Update [2008-3-30 23:56:41 by Telemachus]: Post updated with link the the last basket by Desire Gabou
I have been thinking all day on whether or not to take apart Plaschke's second consecutive garbage column (sorry will not provide any link) in today's LA Times. I was thinking whether I should spend some time in shredding his drivel line by line like we have done on number of occasions here on BN. Then it hit me. Why bother giving a loser like Plaschke the satisfaction of responding on the home page given the fact the guy has nothing to do with UCLA. He has absolutely no standing to offer an opinion as a representative of the greater UCLA community.
He didn't graduate from our alma mater. He doesn't follow our basketball program on a day-to-day basis. I don't believe he goes to most of our games. I don't believe he has season tickets. He certainly doesn't write about our team on a regular basis. So exactly WTF he is to set expectations on what will it take to consider Coach Howland's 5th season as a successful one at UCLA? (hint we are going to be happy with the final outcome of 2007-8 no matter what happens in San Antonio).
So forget village idiots like Plaschke and let's zero in what we have in Bruins Nation. And for that if you haven't done it yet read this article from Jason King in Yahoo Sports. Jason went against the conventional wisdom in today's MSM and exposed the 'most despised team in America':
If Kevin Love was the ogre that many believe, UCLA's 260-pound forward would've swatted Desire Gabou's layup attempt into the rafters as time expired in the Bruins' 88-78 victory over Western Kentucky on Thursday.
And then he would've pounded his chest.
Love, though, did neither.
Instead, the future NBA forward stepped aside as Gabou drove into the lane seconds after being inserted in the final minute. When the mop-up player released his shot, Love didn't even jump.
"Really?" said Love, when told that Gabou hadn't scored a basket all season. "Good for him. I could've blocked it, but we were up. We were going to win.
"For all I knew the kid could've been a senior. It could've been the last game he ever played. So I figured I'd just let him score a layup in the NCAA tournament."
Gabou said the moment is one he'll always remember.
"I don't know much about Kevin Love," he said, "but I thought that was a pretty nice gesture."
Really, folks. This is the most despised team in America? This is the team that everyone suddenly loves to loathe?
Honestly, why all the hate for UCLA?
The Bruins play a team-oriented, unselfish brand of basketball that relies on strong defense. They make good grades, avoid trouble off the court and exhibit good sportsmanship on it.
Desire Gabou scores the last basket for Western Kentucky
Yeap. Read the whole article full of common sense here. My only nitpick with that article was that I don't think we can ever imply UCLA as the "New Duke." If anything Duke became the "new UCLA" back in the 80s and 90s when our program was just drifting through. All we are going through now is that UCLA simply re-emerging as "UCLA." And no matter what happens in San Antonio nothing will change that dynamic because under Coach Howland we are going to keep coming back for more year after year in Westwood.
Speaking of Coach Howland, Jason wasn't done. After last night's game when village idiots like Plaschke was spewing garbage without any sense of perspective, once again Jason offered up to his readers what we have known for a while here on BN: after all these years we have the right guy in charge of Coach Wooden's program:
"I'm happy for my players," Howland said. "This is all about them."
Not exactly, coach.
All-American forward Kevin Love is one of the top players in college basketball, and UCLA touts a pair of NBA guards in Russell Westbrook and Darren Collison. But the Bruins always have attracted high-caliber players.
For 28 years, though, they never could find a coach quite like Howland.
"You don't make it to the Final Four three straight times," Collison said. "Obviously, coaching has something to do with it."
It's not as if folks in Westwood are comparing Howland to Wooden. Considering Wooden won 10 NCAA titles from 1964 to 1975, they probably never will.
Still, in this age of parity - and with so many players leaving school early for the NBA - what Howland has accomplished is a remarkable feat. [...]
Even if it doesn't happen for the Bruins this spring, UCLA fans have to appreciate the stability Howland has brought back to the program.
Seriously there are so many wonderful things to celebrate, cherish, and discuss here on BN. We have little less than 6 days to get ready for a huge game. We know our boys are going to come out prepared and ready for a great Memphis team. So considering all of that there is no need to get all worked up over constant negativity come from the local chicken little like Bill Plaschke.
BTW it appears godblesstyus95 might have come up with the perfect nick name for Coach Howland: "the roofer"?
Photo Credit:AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill (via ESPN)
Hmmmm. The Roofer? I kind of like it.
What do you all think?