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Discernible progress - in football?

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So it is pretty obvious to everyone by now Howland has more than earned his pay raise, but what about Dorrell? Just like Howland Dorrell recently got a pay raise (not as much as Coach Howland though) boosting his salary to almost a million dollars a year? Of course, some fans had despondent reaction, possibly perceiving this pay raise as a contract extension for 5 more years. That's not the case. As I have mentioned a couple of times already, there's no need to get too worked up over this story as if this means Dorrell will be here for 5 more years. Dorrell already had a 6 year rollover agreement in place extending to the 2010 season. He gets the raise to $850,000 for the same six year roll over contract that he signed back in 2004. And why did UCLA give him the raise (less than Coach Howland) in his rollover contact? Well, the program wanted to project an image of stability on the recruiting front. We heard the same "extension" nonsense during Lavin era too. In other words if he doesn't beat SC and win 9 games this will not slow down all the speculation about his short/long term viability in Westwood. This story about a pay raise is a PR move on the part of UCLA.

But the question people should be asking is exactly what did Dorrell do to deserve a pay raise boosting his salary to almost million bucks a year? One would assume that Dorrell got this raise because he won the Pac-10, went to the Rose Bowl, and beat SC at least once in his first three years. Right? Dorrell didn't accomplish any of those goals, and now has a team which none of the national experts consider worthy of being pre-season top-3 in the Pac-10.

So exactly what did Dorrell do to merit the pay raise? Did he show discernible progress in recruiting these past three years? Not really. As I detailed a few weeks ago, under Dorrell a huge talent gap is steadily emerging not just against USC, but we are also falling behind Cal. To make matters worse, you continue to read posts like this (which no one has been able to rebut/dispute effectively) showing the remarkable contrast between Dorrell's UCLA football program and the one run by Peter Carroll across town:

Let me begin this post by mentioning that I am a lifelong UCLA football fan, and a high school coach of a couple prospects (Moore League school) being recruited by both schools. I will post this on both message boards.

This Summer I worked, as a position coach at both the USC and UCLA high school football camps, I noticed dramatic differences in the way each school runs their programs.

At UCLA, some positives were the low-key, easy access style of the head coach, Karl Dorrell, and his assistants, they were easy to talk to and were generally nice guys. However, their practices were casual and nonchalant, the kids were not encouraged to get emotional and the college coaches were almost void of energy. It was a full-padded camp, yet the kids were chastised for being too aggressive and to take it easy on one another (what?). I must say I was particularly disappointed in the lack of enthusiasm from certain defensive position coaches on the college staff. I was so disenchanted that I left the camp two days early and declined pay.

The week earlier I was at USC, and from the very beginning (at the coaches meeting) we were ordered to be FIRED UP and "Coach like USC coaches coach". Pete Carroll was pushing me (a high school coach) to keep coaching and be very active. I worked with Pat Ruehl (O-line), his energy and pace demanded the kids attention --he also showed me some techniques to take back to my school. This camp was without pads, but you couldn't tell --drills between the offensive line and defensive line were full speed, full emotional, and full contact (we ran the same drill at UCLA, with pads, and it was a total dud). The coaching staff at USC worked to coach the little things and kept the environment high energy and intense (especially coach Holt).

The difference between the two camps and two staffs are night-and-day. UCLA doesn't have a reputation of being soft because of the players they recruit, its because of the way they are halfhazardly coached. From the day you step on campus at 'SC you are trained and expected to be almost MARINE-like (Carroll had an ex-Marine give a pep talk to the coaching staff) in intensity.

I must admit, as a Bruin fan I was extremely disappointed that my favorite team's school was not only talent but environmentally so inferior to our hated rivals. Well, at least the UCLA campus looked better
Now, all of us have our reservations about how Peter Carroll manages his scandal tainted USC program. But one factor none of us can really dispute is that PC is kicking Dorrell's ass. PC is kicking KD in the teeth and stomping on him when it comes to generating enthusiasm and emotion on and off the field. PC gives off a genuine perception that he loves USC. He believes in its tradition. He soaks it all in, and the Trojans eat it up. There is nothing wrong with that no matter how much it all drives us up the wall. We can see the same thing happening in Notre Dame now. Frankly, we are seeing it in hoops. We constantly read about how Howland loves being a Bruin. How he thinks this is the greatest university in the world and how he never shies away from high expectations. You never hear him whining about pressure. Alums, students, fans feed off it and recruits sense that positive energy. You see that from coaches like Carroll (who is still shady), Weiss, and Stoops of the world. And we are now seeing happening with Howland in UCLA hoops.

And BTW this is not the first time we have read about UCLA football coaches not being tenacious on the recruiting circuit. Don't forget this gem from May of 2005:
My son is a sophomore at Oaks Christian High School. He is close friends with the two very highly-touted recruits Jimmy Clausen and Marc Tyler. In fact, Clausen has been over at my house to work on a European history project with my son. Real nice kid. My son told me that both Clausen and Tyler have told him that Duhrell is no longer recruiting them aggressively after learning of their high interest in Pom Pom and SUC. I'm guessing that Duhrell is satisfied with Olson, Rashaan, and Cowan for the future. Apparently, Clausen and Tyler still get general mass mailings once in a while but that's it. After KD promoted Bieniemy to recruiting coordinator, Clausen and Tyler started getting calls from EB (no surprise there, he's the only one who does any work), but they are so ticked off about the lack of interest from Duhrell that they told EB to basically f off. Clausen also wondered why EB was the one making the contact, not his potential QB coach Svoboda. From what I hear, the day after Sarkisian returned to SUC, one of his first calls was to Clausen.

It's going to be a real shame if we lose both of these kids to SUC. I've seen both at Oaks football games and they are unreal. If we lose them, the blame has to go on KD. Just another example of KD afraid to go up against the Trojans.
We all know how that turned out. Tyler is a Trojan and Clausen is an Irish.

So tell me again exactly what has Dorrell has done to justify that raise to make him a millionaire football coach? Don't tell me it's because we get to have newly designed road uniforms!:



Yeap this will do it! This will help us beat ND!

Although to be fair apparently the decision was made by ADIDAS (guess those guys are looking for ways to boost jersey sells of a team that is currently the Clippers of Southern California's college football scene), but still this reminds me too much of screwing around with our basketball uniforms during the Lavin era.

Anyways, I'd be interested in hearing honest, cogent arguments backed up by facts that shows discernible progress in football, you know the kind of discernible progress we are seeing in UCLA basketball (which got a new coach the same year Dorrell arrived in Westwood).

GO BRUINS.