UCLA mourns deathThere is not another team in the country facing a tougher challenge this week than the UCLA Bruins as they prepare to play at Nebraska – and the challenge has little to do with their opponents. The Bruins are trying to focus on the task at hand while also mourning the tragic death Sunday of beloved walk-on receiver Nick Pasquale, who was killed after being struck by a car while walking in San Clemente, Calif. Pasquale, a redshirt freshman, had just played in his first game as a Bruin. UCLA coach Jim Mora said one of his most important priorities is letting his players know that he’s there if they need someone to talk to. “First and foremost, it’s most important that you’re available to them,” Mora said. “Football pales in comparison to what they’re going through right now, but it’s also an outlet for their emotion and their grief. I make myself available to them 100 percent of the day, and they know that.”
Kelly’s debut successChip Kelly will have to sustain his successful offensive style for longer than one game to be considered a conqueror of NFL defenses. But after the former Oregon coach led the Philadelphia Eagles to a 33-27 victory over Washington in his NFL debut, the reviews of his fast-paced, spread offense were almost unanimously positive. Current Oregon coach Mark Helfrich, one of Kelly’s former assistants, said he doesn’t think the proliferation of Kelly’s offensive success in the NFL will have much of an impact on Oregon one way or the other. The benefits have already been reaped. “We think there’s a lot of validation in everything we do,” Helfrich said. “You look at past several (NFL) draft classes … offensive linemen, receivers, quarterbacks. There’s a ton of guys coming from our type of offense.”
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