The UCLA Bruins beat the Rice Owls 49-24 in the first game of the Jim L. Mora era. UCLA got off to a scorching start against Rice and gave some of it back due to defensive troubles and various special teams gaffes, but eventually the Bruins settled it down and imposed their will with a few fourth quarter touchdowns to win the first game of the season.
Johnathan Franklin had a spectacular start to his season, rushing for three touchdowns of 74, 78 and 22 yards. Franklin finished with 214 rushing yards on only 15 carries. Brett Hundley was excellent in his first start too, rushing for a 72 yard touchdown, completing 75% of his passes and throwing two touchdowns and an interception. But the most interesting stat was Rice linebacker Cameron Nwosu blocking three extra points in one half, a new college football record.
UCLA struggled on defense to stop the Rice offense for much of the first half after taking an early 19-0 lead thanks to Hundley and Franklin's long rushes, giving up 24 points and cutting the lead back to one score. But Damien Holmes recovered a fumble and returned it for a 44 yard touchdown just before halftime to put UCLA up by 11, and 4th quarter touchdowns by Hundley through the air and Franklin on the ground sealed the victory.
UCLA managed to cover the 15.5-point spread pretty easily. Next up for UCLA will be a home game in the Rose Bowl again Nebraska. Rice heads on the road to face Kansas.