Since we have a busy day ahead of us, I will make this game day edition of Bruin Bites short and sweet. If anyone was wondering how upset UCLA alums are with the leadership of our athletic program under Chianti Dan, he or she needs to check out the following datapoint about today's bowl game:
UCLA was required by the bowl to purchase 11,000 tickets across four price points at a total cost of $550,000. The university sold 3,000 tickets. Of the remaining tickets the school gave each player six tickets, the maximum allowed under NCAA rules, for family members. Bruin coaches and staff also received six tickets. The university also donated 5,000 tickets to the needy and military families in the Bay Area.
According to BruinWorks there are 36,000 Bruin alums in the San Francisco Bay Area. The actual number is much higher because not everyone is registered in that network. These are folks who voluntarily registered with BruinWorks. So there are thousands of other Bruin alums who are not accounted for in that number. Factor in the family and friend network of those alums and then you can understand how utterly pathetic that 3,000 number is.
This is a total rejection of Chianti Dan from the UCLA alums in Bay Area and it's another resounding message that Gene Block needs to take into account in addition to thousands of emails from alums which includes messages of withholding countless donations. Chianti Dan needs to go.
More after the jump.
There is not really any other newsworthy items to be gleaned from local papers today if you want to get a preview of today's game. But just for the sake of keeping note here are the bullets:
- As noted by KiwiBruin in the fanshot section looks like Bruins may have gotten a transfer from Florida. Former 4 star CB Johsua Shaw from Palmdale seems like a nice get. He seems like a very versatile athlete from his high school highlight video. Welcome to Westwood Joshua.
- As for the game Jon Gold from the Daily News has a nice macro preview. I like Gold's perspective on it detailing despite all the catcalls from around the country around this game, it will not be a "laughing matter" for our players. "The way we have practiced has been different," noted Kevin Prince, adding "the way we're coached is different. Being able to adjust to that and get our focus on to this game has been tough, but I think we've done it."
- Today's game is going to serve as a try out for our players to impress the Jim Mora Coaching regime. Dantone Jones told Chris Foster, "When game time comes, we're going to be ready to compete," understanding "first impression is everything," and that he and his team-mates will "only get one shot at a first impression." Hopefully that means Jones has given up any delusions of wanting to go pro after this season.
- Chris Foster also attempted to "examine the game's issues and matchups" here. You are not going to learn anything from Foster's mimboish writing (see what I did there Chris, we know you are reading not just our posts but also trolling in our comment threads) unless you want to read up on more snarks and easy cheap shots against the Bruins.
- Speaking of snarks and cheapshots, Scott Reid from the OC Register has this preview of the game. Reid felt the need to write for the 200th time about how this is OMGZ the worst bowl game ever and how the Bruins had to petition to become bowl eligible (what a fresh storyline!). Reid then packaged in another reference to over the wall story (yeah we haven't heard enough of that apparently) by letting us know at the end of this story that if "Bruin players weighing a similar exit Saturday might want to reconsider. On the other the AT&T wall awaits a place more chilling than even an icy Mora glare: McCovey Cove." That is some creative, original writing!
I don't know why we bother going through these game day notes but hey we all have to get our fix I guess. As I said yesterday, as difficult this year has been, it'd be nice if we get to end this football season on a good note. I think the Bruins are going to be clear underdogs today given the defense of Illinois. However, if we get an inspired effort from our D, creating some turnovers and get Mike Johnson to open up our offense with some creative and aggressive play calling, we'd start of the next chapter in UCLA football on a good note.
Let's hope the blue and gold can make it happen. The game thread will go up around 12:00 pm PST. We will also have a pre-game one before it. Happy New Year to everyone on BN.