks like something used to feed babies. He drags it through the red puddles, gently swirling them to create a whimsical pattern. Ogbonnia pauses to inspect his work.

When Ogbonnia is not mauling offensive linemen, he’s here, leaning over the kitchen counter of his studio apartment in a UCLA graduate student housing complex or peering into the half-sized oven to check on his latest culinary creation.

The senior nose tackle is UCLA’s top chef.

What started as youthful curiosity is now a deep passion for Ogbonnia. He orders spices from Indonesia to master cinnamon rolls, writes and rewrites his own recipes in his quest for perfection, then delivers his dishes to teammates, coaches and trainers at UCLA to unite the team through a language 300-pound men speak and understand even more fluently than football: food.

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UCLA vs. Cal: College football betting odds, lines, spread and how to watch

UCLA (7-4) hosts California in the Bruins’ regular-season finale at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Rose Bowl.

It’s been a roller-coaster season for UCLA, but it’s been pretty good for backers as the Bruins are also 7-4 against the spread, including covering the last two weeks in their 44-20 rout of Colorado and their 62-33 victory over USC.

Las Vegas oddsmakers have installed UCLA as a seven-point home favorite over Cal (4-6 SU, 6-4 ATS).

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UCLA football team wraps up regular season with an eye toward bowl game

UCLA running back Ethan Fernea carries the ball during a game.
UCLA running back Ethan Fernea will play his final home game Saturday, six years after he walked on with the Bruins.
(Ringo H.W. Chiu / Associated Press)

For the first time since 2017, this isn’t the end for UCLA’s football season.

After FS1 broadcasts Saturday’s regular-season finale against California at 7:30 p.m., the Bruins (7-4, 5-3 Pac-12) are bound for a bowl. It’ll be their first postseason appearance of the Chip Kelly era.

UCLA has bowl eligibility, rivalry bragging rights and the best record of Kelly’s tenure. So what else is there to fight for Saturday night at the Rose Bowl? Plenty, the Bruins say.

“Guys are chomping at the bit again,” senior quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson said. “[We] want to put ourselves in the best position possible to make the best bowl game and move on from there and leave on a high note. So this isn’t just a pushover game.”

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