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#SFatPauley – Guerrero Officially Surrenders to Bruin Nation, Restores UCLA Students’ Sideline Seats at Pauley

A huge victory for UCLA students in BruinsNation, as athletic director Dan Guerrero officially caves to weeks of intense campaign to save students' sideline seats at Pauley.

On UCLA's official website:

Members of the Bruin Family:

I would like to take this opportunity to inform you that we will continue to have sideline floor seating for students when Pauley Pavilion reopens for the 2012-13 season. Students will occupy the floor level seats along the south sideline and floor level seats behind the west basket, which was originally announced in the summer of 2009, in addition to upper level seats behind the west basket. This configuration can be viewed at The Pauley Pavilion Virtual Venue site will be updated by June 1.

Over the past few months, Athletic Department staff had worked with student leadership groups regarding the design of a cohesive student section behind the basket adjacent to the visiting team bench. After receiving the support of various student leadership and student focus groups, we announced the shift in the student section on March 30.

Two weeks ago, the Undergraduate Student Association Council (USAC), one of the leadership groups with which we consulted, decided to solicit additional student feedback by adding an advisory question regarding student seating to the Undergraduate Student Elections ballot. We respected and supported that decision. The results of the election showed that a majority of the students would rather retain the sideline floor level seats than have the unified section behind the visiting team basket.

On April 29, I stated that we would discuss the election results with numerous leaders on USAC, along with leaders of the other groups that are involved with student spirit and we did so before announcing this decision. This is a great group of young people who are completely committed to creating the most energetic and exciting atmosphere for our teams. We are committed to working with these student leaders to do everything we can to increase student attendance and make the experience of "being there" a memorable one. That includes the creation of the Student Enhancement Committee, consisting of student leaders, including newly elected undergraduate President Emily Resnick, who is very enthusiastic about working with the spirit group leaders.

This process reconfirms the tremendous passion that exists on campus surrounding our intercollegiate athletic events. As I have said before, the importance of creating a home-court advantage cannot be understated. An energetic and supportive student section is essential to the success of any team and it is my hope that all of the students who have been involved in this process will support our student-athletes and continue the great tradition of Pauley Pavilion.

Go Bruins!

The surrender by Morgan Center to #SFatPauley campaign is now official.

We wish Dan was still not advancing the spin about working with student leadership to justify its previous bad decision. The members of student leadership did not make good decisions and it is unfortunate that they did not represent the desire of their fellow students.

Let's all take this moment to look forward though. As we said last Friday huge thanks alums such as MexiBruin, who worked tirelessly to save our students' sideline seats. We hope students like UCLA14 and BruinKid remain engaged and are given opportunities by UCLA athletics and their fellow students to stay plugged in to gin up interests in sports among students. They are our true leaders. It will be important for these students to show up in big numbers next season so that we do not see this kind of land grab move again.

As for Guerrero and his athletic department, they remain squarely on our hot seat. We will continue to watch them closely as we wait for 2010-11 2011-12 ootball and basketball seasons. As for tonight though give yourselves a hand. Our students big victory became official today.

Update (A): The LA Times and the Daily News blog about Guerrero's statement with no mention of the online effort. LA Times has the following quote from Coach Ben Howland:

"It's nice to see how passionate the students are about wanting to stay courtside and wanting to be involved and wanting to be heard," Coach Ben Howland said. "I appreciate how passionate our fans are."

We wish he had made those comments earlier, supported the effort and showed his "passion" for traditions of UCLA basketball. So be it.