It's Monday morning, and it's back to the grind. So, if you're like me, and unable to really focus first thing on a Monday morning, let's get to the bits and pieces of news from around the UCLA-iverse to get you going this sunny Monday here in the Golden State:
- Starting on a serious note, former UCLA basketball player and current 20th Century Fox movie executive Gavin Smith, has been missing since last Tuesday evening. Smith, a former player under Coach Wooden, is approx. 6'6", 210 pounds, and was last seen in Agoura Hills/Oak Park area in a black Mercedes (California license plate 6EKT044). More information available from the Hollywood Reporter and the Los Angeles Times. Let's all keep our fingers crossed that Gavin returns home safe and sound. Anyone with any information that can help locate Gavin Smith, please contact the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department at (323)-890-5500.
- Turning to another former Bruin with a current student athlete, former UCLA football head coach Rick Neuheisel was at UCLA's spring game, ostensibly to cheer on not just his own son, freshman QB Jerry Neuheisel, but also the many guys on the field who he recruited to wear the Blue and Gold.
- While the biggest question at the start of the Jim Mora era at UCLA is who will be the Bruins' starting QB on August 30 against Rice, one former Bruin QB, Chris Forcier (who ironically left Westwood before Neuheisel implemented an offense, the pistol, built for someone with his skill set), was signed as an undrafted free agent by many Bruins' favorite NFL team, the Jacksonville
- The 2012 NFL Draft wasn't kind to UCLA, with not a single Bruin getting their name called in any of the seven rounds, and the early draft projections for 2013 won't sit well with the UCLA faithful either. Yahoo! Sports' Mike Huguenin (who is a real person, as far as we know, unlike people that ESPN puts on their payroll) is projecting hated Trogan master d**che-bag QB Matt Barkley as the #1 pick in next year's NFL draft. Unless karma comes calling and he spends all season on his back in an endless Pac-12 sack party.
- One last football note, that is more academic than athletic, but with the death of shoe-in-to-make-Canton former Chargers linebacker Junior Seau, UCLA's Brain Injury Research Center is finding itself in the middle of the on-going discussions about sports concussions, brain injuries, and the long-term impact on former athletes' health. Interesting stuff.
- Turning to the non-revenue sports, most of UCLA's squads were not in action this past week, with many gearing up for NCAA tournament action starting at the back-end of this week. That said, the #17-ranked women's softball team was in full swing (no pun intended) this weekend, picking up two out of three wins over the #13-ranked Arizona Wildcats. Starting on Friday, the Lady Bruins got the weekend started with a 10-4 win over the Wildcats, led by a solid complete game by Jessica Hall (7.0 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 6 K), homers from Stephany LaRosa (2-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, 1 HR) and Alyssa Tiumalu (2-4, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 HR), and multi-RBI games from Andrea Harrison (1-3, 1 R, 2 RBI) and Samantha Camuso (1-4, 2 RBI). Saturday was more of the same for UCLA, with the ladies picking up a solid 7-2 victory, with Jessica Hall (5.0 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 4 K) winning her second game of the weekend, and solid offensive production from the usual suspects: Harrison (3-4, 1 R, 1 RBI), B.B. Bates (3-3, 1 R, 1 RBI), Camuso (0-1, 2 RBI), and Tiumalu (0-2, 2 RBI).
- Sunday marked UCLA's final home game of the regular season, but Senior Day did not provide the Bruins with the complete sweep they were hoping for, as they fell just short, losing 7-6. Hall (4.0 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 K), pitching in relief of Ally Carda (3.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 1 K) for a second straight day got saddled with the loss, bringing her total to 18-11 on the year. Camuso (3-4, 2 R, 6 RBI, 2 HR), in her final regular season home game for UCLA, did everything she could to bring home a UCLA win, but her two homers and six RBIs weren't enough. Following the weekend, the Bruins find themselves at 35-16 overall and 11-10 in Pac-12 play. The Lady Bruins will close out the regular season this upcoming weekend, heading up to Eugene for a three-game weekend set against the Ducks.
Alright folks, those are your Bruin Bites to get your work week started. Fire away with your thoughts, opinions, or additions in the comment threads.