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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Column: UCLA’s Myles Jack has terrorized Arizona football

Tyler Baker

UCLA linebacker Myles Jack (30) looks in after a completed play at Arizona Stadium on Nov. 9, 2013. The Wildcats lost the game 26-31.

Updated Sept. 23, 2015 10:40 a.m.

Star UCLA linebacker Myles Jack suffered a season-ending knee injury in practice Tuesday.

According to the LA Times, Jack tore his meniscus on a non-contact injury towards the end of practice.

“It is a significant knee injury,” UCLA head coach Jim Mora told the paper.

Jack, a junior, earned All-Pac-12 honors both his freshman and sophomore seasons.

Read more about the season-ending knee injury here.

What comes to mind when you hear the name Frank Kaminsky?

7-footer? Sharpshooter? Wisconsin? Elite Eight? How about Wildcat Killer?

The latter could also describe another common Arizona foe. His name is Myles Jack.

“How long has he been there?” Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez asked of Jack at his press conference Monday. “I think I said after his first year he should go ahead and declare [for the draft].”

Jack is a junior linebacker for the No. 9 UCLA Bruins that will visit Tucson on Saturday. For two years now, Jack has been the ultimate thorn in Rodriguez’s side.

As a freshman in 2013, the Bruins visited Arizona in what would be a close 31-26 win for UCLA. Jack, who primarily plays defense, saw his first action of the year on offense as a running back.

He ran the ball six times for 120 yards, including a 66-yard touchdown. Jack also contributed big on defense by recording eight tackles and recovering a fumble.

That was just his first year.

During Jack’s sophomore season in 2014, the Wildcats visited Pasadena, California, and the Rose Bowl to take on the Bruins again. The Bruins again took the victory 17-7, and, although the score seemed close, the fast-paced Arizona offense was kept stagnant by a tough UCLA defense led by Jack.

Now the Wildcats get to see Jack for a third time.

“He’s a great player, and certainly he’s done some good things against us on both sides of the ball,” Rodriguez said. “He’s having another really good year.”

Through three games, Jack continues to be a dominant force for UCLA. He has run the ball twice just this year, but he did score in the Bruins’ opener against Virginia. Jack also had a fourth-quarter interception against BYU that sealed UCLA’s victory.

Jack attended Bellevue High School in Bellevue, Washington. Listed as a four-star recruit by multiple sources, Jack came into this year on the watch list for the preseason Walter Camp Award, which is given to college football’s most outstanding player. This list also includes Arizona linebacker Scooby Wright III.

If Jack chooses to declare for the NFL after this season, there’s a good chance he will be a first-round pick and the first linebacker taken in the draft.

So what should Arizona fans expect from Jack this Saturday?

Well, they should expect him to dominate.

Jack does not quite stuff the stat sheet like Scooby, but his impact is there. He’s quick, athletic and smart. He probably will not see any time at running back because his teammate, Paul Perkins, is tearing it up for UCLA.

But Jack’s success in the past could be another weapon for the Bruins. Rodriguez knows all too well what Jack is capable of, and he will need to plan accordingly.

With ESPN’s College GameDay coming to town, the Bruins and Wildcats will each try anything and everything to come away with a victory. This game will make a big splash in the Pac-12 South race, and Jack will be one of the storylines going into this game.

Arizona men’s basketball head coach Sean Miller and his team were unlucky in running into Frank Kaminsky in back-to-back Elite Eights. Rodriguez will get to see his biggest foe for a third time, and in a game this big, expect to see a lot from UCLA’s No. 30.

Follow Kyle Hansen on Twitter.

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