Monday, September 14, 2009
Big road wins early in the season
UCLA's 19-15 win over Tennessee was ugly. But going into Knoxville and knocking off a SEC team, bent on revenge, is a very big deal for the young and inexperienced Bruin squad. Stopping the Vols on 4th down inside the 3 yard line to preserve the win may be the most important moment in Rick Neuheisel's UCLA career and is certainly the springboard for the rest of the Bruin season. Unfortunately, Kevin Prince broke his jaw trying to scramble and complete a pass to seal the win on 3rd down of the series after. Its a play that was bungled from the beginning. The Bruins with a 6 point lead should have ran a QB sneak to run the clock down, then taken a safety on 4th down. Now Prince will be out 3-4 weeks with his mouth wired shut while true freshmen, Richard Brehaut or last season's goat, Kevin Craft, takes the reigns. Still, a gutsy out-of-conference win bodes well for the future of UCLA football.
The 49ers traveled to defending the NFC champion Arizona Cardinals and came out of that ugly game 20-16 with a victory as well. While not posting great offensive numbers, including an anemic running game, the 49ers still were able to drive down late in the 4th quarter and score the go ahead score on Shaun Hill's TD pass to Frank Gore. Coach Singletary seems to have molded the 49ers into his image - a hard-hitting, defensive minded squad. There will likely be very few pretty wins this season but the 49ers have fired a season opening salvo to the rest of the NFC West announcing their intentions.
Crabtree is the only draft pick that has not signed a contract yet. Feeling like he deserves a bigger contract than what his 10th spot merits him, Crabtree is threatening to hold out until the 2010 draft. Personally, I am hoping that the 49ers will not give into his demands. If he thinks he will be drafted higher than the 10th overall pick after a year of inactivity plus the emergence of his prima donna attitude, then let him hold out. If he hopes to be a star in this league, that fool would have been better off coming into training camp immediately and camping out on Jerry Rice's driveway on the weekends.