The fourth year of the Chip Kelly era at UCLA finally yielded some positive returns. The Bruins went 8-4 in 2021, their best record since 2015. They reached 13th in the Associated Press Top 25 poll and finished third in the PAC-12 South. While UCLA’s bowl game was ultimately canceled, the 2021 season represented a crucial building block. Below is the UCLA football 2022 roster.
Entering 2022, the Bruins get back starting quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson and tailback Zach Charbonnet. However, those two will have to overcome the departures of their top three pass catchers, three starters on the offensive line and nine defensive starters.
Do the Bruins have the roster to build off of last season’s campaign? Here’s a depth chart breakdown.
UCLA 2022 offense
Dorian Thompson-Robinson, Ethan Garbers, Chase Griffin
DTR returns for his final collegiate season after showing significant growth in 2021. The dual-threat QB completed 62% of his throws for 2,409 yards, 21 touchdowns and only six interceptions while adding 754 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground. Garbers is a sophomore who completed 31-of-51 passes and threw two touchdowns in limited action last season.
Zach Charbonnet, Keegan Jones, Deshun Murrell, Brian Kowall
Charbonnet made an immediate impact after transferring in from Michigan, rushing for 1,169 yards and 13 scores in his debut season with the Bruins. While Charbonnet is a likely NFL talent, the Bruins don’t have much depth behind him. Jones, a sophomore, rushed just 26 times last year, while Kowall got five carries. Should Charbonnet go down, this unit could be in major trouble.
Kazmeir Allen, Kam Brown, Jake Bobo, Josiah Norwood, Titus Mokiao-Atimalala
Last year’s leading receiver Kyle Phillips has departed, as has second-leading wideout Chase Cota. The Bruins are hopeful Allen and Brown, who combined for 34 catches last season, can step up. UCLA also added Duke transfer Bobo and UCF transfer Mokiao-Atimalala. Bobo caught 74 passes for the Blue Devils a year ago and could emerge as the team’s top target.
Michael Ezeike, Mike Martinez, Hudson Habermehl, David Priebe, Grant Norberg
Last year, Greg Dulcich hauled in 42 passes for 725 yards for the Bruins. But with Dulcich now in the NFL, Ezeike will have to step up. The senior caught just three balls a season ago.
Duke Clemens, Jon Gaines, Atonio Mafi, Siale Taupaki, Raiqwon O’Neal, Sam Marrazzo, Benjamin Roy, Noah Pulealii, Tyler Manoa, Garrett DiGiorgio
UCLA’s offensive line loses three starters from last season as well as the team’s O-line coach. They’ll have to replace both tackles and their entire left side of the line. However, this unit still brings back 84 career combined starts and will benefit from getting Marrazzo back after he suffered a season-ending injury last year.
UCLA 2022 defense
Gary Smith, Jay Toia, Jacob Sykes, Quintin Somerville, Martin Andrus, Sitiveni Havili-Kaufusi, Dovid Magna
UCLA’s unique scheme required just two down linemen on the field last season. However, the defensive line could be one of the defense’s thinnest units. They lose both starters Otito Ogbonnia, a fifth-round draft choice, and Datona Jackson. The hope is that Smith, a Duke transfer, and Sykes, a Harvard transfer who was 1st-team All-Ivy League last season, can bolster this unit.
Gabriel Murphy, Bo Calvert, Darius Muasau, Brandon Kaho, Grayson Murphy, Carl Jones, Kain Medrano, JonJon Vaughns
The Bruins will lose starting linebackers Caleb Johnson, Jordan Genmark Heath and Mitchell Agude, three of the team’s most productive defenders. However, they bring in both Gabriel and Grayson Murphy from North Texas as well as Muasau, Hawaii’s leading tackler from a season ago. Calvert could take over as the unit’s leader, and Alabama transfer Kaho could take a step forward in 2022. A lot needs to happen for this unit to overcome their losses.
John Humphrey, Devin Kirkwood, Stephan Blaylock, Mo Osling, Azizi Hearn, Jaylin Davies, Isaiah Newcombe, William Nimmo, Kenny Churchwell
UCLA loses three starting defensive backs from last year’s team, with Blaylock being one of the team’s few returning starters. Davies arrives from Oregon to compete for a starting job, but this unit is likely to take a step backward in 2022.
K/P Nick-Barr Mira, K RJ Lopez, P Chase Berry
The sophomore Barr-Mira could be UCLA’s do-it-all specialist after the departure of punter Luke Akers. The only other true punter on the roster is Berry, who was a preferred walk-on. From a kicking perspective, Barr-Mira drilled 14-of-21 field goals and went 52-for-54 on PATs. UCLA could struggle to flip field position if the offense is forced off the field.