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UCLA football finishes year in Cactus Bowl with Chip Kelly era looming

By in Press Enterprise on December 25, 2017

By Thuc Nhi Nguyen

PHOENIX — Jedd Fisch met with Chip Kelly one day after Kelly was hired to take over the program Fisch had been piloting for a week. The message was clear.

“You take this team until the bowl game is over,” the new UCLA head coach told the man wearing the program’s interim visor.

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Five weeks later, Fisch’s job is almost done. He got the Bruins to a bowl game and they’ll finish their season Tuesday against Kansas State in the Cactus Bowl at 6 p.m. in Phoenix.

Then he will pass the baton to Kelly, who is expected to usher in a new chapter for a program that’s thirsting for a winner again.

Tuesday will be the last stand for the 2017 Bruins. Despite an uncertain future, this year’s team has vowed to stay focused on its final task.

“We’ll worry about next year when that time comes,” safety Adarius Pickett said. “But as of right now, we’ve got to try to win this championship.”

When UCLA has the ball

The Bruins hoped they would be vying for a different championship this season, especially with the way the year started.

Quarterback Josh Rosen led them to the biggest comeback in school history in the season opener that seems like a lifetime ago now, especially with Rosen’s status in doubt for Tuesday’s bowl game. UCLA scored 35 unanswered points to close the game. The game-winning touchdown came on a fake spike. Under the Rose Bowl lights, Fisch and […]    

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