Let's start our Monday walk checking in with Dan Guerrero. As silverlakebruin pointed out over the weekend under Dan Guerrero's leadership last week NCAA changed its summer rules so that college coaches could spend more time with the student athletes. It seems DG's influence in the NCAA is getting noticed as couple of days ago he was mentioned as one of "the nation's most poweful in college sports" by the Orlando Sentinel. From yet another summer "list":
12. Dan Guerrero, UCLA athletic director and incoming chair of the NCAA Men's Tournament selection committee.
As David Wharton from the LAT notes:
By the Orlando Sentinel's reckoning, Guerrero places at No. 12, just below the likes of network television executives, conference commissioners and NCAA President Myles Brand. He is the only athletic director to make the top 20.
Now in his eighth season in Westwood, Guerrero is the incoming chair of the NCAA men's basketball committee.
Only two coaches made the list -- Florida football Coach Urban Meyer at No. 13 and Kentucky men's basketball Coach John Calipari at No. 14.
While DG deserves a lot of kudos, we need to note that being mentioned one of the most powerful officials in the NCAA (albeit the article mentions "college sports") might not be seen as all that significant given how erratic, incompetent and impotent NCAA has appeared in last few years in enforcing its own rules. Plus, while lot of us are happy as of right now with the state of UCLA athletics, we are keeping a close eye on how he execute the renovation of Pauley Pavillion among a number of important projects, which also includes building solid foundations for both our football and baseball programs. So we will see how it all works out in the coming years since DG's record is not yet complete at UCLA. To continue with our walk come with me after the jump.
Speaking of the football program, Tobi Umodu has his weekly writeup on UCLA athletics up on the Canyon News. For this edition Tobi interviewed couple of the unsung heros in the football squad. He talked to Leandro Barbosa, a walkon junior linebacker about his role in the team:
Q: Do you think your role on the team is an important one?
A: "I think my role, whether it be on scout team or whatever, [is being] considered part of the team. It’s important because I’m working as part of the team not just working for myself."
Q: It is worth it, working as hard as you do for almost nothing, and do you enjoy it?
A: "I personally really enjoy working out and playing football. I feel it’s worth it because it is way bigger than just the game of football in helping me prepare for the game of life. If I can get through this I know I can make it later on."
And then asked sophomore gymnast Brianna McCulloug, who also serves as a manager of the football team about her contributions to the program:
Q: How do you feel about your role on the team?
A: "I’m a part of the team and I feel like everything I do is appreciated"
Q: Your situation is a bit different from a walk-on because you’re a manager, but you still have to endure the same workouts as anyone else. Why do you think it’s important to work just as hard as they do even though you will not be doing the same things during matches?
A: "I feel whatever you do, you should give 115 percent. Even though you think you are not getting any recognition doesn’t always mean people do not see how hard you are working and what you are doing."
As Tobi notes later hopefully that kind of attitude and commitment will rub off on all their team-mates and make them work even harder during the off season.
While we are on the topic of working hard, DC had a great debut for the Hornets summer league team this past weekend. Even though his team lost by a score of 86-92, DC had 19 points, six assists and five rebounds. More details over the Hornet's NBA blog.
Note how he gives UCLA props at the very end. KL once again displaying even though he was with us only for one year, in spirit he is a Ben Ball warrior for life.