There is no use of talking about the game at this point. Honestly, after the first couple of touch downs I didn't get all that upset. I was more amused at the comments pouring into our blog threads and email account from distressed alums about the humiliation and pain they were feeling. I couldn't feel any of that because we have had to go through the same embarrassment so many times during what has shaped up to be an ugly, disgraceful regime of Dan Guerrero ("Chianti Dan").
What was telling to me last night was not the searing images of another Bruin collapse at the Mausoleum but the utter lack of respect Chianti Dan showed for thousands of UCLA alums, season ticket holders, students and fans from the greater Bruin Nation by issuing one of the most absurd public statements I have ever read from college athletics administrator.
I don't really give a cr*p about the crock "championship" game on Friday night. Oregon fans, Larry Scott, Pac-12 officials and Morgan Center loons can party it up Eugene for that charade. What I do care about is who UCLA is going to hire as the next coach. It looks like some of the murmurs we have been hearing in the background in recent weeks are now out in public. However, the problem here lies squarely with the incompetent, buffoonish move on the part of Chianti Dan to hold on to Rick Neuheisel for one more game.
By stringing Neuheisel along for few more days, Chianti Dan himself is heightening the sorry spectacle around UCLA football and possibly sabotaging our search for a new head football coach. More on this after the jump.
From the OC Register:
UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel is expected to be fired following Pac-12 championship game against Oregon with Boise State coach Chris Peterson, Houston's Kevin Sumlin and Cincinnati's Butch Jones the leading candidates to replace him.
UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero said after USC's 50-0 blowout of the Bruins on Saturday night that Neuheisel will coach against the Ducks next Friday but declined to commit to the former UCLA Rose Bowl hero beyond that.
Getting rid of Neuheisel will be less expensive than previously reported, with the university owing the coach a $250,000 buyout.
Neuheisel is 21-28 in four seasons at his alma mater. Should the Bruins lose to Oregon in the Pac-12 title game they would slip to 6-7 on the season and have to petition the NCAA for a waiver to play in a bowl game.
"Rick is coaching next week," Guerrero said. "This is a devastating game for us obviously. We expected to have an opportunity to get a signature win and it just didn't happen.
"We did not execute in any aspect of the game today. "
Asked if Neuheisel could save his job with an upset next week at Autzen Stadium, Guerrero said, "Right now I'm going to evaluate this program at the end of the year like I always said. We've got another game to focus on. It's a big game. If we could bounce back like we've bounced back after every bad loss this year and played well the next week we'll see what happens."
Someone clue in Scott Reid it's Chris Petersen not Chris Peterson. But back to the main culprit who is responsible for the total devastation of our major athletic program: Chianti Dan.
WTH is Chianti Dan thinking? Does he really believe that the UCLA community is going to stupid enough to fall for his pathetic and disgusting bamboozlement about UCLA focusing on a "big game"? Is he that naïve or is he just completely a dumb ass, ignorant fool? I have met this guy in person before and he seems nice. I know I am being harsh in my comments here but there is no other way to describe these words and latest action from someone who seems totally hell bent on taking the cowardly way out and showing no desire to make the right and decisive move for our football program.
As we have discussed numerous times before if Chianti Dan had any sense he would have fired Neuheisel after the Debacle in the Desert and have UCLA compete with an interim coach for rest of the season. Our team proved talented enough to win games at the Rose Bowl without any competetent leadership from it's head coach. If Chianti Dan had made the decisive move to pull the trigger after Arizona game, we wouldn't have found ourselves in the absurd situation of last 48 hours, when we still had few dozen delusional and psyhcophant Neubs still spinning the talking points about making a run to the Rose Bowl.
It is clear to me that people like Chianti Dan have survived all these years at UCLA because they have been able to ride the ignorance and delusions of a small segment of UCLA fan base who have always operated with "support the coach at any cost" mindset for years. There is no doubt few of them will pop up if somehow, someway Oregon finds a way to pull of "choke of the century" next week by having the whole "smoke it all" the night before the game against Chianti Dan's doormat program (not going to happen). But why even create that chance.
If Chianti Dan wants to project the image of being a decent Bruin who has any sense of pride in those four letters, he'd let go of Rick Neuheisel today and make sure that all of us don't have to go through the charade for another week. It would also help intensifying the search for our next coach, and not jeopardize UCLA's chances with any of the candidates who are being considered, as other schools have already made their moves or are deep into the process.
What is Chianti Dan going to do? Is he going to remain a coward like he has been all season? Is he going to keep taking the easy way out by letting Neuheisel dangling in the wind in front of the Southern California and national media, while creating a circus hurting our coaching search? Is he going to be that craven? Is he going to continue to act in a way that will strengthen the perception around him of being a lazy bureaucrat? Or will he for once make a decisive move and send the signal the word "accountability" does matter in the world of UCLA Athletics?
If there is no move on the part of Chianti Dan by tonight, we'd think UCLA alums living in the greater LA area and students should consider gathering in front of Morgan Center tomorrow and demanding some answers.