Former Corona Star Jordan James is Leading the Bruins in rushing with 424 yards
By Gary Montgomery
The UCLA Bruins are now 3-0 after Saturday’s 59-13 rout of the New Mexico State Aggies at the Rose Bowl. This is the Bruins second consecutive 3-0 start.
Last season, UCLA ran off opening season victories over Rice, Nebraska and Houston before suffering a 27-20 home loss to Oregon State. Although the Bruins eventually recovered and won the Pac-12 South Division, the team never regained its early season swagger and lost both the Pac-12 title game and its Bowl game badly.
Since leaving training in San Bernardino, the Bruins have vowed that this season would be different. So far, so good.
Redshirt sophomore quarterback Brett Hundley has thrown for 962-yards this season and 8 touchdowns. Hundley’s performance has placed him on the Heisman watch list and the talking heads are starting to take notice.
Behind Hundley, the Bruin’s offense rolled up 692-yards on the Aggies Saturday evening crushing their season average of 575-yards per game and surpassing the previous school record of 679-yards set in 1994.
Hundley has already passed the 5000-yard mark and is currently eight on UCLA’s all-list for most passing yards. Hundley will likely surpass Troy Aiken at 5,294-yards next week against Utah.
While Hundley and the Bruins’ aerial attack is getting all of the attention, the ground game led by former Corona High speedster Jordan James is quietly setting some records of its own.
Jordan James has racked up 3 straight 100-yard games including 164 on Saturday night to give him a total of 424-yards for the season. James also turned in his first two touchdown game of his career. James, a 5’9” 194 pound soft spoken and amazingly unselfish young man gives all of the credit to his offensive line and the coaches. “The offensive line is blocking great. I see a hole and I just run through it,” said James.
James appeared in 14 games in both the 2011 and 2012 seasons playing behind Jonathan Franklin, now with the Green Bay Packers. With the speedster James taking over the tailback position this season has given the Bruins running game a complete new dimension and widened their attack. “The biggest change for me this season is that I am relaxed. As the starter I can just get comfortable and let the game come to me,” said James.
At this point in the season Jordan is quietly on a 1000-yard pace. If the UCLA offense can continue on its current pace the young man from Corona could have a very special season, one that could bolster him into Heisman territory next year.
As a Watkins Award finalist who represents some of the smartest athletes in the country Jordan knows that teams will begin to focus on stopping the Bruins running attack and Jordan says, “I don’t think they can.” UCLA will play Utah on Saturday in Salt Lake City.
Gary Montgomery can be reached at email@example.com