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Bruin Bites: Soccer Notes, Cantlay Sizzles, and Football Predictions

UCLA Soccer, Chandler Hoffman
UCLA Soccer, Chandler Hoffman

Happy Father's Day Bruins Nation!  It's another sunny California Sunday, so soak it in before we get back to work tomorrow.  Since we last checked in, we've taken note of the serious drop in Morgan Center's operating revenue and ticket sales, Nestor laid out his expectations for how the football team should compete, Arron Afflalo continues to work harder during the off-season, Adidas continues to treat UCLA as a second-class citizen, and we celebrated BN's sixth birthday by announcing the Bruins Nation scholarship program.

It's been a busy few days, but if you still need your fix of all things UCLA, here's your bits and pieces of news from around the UCLA-iverse:

  • Starting with our men's soccer program, Coach Jorge Salcedo added two new transfers to his roster this off-season, bringing Ryan Lee from Ohio State and Victor Munoz from Iona.  Fortunately, because the Bruins will return the starting line-up from last year's NCAA quarterfinal squad, Lee and Munoz will provide some needed depth and versatility in the midfield.
  • Sticking with soccer news, soon-to-be junior Chandler Hoffman was named the USL Premier Development League's player of the week after putting away five goals in three matches for Orange County Blue Star.  For those of you not following the squad, the USL-PDL is an amateur league that many NCAA players participate in during the off-season.  Think of it like the Cape Cod League (hey, it's not a perfect analogy, but you get what I'm saying).  Very exciting to see a Bruin striker keeping in top form: UCLA will need Hoffman to continue to score if they want to make repeat and build on last year's successes.
  • ESPN Insider writers Jason Churchill and Keith Law (the portion not behind a subscription firewall) have named UCLA's Trevor Bauer as the most likely in his draft class to reach the Big Show first.  In short, with the kind of stuff we saw from Trevor during his UCLA career, don't be surprised to see him suiting up for the Diamondbacks before long.
  • Sticking with draft-related notes, we'll switch over to the upcoming NBA draft.  Celtics' blog Green Street has a draft profile of Malcolm Lee, and it's a mixed review at best.  While they note Malcolm passes the "eye test" as a combo guard and "could" develop into an effective slasher, they question Lee's decision-making and ability to match up with NBA off-guards.  Perhaps sticking around for another season would have been wise.  Certainly, Howland thought so.
  • One Bruin who could successfully turn pro now if they wanted to is golf sensation Patrick Cantlay, who has been on a tear at the U.S. Open. Despite out-performing many of the guys who get a check (including the best score, 30, on the back nine, two better than Rory McIllroy's 32), Cantlay is making news for not just his golf game but for his desire to be a true Bruin and get his degree at UCLA.
  • Turning to football, the Moscow-Pullman Daily News has ranked UCLA as having the third-best rushing attack in the Pac-12.  Despite the presence of an elite running back (JetSki Franklin) and solid depth (Derrick Coleman, Jordon James, and Malcolm Jones), the Daily News is quick to note that it may all be a moot point if UCLA can't get it's offensive line and QB situations squared away by the fall, causing them to fall one spot (behind only Washington and Oregon).
  • That prediction might be generous, at least according to the predictions at Athlon Sports, who have predicted the Bruins will finish fifth in the Pac-12 South, with a 2-7 conference record and a 4-8 overall record.  With the major question marks at QB, injuries that always seem to plague our offensive line, and some questions about our linebacker corps, a 4-8 finish wouldn't be outside the realm of possibility.  If that happens, expect full regime change in Westwood.
  • Finally, in Rose Bowl related news, the victim of the UCLA-U$C game stabbing has filed a civil lawsuit against the City of Pasadena for negligence (inadequate security) leading to his injuries.  The story goes on to note that, thanks to uber-a**hole Anthony Cisneros (currently facing felony attempted murder charges) and his idiot family and friends, the City of Pasadena is considering a total alcohol ban for tailgating at the Rose Bowl.  Obviously, this would be a major blow to the tailgating activities of thousands of Bruins, both now and in the future.

With that, those are your Bruin Bites for this sunny Father's Day Sunday.  Fire away with your thoughts.