UCLA football season must be here.
Quarterback Brett Hundley on Wednesday will have the torn meniscus in his knee surgically repaired after being injured while playing in a pickup basketball game last month. Meanwhile, cornerback Anthony Jefferson is mulling his options for treatment on a disk problem in his back.
This has become business as usual for the Bruins, who were overwhelmed by injuries during a 4-8 season in 2010.
Hundley, the centerpiece of the Bruins' last recruiting class, will miss three to four weeks. Jefferson, a sophomore who plays a position at which the Bruins have little depth, will decide between rest and surgery.
Coach Rick Neuheisel, appearing at Pac-12 football media day in Los Angeles, said Hundley would probably miss the first couple of weeks of summer training camp, which opens Aug. 8.
"He'll have to do a lot of walk-through stuff," Neuheisel said, "to the extent that he can walk."
Hundley was facing an uphill fight to win the quarterback job as a freshman. But he was expected to play in certain situations, much as Terrelle Pryor did at first as a freshman at Ohio State.
That plan is still in place. "He did get a lot of reps in spring, so we know what he is capable of doing," Neuheisel said. "How quickly he heals is the more significant question."
But it's not the only question UCLA faces at quarterback.
Kevin Prince, who won the starting job the last two years, is "100%," Neuheisel said, following last fall's knee surgery.
But Prince has had a series of injuries in three seasons and Neuheisel said of him, "The burden he carries now is, 'Can he stay healthy?' I'm not going to assume bad things are going to happen, but I have to be ready in the event we go down this road at some point."
There is also Richard Brehaut, who started seven games in place of Prince last season. His performance received mixed reviews.
"He has to know that the quarterback at UCLA has to know everything," Neuheisel said of Brehaut. "You can't be a guy knowing 80%.… I think there is more in the tank and it's my job to extract that."
Neuheisel, who is working more closely with the quarterbacks now that Norm Chow is gone, said the position "has to get better. It has been woeful."
On the hot seat
Neuheisel was peppered with questions about his future at UCLA. He has a 15-22 record with the Bruins, and this is being portrayed as a win-or-go-home season.
"When the outside talk is, 'Rick, you're fired,' that's the outside talk that would concern me," Neuheisel said. "I look at it as my challenge and I'm going to get it done come hell or high water."
The chore now, Neuheisel said, is "to get over the hump of this mediocrity. I have players ready to do that."
Neuheisel, who is under contract through the 2012 season, would not quantify success in a certain number of victories. However, he added, "To deny that the number of wins is important is putting your head in the sand. Getting to postseason is huge. That's where the perception of the program changes."
Six victories would make the Bruins bowl-eligible.