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Lavin playing the LA Times ...

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There is a reason why we are so contemptuous of some of the sports reporters in traditional media. Lot of these guys are just beat reporters with no genuine interest in sports. Lot of these guys were just the losers in their respective school of journalism where they were never good enough to get a serious reporting gig.  So sometimes these guys get stuck in a beat assignment they have no genuine interest in covering or have absolutely no genuine passion or interest in. That is why we sometimes get stuck with clueless wankers like Steve Springer covering UCLA basketball for a paper like the Los Angeles Times. Steve writes a little report today in LA Times getting the "expert impression" of Steve Lavin on UCLA basketball who is setting expectations for rest of the season:

"The next step for this team is to win the Pac-10 tournament. That would build momentum for the NCAA tournament. It's the next step in maintaining respect for the UCLA program, which I know all about better than anybody," Lavin said.

"The steps they take this year will lead to success next season. I think that, next year, they will be capable of cutting down the nets, of winning the championship."
Just who the heck is Steve Lavin to set expectations for this UCLA basketball team? Anyone who cannot see what Lavin is doing here just doesn't understand how this worthless moron operated through the media during his few years at UCLA. All Lavin is doing right now is setting expectations of winning the Pac-10 tourney and going to the Elite Eight.  Lavin is building this up so that if UCLA doesn't achieve those goals it will look badly upon Coach Howland as not meeting the expectations set by an impartial basketball expert like Lavin.

What I don't get is why reporters like Steve Springer are even publishing this kind of bullshit report without disclosing the fact what a miserable failure Lavin was as a head coach of UCLA basketball. Lavin was the worst coach in the history of UCLA basketball. We don't need to rehash the gory details of all those record setting losses, embarrassing losses, and teams imploding through the regular season. But if you really want to read up quickly here is a read from the Daily Bruin yesterday:
Lavin lost his first game as coach at home to unranked Tulsa. Every season he coached, Lavin lost more and more games, and the recruits started going elsewhere. There was the string of baffling losses to programs like Detroit Mercy, Ball State, Cal State Northridge, and University of San Diego.

Then of course came the debacle of 2002-03, my first year at UCLA. The Bruins were ranked No. 14 preseason but inexplicably lost both their exhibition games to teams named the EA Sports All-Stars and Branch West.

[...]

The Lavin era can be summed in the three games UCLA played against Arizona that year. The Wildcats came to UCLA and smashed the Bruins by 37. It was the worst loss for UCLA in the history of Pauley Pavilion.

But somehow in the Pac-10 tournament, with Arizona ranked No. 1, Lavin pulled out a 96-87 win. Of course, the Bruins then lost a one-point decision to Oregon the next night, blowing a double digit lead with less than two minutes to go. It was classic Lavin: world-beaters one night, doormats the next.

That horrible first year, I went to every game at Pauley Pavilion even though most students didn't. I used to show up 15 minutes before tip-off and sit anywhere I wanted. That's a stark contrast to today when I have to sleep on the concrete if I want a good seat. Howland brought the excitement back to UCLA basketball.
How the h*ll Lavin is qualified to give an opinion on whether or not Bruins should be winning the Pac-10 tourney or going to the Elite Eight when he has no such accomplish to boot. And no ... going to the Elite Eight courtesy of Dollar, O'Bannon, JR, Toby, and Kris doesn't count because that was basically a Harrick coached basketball team during the 96-97 season. Lavin is not qualified to give any kind of expert analysis on UCLA basketball. He doesn't have the standing to give an opinion on Bruin basketball. Period.

It is a travesty and an utter sham that an idiot like Steve Springer actually wrote up this kind of nonsense for his report on UCLA basketball taking Lavin seriously. It throws out all his credibility as a serious reporter covering one of the marquee programs of college basketball. That is why we have such a difficult time in having any confidence in the crap coming out of the traditional media. Sure every now and then there are reporters like Brian Dohn who actually do some research and has the ability to put everything in context. But it seems like for every Dohn there are 5 morons like Springer.  And conman like Lavin keeps taking advantage of their cluelessness weaving their dangerous narrative into the media. Thats how he survived seven years at UCLA painting Bruin fans as unreasonable while destroying the foundation of a program. Idiots like Springer keep letting this jerk coast without owning up to any sense of accountability. Sad for a paper like Los Angeles Times. Really sad.