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Don't Lose Hope

There is not much point to analyze the actual game from last night. To put it simply it was KD's "CSUN moment" at the Rose Bowl.  It is over. Read various UCLA boards linked on the blogroll here on BN. He is done. He has no support. His hardcore supporters are all either gone or have changed their tune. They know it.  They can feel it.  And by the sounds and pictures from ABC's coverage of last night game, it couldn't be clear the whole Rose Bowl knows what we have known for more than two years - the emperor has no clothes. KD is a joke as a football coach. Yes he sounds like a decent, honest, and hard working human being unlike that imbecile Steve Lavin, but just like Lavin he is now a joke.

And the word is getting out. Not just here online but also offline. Dan Guerrerro is hearing our frustration, and he actually had some real interesting comments in the LA Times:

UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero heard some harsh words from fans as he walked off the Rose Bowl field Saturday after a 37-15 loss to Washington State.

The words were directed toward Guerrero, but the topic was Coach Karl Dorrell, whose team is 4-4 after three consecutive defeats.

Some in the crowd made it clear that they wanted a new coach, but Guerrero would have none of it.

Guerrero said Dorrell, whose teams had won 10 straight at the Rose Bowl before Saturday's defeat, has four games left to "right the ship."

"With any program, my issue is to provide the resources and the things needed to develop a successful program and that's what we're going to do," Guerrero said. "Last year we had a pretty darn good year, so you don't throw out that good year just because we're struggling right now.

"There are reasons why we're not clicking on all cylinders. Obviously, we just need to bring this team along and allow them to grow.

"Hopefully, we'll get some good wins here at the end of the season."
Now despite Lonnie White (who by the way for your info is apparently a Trojan alum) best effort to coax some kind of word of confidence out of DG on KD, DG said very clearly that KD has to "right the ship," by getting some "good wins" in rest of the season. I think it is more than reasonable to interpret these comments as DG basically signaling KD that he needs to turn this around and win 3 out of his last 4 games, including a victory over Southern Cal.

Now, while DG has somewhat laid down the gauntlet for KD, we have to do our part. You have already seen what we can do to get the message out. Our little internet poll instantly got picked up by CNNSI and ESPN.  Some of you are already pulling of creative stunts to get the message out. But we need to keep at it. Remember this post from M, in which he outlined some of the things we can do to pump up the volume:
  • Work in concert.   Given the realities of big time college athletics, you need to work with others to have the maximum impact.   Cancelling your yearly donation or season tickets may not do much, but cancelling them with many others in a choreographed way just might.

  • Get the message out.   Let people know what's going on.   Spread the word any way you can, on the Internet, with posters, or flyers.    Write letters to the Times, comment on Dohn's blog, whatever.   The more information that is out there, the better.

  • Take it to the streets.  Go ahead with the t-shirt idea.   Start wearing them on campus and to games.    Or paint your message on banners, or, better yet, your chest.   And don't forget the send us pictures, or post them yourself on BN, along with a personal message about what inspired you to take that simple action.
  • Share your passion.   Come on Bruins Nation, and share with us your stories on why you became a Bruin, are passionate about UCLA sports, and then why you are fed up with Bruin football.

  • Contact the Morgan Center.  A well organized email, letter, telephone and/or petition campaign (again, think concert of action) can up the pressure.   Let them know that 7-8 wins and an occassional lower tier bowl game aren't enough. Keep it calm and fact based (and by no means personal).   Remember, well supported, coherent arguments breed credibility.

  • Use emerging technologies.   Start a campaign on Facebook.   Use Myspace.  Comment on blogs like Bruin Nation.   Do whatever you can to get more like minded people involved.   Personally, I think the Facebook idea has the potential to huge.     It's never been easier to organize groups of people, and take near instant action.

  • Prepare for the long road.  One letter writing campaign isn't going to do it.    Any effective effort is going to take great thought, persistence and resolve.
I see in the comments some of you are already working on t-shirt designs. This is great. Whatever you come up with, we will more than get behind it and actively promote it here on BN.

But I also think when you are doing these little things like wearing t-shirts at games, on campus, or at Bruin gatherings, take pictures and fire them back to us or post them here on BN. Let us know the baby steps you are taking to get the word out.  Remember it was actually a threat of student protest in South Bend which got the Notre Dame brass to move against Willingham.  I do believe the UCLA students and alums are creative, intelligent, and passionate enough to pull this off.  Remember those two brave students who started  I think we have the power to amplify their wonderful efforts to expose an incompetent coach out in public.

Whatever you do - do not lose hope. I will not. I love UCLA basketball. But I will not use basketball as an excuse to forget about football.  I love everything about UCLA including our football tradition. So I will personally keep talking about our football program no matter how painful it is relentlessly, and keep exposing KD.

Now I hope all of you will be doing the same both online and offline. Let's take our program back. Just don't lose hope or give up on taking back our proud football tradition. I am pretty sure we are not bunch of cowardly quitters like Karl Dorrell.