UCLA comes to town; Rodgers to play?

NEUHEISEL ARRIVED AT UCLA WITH THIS SPLASH IN 2008

UCLA COMES TO town this week and they'll be bringing with them a myriad of problems. How bad is it in Westwood? Consider that Oregon State, who lost to an FCS team in their opener, and got shut out on the road at Wisconsin, are 3-point favorites.

Oh thank God for UCLA, Beaver fans have to be thinking.

Until they wonder if because UCLA has nothing to lose, that's something that can make them dangerous.

Then again, it sure hasn't helped the Bruins through the first three games.

Consider that the vultures have been circling Rick Neuheisel since before the season began. It's only gotten worse with UCLA's 1-2 start.

"I can't be the only one who cares!" Neuhiesel yelled during a practice-field tirade heading into San Jose State. The Bruins won but based on how UCLA played, yes coach, you might well be the only one.

After the 49-20 loss to Texas on Saturday, one Denver sportswriter described the UCLA defense as a "sieve".

Closer to home, an L.A. Times columnist opined, "It's not the end, but it sure feels like it. The coach can still save his job, but the conditions appear unlikely and the rescue would be miraculous."

Even Neuheisel himself used words like "ridiculous" and "atrocious" in describing some of his team's play from Saturday.

Oregon State WILL see a different starting quarterback from the Bruins, as Neuheisel will sit down Kevin Prince, (who in his defense, does not yet appear healthy) in favor of Richard Brehaut.

Prince had a high completion percentage against Texas, connecting on six of seven passes. The only problem -- three of them were to Texas players.

WITH THE NEWS that James Rodgers is likely to play against UCLA, even if it ends up only being a dozen or so plays, that is likely to provide a powerful lift this week in practice at Oregon State.

Star h-back Joe Halahuni should be back as well. Double bonus.

And the film of UCLA this week should be giving Oregon State players all the desire they need to go out and win a football game. Heck, OSU could even go out there and, dare we say, win comfortably? It's not that crazy a notion given the free-fall UCLA finds themselves in, is it?

Welcome UCLA. Welcome.

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