- 2007 Las Vegas Bowl
Name=2007 Las Vegas Bowl
December 22, 2007
Visitor School=Brigham Young University
Visitor Name Short=BYU
Home School=University of California at Los Angeles
Home Name Short=UCLA
Sam Boyd Stadium
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Odds=BYU by 6 cite web |url=http://collegefootball.rivals.com/content.asp?SID=1144&CID=753330 |title=Las Vegas Bowl: BYU vs. UCLA |author=Megargee, Steve |accessdate=2007-12-26 |date=2007-12-19 |work=Rivals.com]
Brad Nessler, Bob Griese, Paul Maguirecite web |url=http://collegefootball.rivals.com/content.asp?SID=1144&CID=753330 |title=Las Vegas Bowl: BYU vs. UCLA |author=Megargee, Steve |accessdate=2007-12-26 |date=2007-12-19 |work=Rivals.com]
The 2007 Las Vegas Bowl was an NCAA-sanctioned
Division Ipost-season college football bowl gamebetween the UCLA Bruins and the Brigham Young University Cougars. The Las Vegas Bowlgets its first choice of bowl-eligible teams from the Mountain West Conference(MWC) and the fourth/fifth choice (alternating every year) of bowl-eligible teams from the Pacific-10 Conference(Pac-10). This bowl game was played on December 22, 2007at 5 p.m. PST at 40,000-seat Sam Boyd Stadiumin Las Vegas, Nevada, USA where this bowl game has been played since 1992. It was broadcast on ESPNand ESPNHD. Since 2001, the game has featured a matchup of teams from the MWC and Pac-10.
This was the second meeting in the 2007 College football season between the
2007 UCLA Bruins football teamand the 2007 BYU Cougars football team. In the first meeting on September 8, 2007 at the Rose Bowl Stadium, the Bruins avoided an upset in a tough game by beating the Cougars, 27-17. UCLA had control of the game in the first half, but BYU made it close in the third quarter. UCLA's pass defense was shaky, giving up 391 yards, and their own passing attack inconsistent, as Ben Olson, a quarterback who transferred from BYU to UCLA, completed only 13 of 28 passes for 126 yards. [ [http://www.byucougars.com/Filing.jsp?ID=9597 www.byucougars.com - BYU UCLA game recap] ]
On December 3, 2007, following the final regular season game against USC, Los Angeles papers and the Associated Press reported that UCLA Coach
Karl Dorrellwas fired during a meeting with athletic director Dan Guerrero. [Brian Dohn. [http://www.dailynews.com/sports/ci_7624423 UCLA fires coach Dorrell.] Los Angeles Daily News. 12/03/2007 11:18:47 AM PST. Quote: "During his tenure, UCLA's off-the-field image, which took a beating under coach Bob Toledo, was cleaned up. But on the field too many inconsistent performances did in Dorrell, who was 1-4 against USC, including Saturday's 24-7 loss at the Coliseum."] Dorrell was offered the choice, but decided not to coach in the Las Vegas Bowl. Defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker served as interim coach for the game. [Associated Press. Fired Dorrell won't coach UCLA in Las Vegas Bowl. December 4, 2007. Quote: "Ousted UCLA football coach Karl Dorrell has decided not to coach the Bruins when they play BYU in the Las Vegas Bowl."]
The 2007 Las Vegas Bowl kicked off at
Sam Boyd Stadiumin Las Vegas, Nevadaat 8:12 p.m. EST. UCLA won the coin toss and elected to kick off to BYU to begin the game.
With less than a minute to go in the first half the Cougars had opened up 17-6 lead. Instead of simply downing the ball, the Cougars ran a running play up the middle and RB
Harvey Ungafumbled. The Bruins responded by punching the ball in the end zone on the final play of the half. In the second half with the Cougars leading 17-13, the defenses took over. Second-half scoring was limited to a 50-yard field goalby the Bruins' Kai Forbath in the fourth quarter. Forbath then attempted a 28-yarder at the end of the game, but it was blocked by Eathyn Manumaleuna to preserve the Cougars' victory.
Walker's defensive schemes had kept the Bruins, who were without their two top
quarterbacks, in the game. The Bruins size and strength advantage allowed them to dominate the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. Ball control was also key: Chris Markey rushed for 117 yards, the most by any BYU opponent in the 2007 season. [ [http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/recap?gameId=273560252 ESPN - Manumaleuna blocks UCLA's last-ditch FG to save No. 17 BYU's bowl win - NCAA College Football Recap ] ]
*The Cougars avenged a 27-17 loss to UCLA in a game played on
September 8at the Bruins' home field, the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California.
*UCLA left this bowl game without naming a permanent
head coachfor the 2008 season; Karl Dorrellhad been fired on December 4. Rumored candidates as of December 24included Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Rick Neuheisel, Temple head coach Al Golden, and Walker. Oregon head coach Mike Bellottiand Tennessee Titansoffensive coordinator Norm Chowhad withdrawn their names from consideration. [Foster, Chris - [http://articles.latimes.com/2007/dec/21/sports/sp-uclarep21 Chow no longer interested in head coach job] . Los Angeles Times, December 21, 2007]
*The Las Vegas Bowl was an advance sellout for the fifth year in a row.
*The Cougars ended the season with a 10 game winning streak, which after Hawaii's lose to Georgia in the Sugar Bowl became the longest winning streak in the country.
*UCLA later selected a former teammate of Dorrell,
Rick Neuheisel, as his successor.Chris Foster, [http://articles.latimes.com/2007/dec/30/sports/sp-neuheisel30 Neuheisel goes back to school] , "Los Angeles Times", December 30, 2008, Accessed July 26, 2008.] DeWayne Walker was retained as the defensive coordinator.
*The UCLA Bruins under Neuheisel and BYU Cougars would meet again in the 2008 regular season at BYU, where the Cougars would defeat the Bruins 59-0. This was the worst loss the Bruins endured since a 76-0 defeat in the very first
UCLA-USC rivalryfootball game. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/14/sports/ncaafootball/14game.html No. 18 B.Y.U. 59, U.C.L.A. 0 Hall’s 7 Touchdown Passes Lead B.Y.U.’s Rout] , Associated Press, New York Times, September 13, 2008]
*UCLA Bruins football media guide 2008
* [http://www.lvbowl.com/ Official Las Vegas Bowl website]
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