Here's a look at today's game between the UCLA Bruins and Washington State Cougars from the WSU point of view.
The SB Nation blog Coug Center notes that better play-calling has helped quarterback Jeff Tuel:
Simply put, he was awesome on first down -- and that's due both to his performance and to the play calling. We had advocated for quick, short passes designed to make use of the athleticism and quickness at wideout (while simultaneously covering for a lacking ground game and subpar pass protection), and that's exactly what we got. No, the 6.4 yards per attempt isn't eye-popping, but when you call passes on 15 first downs and average 6.4 yards -- more than double what you were averaging on first down runs in the first three games -- that's a huge improvement.
One of Tuel's top targets, wide receiver Jared Karstetter, has improved this season after being hurt in the offseason, writes Vince Grippi of the Seattle Times:
But those skills have started to really emerge this year, despite an offseason in which he was unable to lift weights and his workouts were limited due to injury. His 18 receptions are second on the team to Marquess Wilson's 20, but his four touchdowns are double Wilson's total and 40 percent of the Cougars'.
In Karstetter and Wilson, the Cougars have some weapons on the outside. They, like the Bruins, run the pistol offense, albeit a different version. The problem for the Cougars will be, can they stop UCLA:
"(The pistol) stresses discipline the most, just like an option outfit," said linebackers coach Travis Niekamp, whose group struggled last week in a 50-16 defeat against USC. "There's a lot of motions, whether it be a fly motion, the tight end falling back across the formation, those type of things.
Kickoff is today at 12:37 p.m.
For more UCLA news and information, be sure to visit Bruins Nation.