Dear Mr. Guerrero,
Good evening Mr. Guerroro. My name is David Montoya and I am currently a law student at UCLA. It had been my goal since high school to get into UCLA Law, so being here has been nothing but wonderful. I come from a long line of Bruins (both my parents attained their degrees along with my aunt, and two uncles received their law degrees here), so I have been a huge fan of the school since before I can even remember.
Part of this pride comes from the excellent athletic department UCLA has. We are on the brink of 100 NCAA Championships, a fact that I like to boast quite often.
Recently, I have become very dismayed as to what is occurring with our beloved football program. The past four years under Karl Dorrell have been less than stellar. In his four years here, his best year was last year, a 10-2 season that included embarassing losses to Arizona (a team that finished 3-8) and to USC. I understand completely that a 10-2 season is thrilling and successful, but a team that is capable of going 10-2 should also be incapable of losing to a vastly inferior team such as Arizona; therefore, the issue that should have been loud and clear is why were we not 11-1? That would have at least given you one of the goals you wanted Karl Dorrell to attain, a BCS berth and maybe even a win. Sadly, the '05 Bruins that liked to live on the edge had to settle for a Sun Bowl appearance.
Fast forward to '06 and you can clearly see that we are not even close to being the team we were last year. Karl Dorrell said that this was his "best team yet," but we were out of the Pac-10 running by our third game. Would a good coach who just went 10-2 coach a team to a 7-5 mark at best? The answer is no. The drop-off is never that steep when the coaching is good. This also means that are 7-5 season is highly indicative of what our 10-2 season looked like - several come-from-behind victories against teams that we should have never been trailing. Again, if we were 10-2 with poor coaching that caused us to fall behind inferior opponents, what could that record have been with good coaching? It very well could have been a trip to the National Championship game.
But I digress. I do not want to lament over what could have been. I would like to look forward to the future. Regardless of the coach, UCLA will go at least 8-4 next year due to a favorable schedule and a huge returning class. Think of what this 8-4 can be with a great coach! A coach that doesn't go for a 2-point conversion in the first half only to miss it and be ridiculed by the announcers on national tv, a coach that doesn't "go for it" on 4-and-2 on his own 40 yard line, a coach that doesn't want to see his kicker be the next Heisman winner, and a coach that can call offensive plays on time as to not waste time outs (another issue that has caused announcers to mock UCLA on national television). The future is bright for the Bruins, but under the appropriate leadership. I am sorry to say, but all the evidence makes it clear that Dorrell is not the man that will lead UCLA football to where it should be. The most damning evidence of this is that Trojans (as I have read on many of their websites/blogs and have heard personally) have written you letters in support of Dorrell but in the guise of a Bruin! This is no longer the team of Gary Beban, Jackie Robinson, or Troy Aikman. What I see now only discredits what they have brought to us.
Because of this, I will no longer be attending UCLA football games until a proper head coach is hired. Additionally, I will not be donating any money to UCLA when I complete my law degree unless a proper head coach is hired (I fully intend on donating otherwise). I have encouraged others to do the same. I will be present at the Rose Bowl during the USC-UCLA game in December, but only to wear my "Fire Dorrell" shirt and to pass out flyers, encouraging fans to voice their disatisfaction with the direction of the football program. Why am I taking such measures? Because I fear that the athletic beauracracy at UCLA will not want to admit the mistake they made in hiring Dorrell in the first place. I fear that they will look to his wonderful demeanor and qualities(and I have no doubt that Dorrell is a wonderful man) but fail to look at his abysmal performances on the field. I fear the status quo. We are not just a basketball school; we are an EVERYTHING school.
Mr. Guerrero, I attended UC Irvine while you were the athletic director there, so I am quite aware of the magic touch you have with college sports. Your hiring of Ben Howland only exemplifies this point. You are quite literally one coach away from being one of the greatest athletic directors to grace a college campus. Please make the right decision in regards to UCLA's beloved football program. I do not want to see it spiral into mediocrity.
These decisions are hard, but I hope you make the right one. I've seen you do it before and I know you can do it again.
David J. Montoya III