Kyle Philips

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Jalen Hurts doing Jalen Hurts things as No. 5 Oklahoma thumping UCLA at halftime


PASADENA, Calif. — Jalen Hurts sure is making the most of his trip to the Rose Bowl and looks well on his way to getting what predecessor once removed Baker Mayfield failed to get: a win.

No. 5 Oklahoma ran up and down the field on offense to jump out to a 34-7 lead at halftime over UCLA on a hot Saturday evening at the Rose Bowl.

The predictable result — no surprise given the state of the two teams coming into the contest — doubled as a highlight factory for the Sooners’ budding Heisman Trophy candidate. Hurts was a threat with his arm (206 yards, 2 touchdowns) and legs (141 yards, 1 score), dazzling with several incredible escapes on the rare chance he felt pressure. He had an impressive 99 yards on the ground during the team’s first drive of the game alone, breaking ankles on a scramble to later set up an end zone dash off a draw.

Opposite number Dorian Thompson-Robinson was far from as prolific but did look much improved after two lackluster weeks behind center for the Bruins. He wound up throwing for 79 yards (one interception), including a nifty strike between defenders to Kyle Philips for a touchdown. The running game for Chip Kelly wasn’t mustering up much however, which would be concerning if not for the state of UCLA’s defense allowing their opponents to march down the field with regularity.

Needless to say, this game is what we all thought it would be: lopsided in favor of the team used to playing in College Football Playoff games at the historic venue in Los Angeles and not the one that calls the place home.