I needed some time for retrospect after yesterday's horrifying 44-6 loss to a Utah team that was supposedly beset with a rash of injuries and two early losses to start the season. Maybe there have been worse ass-kickings out there before but this Stalingrad-esque performance yesterday left me in a funk that I haven't been in for quite some time. I tried drowning out my frustrations with Coors Light which temporarily helped. But when I awoke this morning with headache and all, the reality of yesterday hit me like a cold splash of water on my face; the literal unbelievability of it all.
I have been a die-hard UCLA fan since the late 60's when I was a schoolboy growing up in Iowa Hawkeye country. I've had to endure a lot of heartache and frustration over the years (as well as the good times, too). I've twice have had to endure Hawkeye fans pelting me with bottle caps, fruit, popcorn, etc. during two UCLA losses in Iowa City (1974 and 1981). I even had to root against my home state (and future alma mater) when the Bruins and the Hawkeyes squared off in the 1986 Rose Bowl. But I did and would gladly do it again in a heartbeat. I'll always have a soft spot for the U of I; but I'm by far and away a Bruin first. In short, I LOVE UCLA.
That said, am I justified - not being a current student or alumnus - but strictly as a loyal, life-long fan, in asking Dan Guerrero to begin a nation-wide search that will bring in a coach who not only is a proven winner but someone who will REALLY take us to that next level; someone who can have us competing on a consistent basis for conference titles as well as B.C.S. bowl games? I'm not smart enough to profess to know who that candidate is but after yesterday's debacle in SLC there HAS to be someone out there that DG can lure to Westwood to take over the reigns of our once-proud football program.
I know that I don't have the voice that many of you here at BN do. But ANY support that I may have had or held out for KD vanished FOREVER after what took place yesterday. I am SO bloody sick and tired of these embarrassing losses and appearances in 2nd and 3rd tier bowl games (where we seem to have a penchant for losing to likes of Wyoming, Fresno St. - WTF???!). I am so damned tired of having to play second fiddle in Los Angeles to USC (even after 13-9) where they get all the recognition and glory and we're just an afterthought.
Perhaps what I'm still seething over is how KD left the bulk of his starters in the game LONG after the issue had been decided. What the HELL was BO doing in there late in the 4th quarter anyway? How many INT's does KD have to let him throw before he loses whatever miniscule confidence he has left? I had to laugh when Chane Moline was in there on the last series. What the hell, Karl? You mean it took you THAT long to get that guy in there? Oh yeah, and thanks A LOT for keeping Bruce Davis and Shannon Tevaga in there so they could get racked up as well.
Now, we could (and hopefully will) rebound from this latest disaster, win out and still earn a Pac-10 title and a B.C.S. bowl bid but I'm not counting on it. I'd love to think our guys have the ability to bounce back after yesterday but what worries me is that you could actually see how disillusioned the guys were on the sidelines toward the bitter end. And I think that they realize they had their highest hopes and dreams all shot in the ass.
Thanks a lot, KD.