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November 26, 2012 | By Gary Klein
Three UCLA football players and two from USC were first-team All-Pac-12 Conference selections, it was announced Monday. USC receiver Marqise Lee was chosen offensive player of the year. Trojans center Khaled Holmes and UCLA offensive lineman Xavier Su'a-Filo, linebacker Anthony Barr and punter Jeff Locke also were first-team selections in voting by coaches. Oregon and Stanford each placed five players on the first team, Oregon State four. Lee, a sophomore, has 112 receptions for 1,680 yards, both conference records.
November 10, 2012 | Sam Farmer
Through the first half of the NFL season, there have been 14 punts blocked. That might not sound like a lot, but consider there were nine in the entire 2011 season, meaning the league is on track for more than three times as many. Sure, it could be a statistical hiccup, although 14 is already more blocked punts than in any full season since 2003. (According to the Elias Sports Bureau, a record 31 punts were blocked in 1977.) Something strange is afoot this season, and it can't just be that the field of 32 punters includes five rookies since only three of the blocks were on first-year players.
September 14, 2012 | By Chris Foster
How important is punting? All you have to do is watch UCLA's Jeff Locke perform his specialty. Sure, Locke has a boomer-type leg. He was 12th nationally last season when averaging 44.3 yards. But it's his soft touch that really impresses. He dropped a kick dead on the five-yard line last week. On the next play, Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez was sacked by Datone Jones for a safety to give UCLA a 29-27 lead. "Any time we get in that area, inside the 50-yard line, he's very capable and more than likely to pin our opponent inside the 10," UCLA Coach Jim Mora said.
August 21, 2012 | By Chris Foster
Jeff Locke's roommates are not entirely fond of the baseball-style cap that the UCLA punter insists on wearing. "Disgusting," is the way Bruins quarterback Kevin Prince describes it. "I refuse to touch it," says long snapper Kevin McDermott. Locke couldn't care less what his buddies think. "All's fair in friendship," he says with a smirk. The cap — a UCLA model, white with a powder blue brim — means a lot to Locke. Somewhere under the grime are dozens of signatures, scribbled by UCLA players as a prank orchestrated by Prince in 2009.
February 4, 2012 | By Sam Farmer
Giants Three players who need to come through Jacquian Williams Linebacker The team's fastest linebacker, it was Williams who forced the decisive fumble in the victory over San Francisco. He's nursing a sprained foot. Aaron Ross Cornerback Considering New England's weapons on the outside, Ross needs to have a good game opposite the more reliable and consistent Corey Webster. David Baas Center Eli Manning took a beating in the overtime victory at San Francisco.
February 2, 2012 | By Joe Bel Bruno
Can't get in on the Facebook IPO? Well, here's your chance to make a little money on the year's hottest public offering without even buying a share. Paddy Power, Europe's largest betting company, just started taking bets on what the share price will be when the social-media giant goes public later this year. Punters (that's gamblers in British slang) have given 10 to 11 odds that the most likely price range will fall between $35 to $44.99 a share.  There are 7 to 2 odds the initial price will be $25 to $34.99, 9/4 odds of between $45 and $54.99, and 7 to 1 odds of between $55 and $64.99.
January 6, 2012 | Bill Dwyre
From New Orleans -- Now here's something to get a kick out of. There is a decent chance that the star of the Bowl Championship Series title game Monday night will be a punter. Actually, not just a punter. An Australian punter. Could this get more bizarre? First, we must understand that Louisiana State versus Alabama is unlikely to be anything like the high-scoring bowl games preceding it. The only way these teams will get to a 70-33 finish is if they play for a week. If the guys in Las Vegas set the over-under at 10, they'd get plenty of action on the under.
November 12, 2011 | Bill Plaschke
The ball was snapped to the USC punter and an old football movie broke out. He tucked the ball high under his right arm. He pumped his legs as if riding a bike. He began running stiff-backed and straight, pumping, pumping through a giant hole in the stunned Washington defense. Only when the punter had covered nearly half of the field did a Husky finally jump in front of him, but the punter kept pumping, flattening his nemesis as they crashed together into 1940. Knute Negrete, All-American.
November 4, 2011 | By Chris Foster
It's pretty simple. A victory over No. 20 Arizona State on Saturday and UCLA is tied for first place in the Pacific 12 Conference's South Division. The Sun Devils can all but wrap up the division -- and a place in the conference championship game -- with a win. Staff writer Chris Foster examines the game's issues and matchups: Take it away Turnovers are the key to winning -- and losing -- football games. Has there ever been a coach who didn't have that go-to line ready?
September 22, 2011 | By Chris Foster
Jeff Locke , best known as UCLA's punter, improved his NFL stock with his two field goals against Texas last Saturday. Locke, subbing for the injured Kip Smith , made kicks of 49 and 51 yards. He is already considered one of the top punters in the nation and handles kickoff chores for the Bruins. "Obviously, he showed he is diverse," Coach Rick Neuheisel said, which should resonate with NFL scouts. "As you're trying to secure roster spots, he would be very valuable, especially on a 45-man roster," Neuheisel added.
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