Coach: Bob Toledo
42-27-0, 6 years
2001 Record: 7-4
at Alabama WON 20-17
at Kansas WON 41-17
at Oregon State WON 38-7
at Stanford LOST 28-38
at Washington State LOST 14-20
at Southern Cal LOST 0-27

2001 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

UCLA is hoping Cory Paus can resurrect memories and numbers from his sophomore campaign. - (AP Photo)
2002 Outlook

Since losing a chance to play for the national title in a 1,300-yard "track meet" versus Miami in December 1997, UCLA has been a very ordinary 24-24 program under Head Coach Bob Toledo. After a scorching 6-0 start to last fall, UCLA's collapse into a 7-4 finish was not uncharacteristic at this program. Big wins over Ohio State, Alabama, Washington, and Oregon State portrayed a national title run that wasn't. Many insiders feel that ultra nice guy Bob Toledo's lack of control and discipline remains this program's essential Achilles heel. The 2002 Bruins lost some major skill position talent and have significant holes elsewhere to fill. The young talent will have to step up early. The strength of this team will likely again be the defense. Quarterback Cory Paus must demonstrate more consistency and personal maturity for this offense to gel, and a new feature tailback must emerge. The defense should be able to keep the team close in most games. But the biggest question is whether the easy going to a fault Toledo can keep this team focused and cohesive during the entire 2002 campaign.

Projected 2002 record: 7-6

QB - 4 DL - 4
RB - 3 LB - 3
WR - 3.5 DB - 3.5
OL - 4.5 ..

Passing: Cory Paus, 101-194-8, 1740 Yards, 8 TD's

Rushing: Akil Harris, 76 att., 375 yds., 3 TD's

Receiving: Craig Bragg, 29 rec., 408 yds., 2 TD's

Scoring: Chris Griffith, 10 FG, 41 PAT, 71 pts.

Punting: Nate Fikse, 53 punts, 44.2 avg.

Kicking: Chris Griffith, 10-13 FG, 41-41 PAT, 71 pts.

Tackles: Brandon Chillar, 42 tot., 23 solo

Sacks: Brandon Chillar, 4.5 sacks

Interceptions: Matt Ware, 5 for 56 yards

Kickoff returns: Craig Bragg, 10 ret., 18.6 avg.

Punt returns: Ricky Manning Jr., 16 ret., 3.3 avg.


OFFENSE: Scott McEwan-QB, Ed Ieremia-Stansbury-FB, Matt Stanley-FB, DeShaun Foster-TB, Brian Poli-Dixon-WR, Bryan Fletcher-TE, Troy Danoff-C
DEFENSE: Kenyon Coleman-DE, Ken Kocher-DT, Anthony Fletcher-DT, Ryan Nece-WLB, Robert Thomas-MLB, Jason Stephens-SS, Marques Anderson-FS

written by Bill Canter

Although the puzzle is not nearly complete, some key pieces are in place for the 2002 season. Personal problems and general decay of team morale and focus kept quarterback Cory Paus from progressing last season after an outstanding sophomore performance. He seems more focused going into his senior year, in part due to a stiff challenge at the helm from redshirt freshman John Sciarra. The young tailback talent is intriguing and a speedy surprise might emerge in the backfield although departed DeShaun Foster and Matt Stanley leave a big gap. The strength of this Bruin offense, the enormous and experienced offensive line, should serve the new runners well and help keep the defense fresh during games. It is hard to remember a UCLA squad that did not have fine receiving depth. This will again probably emerge rapidly behind standout Tab Perry. Tight end Mike Seidman is primed for a big season and could emerge into All-Conference if not higher honors at season's end.

Quarterback Cory Paus showed glaring inconsistency as a junior after a fine sophomore year. He will be challenged by athletic redshirt John Sciarra, son of a former UCLA quarterback great. Life in the backfield after DeShaun Foster will be a crucial question mark going into the 2002 season. Three prep All-American redshirt freshman may challenge for playing time if Akil Harris or Manuel White do not emerge. UCLA will be hard pressed to find a replacement for Brian Poli-Dixon at receiver; depth will be needed to take the double teams off go-to-guy Tab Perry. The offensive line will have to continue its effective play, particularly with question marks created by Foster's departure. All told, whether this offense can keep up with other high scoring conference contenders will depend on Paus as the catalyst and new talent at tailback emerging fast. A great Pac Ten offense is not likely to rise up. Quarterback consistency along with a productive new tailback must develop.


Returning Starters in Bold
QB Cory Paus-Sr John Sciarra-Fr
FB Pat Norton-So Ray Cassaday-So
TB Akil Harris-Jr Manuel White-So
WR Tab Perry-Jr Garrett Lepisto-Jr
WR Craig Bragg-So Ryan Smith-Jr
TE Mike Seidman-Sr Blane Kezirian-Jr
OT Bryce Bohlander-Sr Matt Mosebar-Fr
OG Eyoseph Efseaff-So Paul Mociler-So
C John Ream-So Mike McCloskey-Fr
OG Steven Vieira-So Shane Lehmann-Jr
OT Mike Saffer-Sr Ed Blanton-Fr
K Chris Griffith-Sr ..



written by Bill Canter

UCLA's fine defensive stats for 2001 do not tell the whole story. Last year's Bruin defense played the first half of the season with a rabid, extremely physical intensity. Although several talented starters are gone, the Bruins should again field an aggressive and effective defense. All-American candidate Ricky Manning Jr. and superb sophomore Matt Ware will again anchor a fast and physical secondary. There should be good depth around them. The linebacker corps returns one starter, but he is a good one in Brandon Chillar. Versatile Marcus Reese can play several spots and there is good young depth. The front line is spear headed by All-American candidate Rodney Leisle, run stuffer supreme. The Ball Brothers, Mat and Dave, will continue to contribute a high degree of aggression and effectiveness this season as they did last fall. In short, for the Bruins to contend for a major bowl, this potentially excellent overall unit will have to be just that all season long.

Significant gaps must be closed in the secondary - after all, Ricky Manning Jr. can only play one position at a time. The linebackers lost All-American Robert Thomas as well as the superb Ryan Nece. These are big shoes to fill. Smart young talent must emerge quickly at linebacker in the Bruins aggressive, speed-oriented system. The front line will also have some new faces that must produce consistently as opposing blocking schemes focus on neutralizing Leisle.


Returning Starters in Bold
DE Mat Ball-Jr Asi Faoa-Jr
DT Steve Morgan-Sr Ryan Boschetti-Jr
DT Rodney Leisle-Jr Sean Phillips-Sr
DE Dave Ball-Jr Rusty Williams-Sr
SLB Brandon Chillar-Jr Tim Warfield-So
MLB Marcus Reese-Sr Dennis Link-Jr
WLB Audie Attar-Sr Spencer Havner-Fr
CB Ricky Manning-Sr Marcus Cassel-Fr
CB Joe Hunter-Sr Matthew Clark-So
SS Ben Emanuel II-So Jibril Raymo-So
FS Matt Ware-So Chad Rogers-So
P Nate Fikse-Sr Chris Kluwe-So
All-American candidate Ricky Manning Jr. will again anchor a fast and physical secondary. - (AP Photo/Roy Dabner)