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UCLA has the pieces for a Pac-12 title run. Can Josh Rosen make that happen?

UCLA has the pieces for a Pac-12 title run. Can Josh Rosen make that happen?
Published On: Tue, Jul 05
Oct 11, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; DUPLICATE***UCLA Bruins running back Paul Perkins (24) is smothered by Oregon Ducks linebacker Rodney Hardrick (48) and linebacker Tony Washington (91) during the second half at the Rose Bowl. Oregon went on to a 42-30 win. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Last year was supposed to be the year of the UCLA breakthrough, at least per the numbers. Jim Mora's Bruins were projected seventh in S&P+, and on paper it was justifiable.

An offense that had improved for four straight years and was eighth in Off. S&P+ in 2014 was supposed to be built sturdily enough to take on a new quarterback.

The defense had ranked in the Def. S&P+ top 25 for two straight years and returned most of the biggest stars: linebackers Myles Jack and Deon Hollins (combined: 18 tackles for loss in 2014), linemen Kenny Clark and Eddie Vanderdoes (combined: 11 TFLs, impressive for a pair of linemen in a 3-4), and defensive backs Fabian Moreau and Ishmael Adams (combined: four TFLs, 15 passes defensed).

A top-10 projection felt too aggressive to me, considering Mora was handing the reins to a freshman, but there's not an "Are they starting a true freshman?" tweak in the formulas.

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Name Pos
Conor McDermott OL
Ishmael Adams WR
Alex Rassool TE
Dylan Luther DB
Randall Goforth DB
Fabian Moreau DB
Charles Dawson DB
Marcus Rios DB
Nate Iese TE
Jake Jones TE
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