FanPost

AN OPEN LETTER TO DAN GUERRERO

Dear Dan,

         I write to you with a mixture of pride and pain. Pride because I graduated from UCLA; pain because I think my alma mater has been so poorly served by Karl Dorrell and his defenders. You played for UCLA's baseball team and were elected to our university's Athletic Hall of Fame.

       And so I say bring us home to our collective past.

       Any discussion of UCLA's football coach has to begin with leadership -- making players confident about the direction of their program. Players have to believe a coach can develop a successful game plan and make the right choice at critical times (as opposed to the way Karl Dorrell called three running plays in the closing minutes when Notre Dame had stacked its defensive line). Players have to believe a coach will make a direct and honest evaluation of their ability (as opposed to the way Karl Dorrell vacillated between Drew Olsen and Matt Moore in 2004). Players have to believe a head coach won't duck responsibility for his mistakes (as opposed to the way Karl Dorrell has shifted blame to his assistants). Players have to believe a coach will succeed as a recruiter (as opposed to the way Karl Dorrell's record has led many recruits to regard UCLA as a second or third choice).

        And so I say bring us home to our collective past.

        As far as I can tell, Karl Dorrell brings the attitude of a CEO to his football team. I wish him well if he enters the business world, but a CEO is not what athletes who are 18, 19 or in their early 20s need. They need someone who demands their best effort and inspires them to give it. You've already given us an example of such a coach: Ben Howland, your choice to continue the legacy of John Wooden. It no longer matters if Karl Dorrell beats USC. He has established a pattern that is clear and disturbing. Equally important, his defenders every day sound more and more like those who contended UCLA could not find a better basketball coach than Steve Lavin.
    UCLA's students, alumni and fans have so many reasons for pride. We're one NCAA title away from 100 championships. No other university has achieved that, and we have yet to celebrate our 90th anniversary. We are the school of Jackie Robinson and Rafer Johnson, so it's painful to hear some of Karl Dorrell's defenders argue that racism is behind the effort to replace him. No one expects UCLA to dazzle the football world with one perfect season after another. But you had it right when you fired Bob Toledo. "We want to have a national caliber program" is the way you put it.
        Now it's time to stop the bleeding.

        And so I say bring us home to our collective past.

<em>This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of BruinsNation's (BN) editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of BN's editors.</em>

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