Unfortunately, it's that time of the week again: it's Sunday and we're closing in on another work week. On the other hand, we're now less than one week away from our UCLA Bruins kicking off the 2011 football season against the Houston Cougars. Since we last checked in on Thursday, on the football front, we reviewed football practices on Wednesday and Thursday, and took note of Brett Hundley's show-stealing performance at UCLA's closed Rose Bowl scrimmage on Friday. We also highlighted an outstanding analysis of the veer (HT 03rdn9), clowned Rivals for underrating UCLA's recruiting rankings, put out the BN frontpage crew's predictions for the upcoming Pac-12 football season, and took a serious note to wish all Bruins in the path of Hurricane Irene good luck and to stay safe.
So, with that, let's turn to the bits and pieces of news from around the UCLA-iverse to close out the weekend:
- Let's start with a baseball update. Former UCLA standout second baseman Tyler Rahmatulla is currently tearing it up for the Johnson City Cardinals, the St. Louis Cardinals' rookie league outfit. Tyler currently has a .325 batting average and leads the Appalachian League with 25 doubles. Despite a sudden end (injuries and academic issues) to his college career, Tyler seems to still be in stride. Let's keep our fingers crossed that we'll see Rahmatulla in Busch Stadium in a few years.
- The Daily News has a profile on former UCLA All-American volleyball legend Mike O'Hara and his efforts to spread the popularity of volleyball across the globe, reporting on O'Hara's recent voyage to Qatar to deliver a speech to various Middle Eastern dignitaries on the important of sporting culture.
- Speaking of Bruin profiles, the Whittier Daily News caught up with UCLA middle linebacker Patrick Larimore, who discussed his desire to get back to hitting opposing players after suffering a season-ending shoulder injury against Oregon. If the kid can stay healthy, I really like the odds of our defense playing tough, stifling, aggressive defense: he's showing all the attributes you'd want in a MLB, which is in essence, the defensive QB. With a healthy, fired-up Larimore, Clark Lea and Joe Tresey have a potent weapon.
- In other football defensive news, on Thursday, defensive tackle Brandon Willis was on campus to meet with Neuheisel. While it's sad that Willis has lost so much time because of his back-and-forth voyages between Chapel Hill and Westwood, it's great to have a talent like him back in the fold.
- Switching back to Bruin profiles, the San Bernardino Sun profiled the next great UCLA safety, Dietrich Riley. Riley talks about his role last season, the expanded role he looks forward to having in this year's defensive scheme alongside Tony Dye, and the work he knows he needs to put in to achieve his goals.
- Patrick Cantlay continues to light it up during the off-season, reaching the finals of the U.S. Amateur Championship, where he'll face former SMU stand-out Kelly Kraft. Cantlay defeated Jordan Russell (Texas A&M) in the semi-final after beating England's Tom Lewis and SMU's Max Buckley in the prior rounds. Cantlay, the top-ranked amateur in the world, will be favored and continues to show he has a bright future, which bodes well for the Bruins in the coming year.
- In soccer news, the No. 2 ranked men's team fell to the top-ranked Louisville Cardinals, getting shut out 2-0 in Louisville. For a brief recap of the game, you can go here.
- The No. 15 ranked women's soccer team, on the other hand, had much better fortune, edging the Tennessee Lady Vols 2-1 thanks to a Sydney Leroux goal in the 85th minute. A slow first half led to Tennessee taking the lead in the 63rd minute, with the Bruins storming back in the last 10 minutes, scoring in the 80th and 85th minutes to seal the victory.
- Finally, in academic/technology news, UCLA engineers have developed a stretchable LED screen. While still in the rudimentary stages, the applications for this technology are endless, although for all of us the most immediate use that comes to mind is that soon we'll have smart phones that conveniently fit in our pocket, yet stretch out to a screen size similar to an iPad. Just another reason to be proud to be a Bruin.
Those are your bits and pieces of news and information from around the UCLA-iverse. Stick tight until we check in mid-week with Bruin Bites again. Fire away with your comments and thoughts in the open thread.