While a school from Middle of Tennessee was mutilating Coach John Wooden's basketball program at a garbage dump in downtown Los Angeles, Dan Guerrero's staff emailed out yet another LOLz "blog" post to the Bruin online community.
I was actually looking forward to reading Dan's "blog" this week because I was anxious to find out what kind of "product" would come out from the collective brainstorming at Morgan Center after what has been some of the ugliest few days in the history of recent UCLA athletics. To date everyone of these "blogs" have been total fail and have a made mockery out of the concept of digital outreach. You can read them. You can revisit the previous three "blogs" here, here and here.
I didn't think the communication effort could not have gotten any worse after what we have read in last three weeks. Well I guess I keep misunderestimating the prowess of UCLA athletics officials.
So let's get to this "blog." What did Guerrero have to say about the historical debacle against LMU? His "writers" (using the term charitably here) thought they could hide it in a general section labeled "follow the bouncing ball" and bury it under the report of UCLA women's basketball. Dan then sheepishly mentions this:
The men's team struggled out of the gate, but Coach Howland and his coaching staff will use this loss to stress the importance of being ready to play against any opponent on our schedule this year. As in past years, the Bruins should be prepared to get every team's best effort.
LOL. Remember most UCLA alums were reading those words while watching MTSU wiping the garbage arena's floor with Ben Ball Poodles. Here is a hint Dan. If you want to market yourself as an honest, forth right and no-nonsense leader of UCLA athletics program, you'd be better served if you are actually honest about how you feel about UCLA hoops. If you're feeling about UCLA basketball is this vanilla and milquetoast, you shouldn't be leading our program. On other hand, if you actually are as upset as we all are and are just serving up bureaucratic press release drivel, you shouldn't be sending out this kind of ridiculous missive.
Oh, I am just getting started here. I haven't gotten to football and Pauley renovation yet. Come on the other side of the flip.
If you only skimmed the first few grafs of Dan's email ... err "blog" ... you wouldn't have read anything about the latest embarrassment for the football program. Just like he was after the Arizona debacle, Dan remained in his delusional state of mine about his joke of a football program:
While it was extremely unfortunate that the football team was unable to sustain the momentum generated by back-to-back wins the two previous weeks in its game against Utah, this Saturday's game against Colorado will give us the opportunity to end our home conference season on a high note, as well as to honor our 19 seniors, who will be playing in their final game at the Rose Bowl.
We will need a win at home on Saturday and another on the road at USC the following week to assure ourselves of a spot in the conference championship game and all but wrap up a spot in a bowl game, two of the goals we set out to achieve before the season.
So Dan and his associates are still trying to put out the pathetic spin that if this joke of a football team somehow gets out of the laughable "Southern" division, the season would be considered a "success." This kind of propaganda from Morgan Center shows not only how little respect they have for the previous tradition of UCLA football, but how little they think of UCLA alums, students and fans following the program.
Luckily, it appears that our efforts here at Bruins Nation and other places to hold Dan and UCLA athletics accountable are having results. This is why we are seeing desperate ploys like this (also from Dan's blog):
By the time you read this blog, you are likely to have seen some published reports about UCLA seeking an affiliated name for the new Pauley Pavilion when it opens in the fall of 2012. We are indeed investigating that possibility at present. If it comes to fruition, I can assure you that it will be tastefully done.
We are pursuing this revenue stream after consulting with and receiving the blessing of the Pauley family. Any revenue generated from such a deal will go directly into paying off the debt on the renovations.
It's not that difficult to read through those two grafs and discern the state of fundraising under Dan's incompetent leadership is not in great shape. It's not that difficult to understand why UCLA donors would want to pitch in any more in these economic times into an athletic regime that is now responsible for one the darkest periods in UCLA athletics history when it comes to our major revenue programs. Those grafs sound desperate.
Those two grafs also reek of total incompetence because they lead to questions of why this option was not explore at the very beginning so that UCLA could go "big" in this renovation project, instead of doing it what has looked as a half ass attempt to renovate an old gym, and not doing proper justice to the legacy of the greatest Coach in this game. I guess they finally got a clue and are getting Coach a statute. That is something. But given the level of incompetence we have seen in execution on number of projects under Guerrero, I have no confidence that that will be done properly as well.
So, I am not sure what I think about the state of UCLA basketball at this point. I am going to wait to see how this year unfolds and how Howland closes on the recruiting front. I do know that UCLA alums and students shouldn't be giving one penny to this athletic department at this point, until Gene Block brings in a first tier football coach and shows his true commitment to the money driver of our athletic program. We can address the Howland situation at the end of the year (while we keep the pressure on him to succeed). For now though it is up to UCLA alums, season ticket holders and donors to stop supporting the bamboozlement from Westwood any way.
The only way to send a message to Dan and his associates at this point IMO would be freezing out any support for his pathetic athletic programs. If you are getting fundraising direct mail from UCLA athletics, this video is a simple example of what you can do.
Folks should also consider stop going to football games and I would suggest that students and alums should not bother at this point showing up for hoops games at the garbage dump near Southern Cal. Showing up at these games and injecting revenues only enables this kind of mediocrity that is insulting to the legacies of Bruin tradition and a stain on those four letters. We fully support our student athletes and appreciate what they do but when you are buying tickets and paying for overpriced concessions at a garbage dump like "the Sports Arena" you are only enabling and furthering the bamboozlement.
There is no good argument to continue to support the disgraceful and incompetent leadership, until there is a move to make wholesale regime changes in Westwood.