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November 16, 2011The clock is ticking down on a Bruin football season that many UCLA fans thought held such promise. The Bruins have a chance to get bowl eligible with a win against Colorado this Saturday and as they have ever since the Arizona game, the Bruins are taking it one game at a time. UCLA head coach Rick Neuheisel, as always met with the media after Tuesday's practice.
Neuheisel: "Good start to the week. Lots of enthusiasm. Lots of energy with respect to getting ready to play our last home game and looking forward to hopefully playing a great game. We need to play that way. We are going to play a game that is very excited about being here. Coming in and it is going to be a whale of a football game. We need to make sure that we show up with everything we have."
Neuheisel: "Tony practiced today. I will get more word about how he did later. I din't get any word that anything bad happened. I was focusing more on the offensive side. I will look at the film tonight and let you know."
What exactly were you focusing on offensive side based on what you learned coming away from the Utah game?
Neuheisel: "Well we're bot there yet as a consistent entity. We played two pretty good games and went back to Utah and we didn't play as nearly as well as we needed to gain a victory over a good team and we have to come back and get better. Hopefully we can do that in the friendly confines of the Rose Bowl."
How frustrating is it that you are at this part of the season and are still trying to get it together?
Neuheisel: "Yeah, frustration is a fair word, but there are lots of teams that don't do it every week. That's why this conference is so competitive. People are beaten that the experts didn't think possible because everybody plays hard and we just didn't play as well as we could and it cost us so we have to come back and play inspired again this weekend and see if we can get our sixth win."
What does it mean for you to play against Jon Embree and what does it mean for Taylor Embree?
Neuheisel: "Jon is a close friend of mine. He and I go way back. We spend a lot of good years together and it will be a treat to be opposite of him on the sideline. You never like to compete, head to head, against close friends, but both of us will do just that and has for Taylor, he's from the same bloodline. He's going to compete, too, and it will be a spirited game."
This is senior day and these are players that you have been with for all four of your years here. Can you talk about this class of players and what you have been through with them?
Neuheisel: "I'm thrilled that I get to see my first class off here and those are emotional days. There's a lot of blood, sweat and tears that go into these four and five years as you try to help build a program back to respectability and these guys have worked hard and we have a chance by playing our best game on Saturday to move in that direction. Not only is that emotional from the standpoint of getting to line up in the home uniform at the Rose Bowl, but it is also a chance to really do something in terms of leaving behind something behind that they can be proud of."
Is Anthony Jefferson cleared to play?
Neuheisel: "He has been cleared to play, whether or not, he's ready to play is another question."
Neuheisel: "Mascarenas, I think will get cleared here, this week. I don't know in what capacity this week, but it is nice to have him back."