I've been a lurker here at BN for a good year or so now, but with today's events, I felt compelled to join, and write about the 8-clap outside of the Reagan Center. I live on campus, and when I read about his passing today, I knew I had to go down. So I threw on my 07-08 Den shirt (last year we made the Final Four), and walked down with a friend.
There weren't as many people there as I'd expected, but still a good showing. The event was a good mix of somber respect and Bruin pride. We did our 8-claps, and cheered, and chanted for Wooden. Then Mustafa Abdul-Hamid got up on a ledge with a bullhorn to say a few words. I couldn't hear everything, because I was further away from him, but I could distinctly make out him saying that the number of people in attendance was a "testament to his greatness". Abdul-Hamid then led us in a moment of silence. As I was heading back, I caught a candle-lighting, followed by another moment of silence.
It was nice to see a bunch of Bruins there to support and honor Coach Wooden. I got to catch up with some friends, and saw a bunch of people I recognized from various campus groups, so it was nice to bring us all together. It was also wonderful to realize that so many of us care so strongly, even though as children of the late 80s/early 90s, we never got to witness Wooden's greatness in person. To take this time out of studying (it's the start of Finals, after all), and walk down to participate in such a simple event, truly is a testament to the lasting impact Coach Wooden had on the Bruin family. He will be missed.
RIP Coach Wooden.