They have gone through eight coaches, seeing everything from a classic Larry Brown two-year drive-by to the successful but ethically challenged tenure of Jim Harrick.
But in luring Ben Howland back home to Southern California from Pittsburgh in 2003, U.C.L.A. finally appears to have found the right coach to rebuild a dynasty in Westwood.
In beating third-seeded Xavier, 76-57, Howland has led his top-seeded Bruins to the Final Four for the third consecutive season.
This marks the first time since Wooden's tenure as head coach that U.C.L.A. has reached the Final Four in three consecutive seasons. It also puts Howland in elite contemporary company; Michigan State's Tom Izzo and Duke's Mike Krzyzewski are the only coaches to lead their programs to three consecutive Final Fours since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.
Photo Credit:AP Photo/Matt York (via ESPN)
And just think Robert Kuwada from the OC Register insulted him by calling out our the coaching matchup as "even" for two straight games. What did Love say about Karma? It's a ___.
So much more to come. So much more to talk about.
But for now the night belongs to the best basketball coach in America. It belongs to our Ben Ball warriors. And it belongs to all of us. Keep celebrating.
Consider this another Final 4 celebration victory thread.