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Encouraging Signs ...

We have two important football notes this Saturday morning. First, UCLA and DeWayne Walker has a reached a deal that will keep Walker in Westwood for at least one more year:

UCLA will not have to worry about defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker taking another job as the two sides agreed in principle to a one-year deal, Bruins coach Karl Dorrell said Friday.

The deal is expected to give Walker a raise over the $250,000 he made this year, and includes other benefits to increase the value of the deal, sources said. However, the deal must be approved by the University of California Regents during a meeting next month.

"We have an agreement now, and it's something we're excited about," Dorrell said. "He's committed to continuing to build our defense to be one of the best in the country. We had a great turnaround this year, and we're going to keep building for that to get better year after year."

Days after a stellar defensive effort led the Bruins to a 13-9 upset of USC on Dec. 2, Dorrell and athletic director Dan Guerrero spoke about doing what was necessary to keep Walker.
This is good news and actually more significant than just the surface story of Walker being here for at least one more year. Once again, DG is sending clear cut signal that it's not like the old penny pinching times of the Peter Dalis era when the Bruins were stingy about paying their coaches. For the second year in a row, the Bruins have loosened their purse strings to bring in or keep good assistant coaches. And you combine this with the rumors that there were talks with coaches like Mariucci, I will say it again, if and when time comes for the Bruin to look for a new football coach, DG (UCLA) will pay up. And this is nothing but good news for Bruin football fans.

Second, Yoyo already pointed to the LA Times story about Cowan getting start for the Emerald Bowl. Dohn has more on this including these comments from Ben Olson:
"Obviously, I want to be out there playing, but coach is going to make a decision that he thinks is best for the team, and I support that," Olson said. "I'll be ready, I guess. The same (as it was) for the last three or four weeks."

Olson said his focus is getting ready for spring practice.

"It's all good," Olson said. "It'll all work itself out. You just have to be confident in your abilities."
That is the perfect attitude/comments I'd like to see from SPJ. Hope he keeps his chin up and is ready to go, should Cowan be ineffective in the Emerald Bowl. I have no doubt that competition during spring practice will make both SPJ and St. Patrick better, which will bode well for Bruin football.

So, from the news on Walker, to who is starting in the Emerald Bowl (and how SPJ is reacting to it), it's all good in the world of Bruin football. At least at this snapshot in time there are some encouraging signs from the football program. Let's hope Dorrell doesn't blow it.

GO BRUINS.