Finally someone over at the Eastern Sports Programming Network (well its their west coast beat reporter, Ed Graney) takes note of what is going in Westwood. Here in Graney on how Howland's Bruins are rolling along despite all the injuries:
The man was a trainer for the U.S. Olympic boxing team in 1984, a side that won nine of 11 gold medals. He has seen physical pain at its most heightened stage. Then came this college basketball season.
Spino, the team's athletic trainer, is in his 33rd season at UCLA and the Bruins are seemingly killing more and more trees each day to properly list their medical report. It's more detailed than a BlackBerry screen.
Which makes UCLA's success all the more impressive.
Ben Howland is in his third season as coach and his Bruins are rolling along despite the mounting bumps and bruises that continue to torment his roster. UCLA is 19-4 overall, 9-2 atop the Pac-10, ranked No. 12 and positioning itself for an NCAA Tournament seed in the No. 2 range. This is a team in which every scholarship player has been treated for some sort of injury, some extremely serious and others of the nagging variety.
"It's mind-boggling," Howland said. "It's unbelievable. And yet, we keep bouncing back. Sometimes, the adversity makes you tougher. I just think we have a special group of young men who are great kids. There is good leadership within our team."
The Bruins lead Stanford and Cal by a game and face a critical stretch this week when they visit Washington State Thursday and Washington Saturday. Senior guard Cedric Bozeman will continue to play with torn cartilage in his left shoulder. Sophomore point guard Jordan Farmar is walking around campus in a boot to protect a sprained left ankle (the same ankle he has now sprained five times) and will be a game-time decision at WSU.