By Gary Montgomery
Pasadena - After living in southern California for most of twenty years, I had come to believe that the happiest place on earth was Disneyland, until Saturday evening.
The UCLA locker room is the unofficial happiest place on earth. After nearly five years of frustration, the UCLA football team passed a self-imposed litmus test.
The Bruins beat a very good nation ranked (#10) Cal in dramatic fashion and vaulted themselves into the midst of the nationally ranked.
It doesnt get much bigger than this. We beat a ranked team that hasnt happened around here in a long time, said a smiling Drew Olsen. UCLAs victory in many ways solidified their efforts to this point in the season. Many had questioned the strength of their opponents and whether they could beat Cal.
It wasnt the prettiest win...it was a gut check. We know we are young...we know that we are a little undersized, but we just keep battling...they have a lot of heart, said an emotional Karl Dorrel.
It was junior running back Maurice Drews fourth touchdown a 28-yard reception and scamper down the sideline with 1:35 remaining that put the game away. Drew entered the game as the number 3 punt returner in the nation. Drew scored 5 touchdowns including another 81-yard kick return to shatter the Pac-10 record. When Cal punter David Lonie failed to kick away from Drew. If they kick it to me, Im going to run it back, said Drew. Drew amassed 299 offensive yards.
Karl Dorrell provided one the biggest plays of the game when faced with a fourth and 2 situation, trailing by 12 midway of the fourth, Dorrell sent in his punting team and pulled off a fake punt for a 38-yard gain. That led to a touchdown and kept UCLA in the game.
Dorrells Bruins quieted a lot of doubters with its performance. Not only did the Bruins remain among college footballs unbeaten, but also played like a Pac-10 title contender and improved their national ranking to #10 in the national polls. UCLA must now take their magical act on the road to Washington State on Saturday.
gmontgomery can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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