Lisa Horne from FoxSports wrote a great article today detailing the emerging mutiny among UCLA season ticket holders against the incompetent athletic department. The article contains a number of telling quotes from Bruin alums absolutely disgusted with the implosion of the football program. Tellingly the sentiment among Bruin faithful has gone beyond firing of Rick Neuehisel (which is a foregone conclusion) and more towards the systematic failure of the athletic department.
Several fans mentioned what they believe is a policy that would prevent UCLA from hiring a big-time coach - the athletic department will not accept booster donations that are specifically targeted for a coach's salary.
"An outside source is prohibited from paying or regularly supplementing an athletics department staff member's annual salary and from arranging to supplement that salary for an unspecified achievement. This includes the donation of cash from outside sources to the institution earmarked for the staff member's salary or supplemental income. It would be permissible for an outside source to donate funds to the institution to be used as determined by the institution, and it would be permissible for the institution, at its sole discretion, to use such funds to pay or supplement a staff member's salary," said UCLA Director of Executive Relations Marc Dellins, citing NCAA rule 126.96.36.199 on supplemental pay.
I am sure Dellins is a wonderful person but his response could not be lamer. While Dellins cutely tries to hide behind the fact that outside source is prohibited from earmarking a coach's salary, he indirectly confirms what we have been suspecting for a long time: Bruins have been willingly bringing a knife to a gun fight. Dellins concedes that there is nothing that prohibits Bruins from taking big donations from boosters that the AD can use (at its own discretion) to supplement a big name coach's salary.
That is amazing amazing admission from Dellins. To put it more simply Dellins is saying UCLA could use contributions to pay coaches if UCLA chooses to do so, but they will not allow donors to choose to earmark contributions to pay coaches. All of this confirms what we have been suspecting. Our athletic department is run by bunch of out of touch, elitists and tone-deaf bureaucrats, who have no interest in putting together an elite football program.
In a way this is good. This is yet another confirmation for the urgent need of a wholesale regime change in Westwood. Let me repeat what Bruin and 49ers legend Randy Cross told UCLA earlier this week:
Football you have got to spend money to compete. You have to get some cooperation from your admissions department to compete properly. This game of football right now is about money. ...
So if you are not serious about competing, and if you are not serious about spending the amount of money that has to be spent, do everybody a favor and just in football - because you are an academic institution - go to the Ivy League. Play football there but don't keep this charade up. Please.