cross-posted from DumpDorrell.com
The culture of mediocrity that dominates our football program is deeply ingrained and institutionalized (Bob Fields, Don Morrison, Peter Blackman, Terry Donahue). If you look back at all our head coaching hires over the last almost 40 years (!) you can see it plain as day. Let's take a look:
- Karl Dorrell (2003-2007): No previous HC experience, was a WR coach in NFL at time of hire, had OC experience in name only.
- Bob Toledo (1996-2002): Minor HC experience - 4 years at tiny Pacific 2 decades earlier (79-82, going 15-30) and significant OC experience at UCLA, Texas A&M and Oregon.
- Terry Donanue (1976-1995): No HC experience. Insignificant asst HC experience under Pepper Rodgers for a few years at Kansas, then a few years at UCLA.
- Dick Vermeil (1974-1975): No HC experience. A few years assistant at UCLA under Pepper Rodgers.
- Pepper Rodgers (1971-1974): Minor HC experience - 3 years at Kansas (15-16) going 5-5, 9-2, and 1-9. THEN we hire him.
- Tommy Prothro (1965-1970): Major HC experience - 9 years HC experience include at Iowa St. and Oregon St. Led OSU to 2 Rose Bowls and a Heisman QB. Assistant under the great Red Sanders for many years incl. NC year 1954.
Looking at that list it is clear to anyone that UCLA has not hired PROVEN HEAD COACHING EXPERIENCE in 40 years! 40 years of doing the same thing = culture of mediocrity = commitment to mediocrity. Morgan Center and Murphy Hall think they can get by on the cheap so they hire inexperience. It has been over 20 years since we won a Rose Bowl. Wonder why?
How much longer do we keep supporting this pathetic excuse for a football program?? How much longer are Morgan Center and Murphy Hall going to pay lip service to excellence while they raise fees and donations for their budgets? Will we EVER hire a coach with successful head coaching experience again? Is there a reason we simply don't try ... just for the heck of it?
Terry Donahue may end up being the worst coach at UCLA of all time. Why? Because his early success, though matched by painful mediocrity his last 7 long years (43-36-1!), has somehow convinced the powers that be that we don't need to change what we are doing - buying cheap. Therefore, Toledo (7 years). Therefore, Dorrell (5 years). Therefore .... Chow? Then Walker? That is at least 10 more years of mediocrity ... by which time UCLA will be long out of the national discussion on college football. That is at least partially Donahue's legacy (of course, it is largely Peter "Killer" Dalis' legacy).
As we have said, this hire is very important hire for the future of our football program. This hire will signal what football means to the university. If we do more of the same, the football program will suffer for many many years as people will tune out. UCLA has to get it right and break this numbing comfort with mediocrity. We have to hire a proven successful head football coach.