UCLA’s offense had garnered their fair share of criticism through the first two weeks of the season after allowing five sacks to Virginia, and only escaping their match up with Memphis by seven points.
Then on Saturday against Texas, their Heisman hopeful quarterback Bret Hundley goes down midway through the first quarter and backup quarterback Jerry Neuheisel is thrust into the spotlight for the 12th ranked Bruins.
Offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone didn’t even blink, largely because of two reasons. First off, Jerry had been a part of Mazzone’s system for as long as Hundley had, and secondly, he’s the son of a former (rather well known) college coach.
“I called the same flippin’ four plays the whole second half, so its not like it was hard on my part,” Mazzone told the media afterwards.
It certainly worked. Neuheisel ended up going 23/30 for 178 yards with two touchdowns, including the go ahead touchdown.
“Jerry has been in the system just as long as Brett. He’s been there and had a really good camp. You think, ‘Well okay, I am going to cut the game plan down a little bit’. But, I mean, unbelievable. Jerry went out and handled the situation better than anyone could. He really did an awesome job. I’m really proud of the way he played.”