In another low scoring affair, BYU fell to Josh Rosen and UCLA 14-17. Kalani Sitake's season opener brought thousands of excited fans but ended in disappointment. The defense played well all night for the third straight game but the offense still needs some work to say the least.
In the first drive, Taysom finally completed his first pass of over 20 yards this season when he threw to a wide open Jamaal Williams for 39 yards. They went for it on 4th and 8 just outside of field goal range and couldn't convert. Neither offense was able to get into a rhythm throughout the entire first quarter.
Josh Rosen finally was able to settle down and began to pick apart the BYU defense scoring 10 points before the half. Taysom Hill finished the half with an astonishing -23 rushing yards and BYU was shutout.
One series in particular that sticks out was BYU's inability to come away with any points after Fred Warner got an interception on the UCLA 30 yard line. Not being able to come away with points off a turnover in field goal range is alarming.
The third quarter saw more offensive success with a long drive finished off by some tough running by Jamaal Williams for a touchdown. A missed field goal by UCLA on the ensuing drive gave BYU new life but the offense was unable to capitalize and the game remained 17-7.
After getting UCLA off the field on 3rd down, the offense mounted their best drive of the game with help from Moroni Laulu-Pututau making several catches to extend the drive. Nick Kurtz made an acrobatic catch to make the score 17-14 with less than a minute remaining in the game. The final onside kick had a little too much behind it and sailed harmlessly out of bounds.
It isn't a secret anymore, but the BYU offense is struggling. Holding Josh Rosen and UCLA to 17 points is a major accomplishment, but it was not enough. Butch Pau'u led BYU in tackles with 19, and Fred Warner made 9 tackles and a great interception early in the first half.
Taysom Hill finished with 26-45 with 250 yards, a touchdown and an interception. This stat line is a little misleading as Taysom grabbed 86 yards on the final drive when UCLA was playing a rather conservative defense.
The most telling stat of the game may be the BYU rushing line, 25 attempts for 23 yards as a team. They will absolutely need to improve that phase of the game if they have hopes of beating 2-0 West Virginia in Maryland next week.