UCLA football will be spending plenty of time at home in 2022

UCLA head coach Chip Kelly gestures during the first half against USC on Nov. 25. (Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

That beloved view of the San Gabriel Mountains is going to be savored a lot by UCLA football fans in 2022.

The Bruins will play their first three games — and five of their first six — at the Rose Bowl next season as part of a home-heavy schedule that was released Thursday.

UCLA will play eight games at the Rose Bowl for the first time in school history, something that didn’t even happen during the five seasons in which the school played in the Rose Bowl game since moving to the granddaddy of college football stadiums before the 1982 season. It’s the most home games the Bruins have played since also playing eight at the Coliseum in 1939, when the crosstown rivalry game was designated as a home game for UCLA.

The schedule could work heavily in the team’s favor, especially early in the season. The Bruins open with nonconference games against Bowling Green on Sept. 3, Alabama State on Sept. 10 and South Alabama on Sept. 17, possibly gifting themselves a 3-0 start. The game against Alabama State — added after Michigan backed out of a game that was supposed to be played at Michigan Stadium — will be UCLA’s first against a Football Championship Subdivision school.

It will be the first time the Bruins won’t have played a Power Five conference opponent since 1992, when the team beat Cal State Fullerton, Brigham Young and San Diego State to start the season. (UCLA’s 2006 and 2007 schedules also technically didn’t include a then-Power Five opponent but featured Notre Dame, a powerhouse independent.)

After getting a brief taste of the road against Colorado on Sept. 24, the Bruins return for home games against Washington on Oct. 1 and defending Pac-12 champion Utah on Oct. 8. Of critical…

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