There are number of posters on BRO premium who have been on a frenzy arguing how DeWayne Walker would be a good head coach for UCLA. Tracy Pierson, who runs the site is also indicating that he thinks Walker is head coaching material.
Yes, we said turned a corner. We had been saying all year long that UCLA was approaching that crossroad, and you can easily make a case that this game could be the corner-turner.
Helping the UCLA football bus around the bend would be a commitment from quarterback Ben Olson , of course. What would also propel it would be if UCLA, as a result of this game, made in-roads with elite prospects like linebacker Ryan Reynolds and defensive end Raymond Henderson, who were both on their official visits and milling around, smiling, as the UCLA band played the fight song outside of the locker room after the game. Reynolds looked good wearing his UCLA jacket.
While you don't want a coach to sound happy after a loss, you could see in his post-game press conference that the biggest task for Karl Dorrell was containing his elation about the game. He knows that this game was something he can definitely build on, and sell to recruits. He's been telling recruits that his program is getting there, and now he has tangible proof of it.
Standing on the field after the game, yes, it was disappointing. USC fans, of course, were being their classless selves, throwing oranges on the field, the USC rooting section punctuating their band's Fleetwood Mac theme of "Tusk" by chanting "U-C-L-A sucks!" But standing on that field, in the midst of it, I have to say, the loss felt quite a bit differently than the last two years, and all the bitter losses to USC in the past. It was a feeling that many have been telling me since yesterday they felt, too. It's a feeling of great hope, and just not baseless hope, but one based on tangible accomplishment. It wasn't only that it looked like UCLA was starting to bridge the gap in talent on the field, but it had made great strides in attitude, heart and toughness. The teams from the last two seasons folded in those games, when faced with a superior USC team. Those teams would have probably folded after the first couple of minutes of this game, when Bush broke off his first touchdown run. But this team, with the heart it's shown, out-played the Trojans for the rest of the game. So, it's a feeling based on having the beginnings of a football program that the UCLA community can be quite proud of. It's now having a football staff that UCLA fans can truly respect - that the players and everyone in the athletic department respects -- that are trying to do things the right way. In the seven years since I've been covering the football program I've never respected the players on any UCLA team as much as I do this year's team. They are, by far, the classiest and most dedicated group of players UCLA has seen in many years. And you have to give a great deal of credit to Dorrell and his coaching staff, for establishing the right type of atmosphere and attitude within the program.
Yes, UCLA lost to USC. But in so many ways, it felt differently than any other loss in recent memory to the Trojans. Even if you're a USC fan (and probably just a bandwagon jumper as so many of their fans are), you'd have to admit that it was quite evident there was a different aura to the UCLA team this year. It was an aura of a program going in the right direction, doing things the right way (And actually, that's something USC fans might not recognize). Really, if UCLA had actually scored in the last minute yesterday and beaten USC, what would have been the most significant impact? The biggest impact would have been to USC, not to UCLA. Yes, UCLA's record would be 7-4 rather than 6-5, but that, right now, doesn't seem that significant. In losing the way it did, UCLA played its game well enough to possibly still receive the impact it needed.
This might sound completely nutty, but it's now a good time to be a UCLA fan. For the first time in a very long time you have the football and basketball programs going in the right direction -- with coaching staffs that can be respected. If you're a Crank, you should take a little time off from the Crankiness and put on the Blue-colored glasses. Come on, it feels good. At least for just a moment.
At least until the bowl game.
But for now, everything looks good with that Blue tinge, doesn't it? Wearing the Blue glasses that game made you put on, it's now easy to see a future where Dorrell's teams steadily improve and become a major player in college football. If UCLA were a stock, it'd be one with a BUY on it. And it's not too hard to envision a college football world, in a few years, where Norm Chow and even Pete Carroll have moved on from USC, and UCLA, under Dorrell, has become a college football power. That, just a couple months ago, wasn't possible to envision.
So, while many don't put much stock in moral victories, this was one moral victory, UCLA fans, you should put stock in. While it went down in the record books as a loss, in the future it very well could be remembered in the minds and hearts of UCLA fans as a true victory.You can read that whole epic here (its a free article).
So the same guys who were celebrating a "true moral victory" putting their stocks in Dorrell regime are now putting their stocks in DeWayne Walker arguing that he will be legitimate option for next UCLA football coach.
Go figure. Somethings never change.