UCLA looks to build off last season hosting Bowling Green

Thu, Sep 1, 2022
NCAAF News (AP)

UCLA looks to build off last season hosting Bowling Green

Bowling Green (0-0) at UCLA (0-0), Saturday, 2:30 p.m. ET (Pac-12 Network)

Line: UCLA by 24.5, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Series record: First meeting.

WHAT'S AT STAKE?

Chip Kelly begins his fifth year at UCLA with his deepest and most experienced team. The Bruins were 8-4 last season and look to continue their momentum this year with what could be the easiest non-conference schedule for a Power Five school. Bowling Green was 4-8 last year, but one of their victories was against Minnesota of the Big Ten.

KEY MATCHUP

UCLA RB Zach Charbonnet vs. Bowling Green run defense: Charbonnet was third in the Pac-12 last season in rushing yards (1,137) and had a conference-high seven 100-yard games last season. The Bruins are 15-4, including 8-0 last season, when rushing for 200 or more yards. The Falcons were sixth in the Mid-American Conference in rushing defense, allowing 187.8 per game. They were 1-4 last year when giving up at least 200 yards on the ground.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Bowling Green: LB Darren Anders was eighth in the nation in tackles last season, averaging 10.3 per game. The senior is one of three players in the Football Bowl Subdivision to rank in the top 15 in tackles over the last two seasons.

  • UCLA: QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson is back for his fifth season with the Bruins. The senior led the Pac-12 last season in total offense per game (274.4), passing efficiency (153.9) and passing yards per completion (13.7).

    FACTS & FIGURES

    Bowling Green QB Matt McDonald is from Newport Beach, California, and is the son of former Southern California QB Paul McDonald, who led the Trojans to the Rose Bowl game three times. ... This is the second time in the last five seasons that the Falcons will open with a Pac-12 opponent. They lost 58-24 at Oregon in 2018. ... This will be UCLA's 1st game against a team from the Mid-American Conference since 2009, when they beat Temple 30-21 in the Eagle Bank Bowl. The Bruins have never faced a current member of MAC. ... UCLA senior LB LB Darius Muasau, a transfer from Hawaii, was a first-team Mountain West selection the past two seasons.

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