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Let Optimism Reign

It's here. Training camp starts today and finally we have UCLA notes in all the major Southern California papers even including the LA Times. The theme of the day seems to be how difficult it is to get all the new coaching staff in sync even though Dorrell has had almost half a year and the entire spring practice to get it done.:

When UCLA opens training camp today fourth-year coach Karl Dorrell doesn't expect everything will run smoothly. Perhaps there will be some confusion in the secondary, communication issues within the offense.

But it won't be all with the players. Dorrell said his overhauled coaching staff, which includes six new assistants and three holdovers in different roles than in 2005, will take time gaining cohesion and continuity in training camp.

"I think it's harder than putting in an offense," Dorrell said. "You have a melting pot of coaches with so many different backgrounds. They've been doing things certain ways. You've got to mold it into this style here. I think that's hard."
Coaching is "hard" work? Who knew?

Luckily for UCLA, our players are not making excuses like the head coach. Junior Taylor in the LA Times:
Because UCLA's Spaulding Field was scheduled to be renovated in late March, the Bruins began spring practice under their revamped coaching staff less than two months after the Sun Bowl, the earliest start among Pac-10 schools.

The quick turnaround helped the players and new coaches get to know each other better.

"They came in and we haven't skipped a beat," Taylor said. "Each coach came in and established himself right away. Everything just clicked.

"As a team, we were looking to see who would fill the void left by Cable and Bieniemy, not just them as coaches but also their personalities. I think we have everything and more with this new staff."
I had to lol reading this in the Times report on new OL coach Jim Colletto:
UCLA can only hope that this latest staff shake-up is as successful as when Dorrell replaced offensive coordinator Steve Axman with Cable in 2004. Under Axman, the Bruins ranked 110th out of 117 I-A schools in total offense. Last season under Cable, the Bruins had the nation's seventh-highest scoring attack.

That's why Dorrell's hire of Colletto was so important. With 11 years of experience as a college head coach and a Super Bowl ring as line coach for the Baltimore Ravens in 2000, Colletto provides a veteran presence who knows how to win
Yeah Colleto was such a "winner" at Baltimore that the Ravens fired him, and he sure left a great impression at South Bend when he was coaching the ND offense. From our chat with BGS:
Ahh, Jim Colletto.  One of the Irish faithful's favorite whipping boys during Bullet Bob's reign of error.  We made fun of him while he was facing off against us at Purdue and then -- doh! -- he became our offensive coordinator.  To say his offenses were inept and stupefying would be a massive understatement.  But he actually has a fair reputation as a line coach, so as long as Dorrell keeps him out of the offensive war room you should see some benefit there.
Anyways we will hope for the best and hope that Dorrell has Colletto just focused on OL (even though he got fired from his last gig with the same job description) and take Dorrell's at his word for now that he is working "hard" to come up with a "productive" season whatever that means. Let optimism reign!

On the other side of the ball OC Register's Robert Kuwada has a report on the new "attitude" and "focus" for Bruin defense:
The Bruins' mind-set and attitude were more of a focus - stoking, not salving, a defensive unit that often was just along for the ride during an improbable 10-2 season that included stirring comebacks and victories in which they allowed 40 points to Cal, 41 at Washington State, 35 to Arizona State and 38 to Northwestern in the Sun Bowl.

And when UCLA opens its fall practices today, Coach Karl Dorrell, Walker and the defensive staff are likely to find that much at least stuck. Bolstered by the promise of a more aggressive approach, the Bruins' defense is looking forward rather than back.

"The attitude has really changed for our defense as a whole, our mentality has changed," said junior Trey Brown, a returning starter at left cornerback.
Aaah the feel good vibes of change in "attitude," the stories of being a more "focused" defense. Haven't we heard all of that before during the first year of Nick Alliotti, Phil Snow, Larry Kerr or whoever came in to fix this defense since Rocky Long left Westwood. None of this BS is going to matter if the team follows the "10 win" season by meeting the reasonable expectations for this season.

Let optimism reign.