November 27, 1999
As a UCLA alum living in Chicago, I have curiously followed the seemingly ongoing strained relationship between Steve Lavin and Bruin faithful from afar. Having had the opportunity to read Bill Plaschke's article [Nov. 18], I am beginning to understand why Bruin faithful are concerned. The last time I was in Los Angeles, Jaron Rush was AWOL. Lo and behold, I come to spend the Thanksgiving holidays with my parents one year later, and this time Jaron has an "excused absence" for another in-season jaunt to Kansas City.
January 25, 1997
The wonderful First Amendment! It allows Charles Chiccoa, a person completely devoid of knowledge about basketball or the teaching thereof, to express his foolish blather [Viewpoint, Jan. 18]. Chuckie, give Coach Lavin a fair chance. Even through your myopia, you will see a better effort and good results from these Bruins. MITCHELL GOLD Los Angeles There is more to Steve Lavin than his power haircut. The freshman coach, by being able to regroup his talented but depressed UCLA team, showed there is something underneath the best haircut L.A. has seen since Pat Riley's.
December 23, 2000
Only Steve Lavin would have the audacity to call a horribly played five-point squeaker over UC Irvine a positive step for the UCLA basketball team. If he continues to lower the bar for Bruin basketball we will all have to do the limbo to get into Pauley. TONY SIRACUSA Pasadena Memo to Earl Watson: Earl, Earl, Earl, Earl! Do me a favor. The next time you're in Pauley, take a look around, you may see a banner or two. The last time I checked, they don't have USC written on them, they read UCLA.
March 16, 2002
By now it's a well-known fact that large numbers of UCLA fans have taken to rooting against their beloved Bruins on the quite sensible principle that six or seven years of Steve Lavin is preferable to--yikes!--25 years. Imagine having to watch Lavin-ball in Pauley Pavilion in 2020! Imagine the horror of having to listen to another 20 years of Lav's appalling gibberish in that jackhammer voice. But the true author of the decline and fall of the only two Bruin sports that matter is Pete Dalis.
February 22, 1997
With UCLA's success in Arizona last weekend, I can't shake the feeling that the administration has hired the basketball equivalent of Terry Donahue. Like Donahue, Steve Lavin looks like a coach, says the right things, works hard, works for the right price, is young enough to coach for 20 years before facing burnout, and began his career with an upset victory in Arizona. Donahue-like success (an occasional good year weighed against overall mediocrity) is not likely to be tolerated by the alumni, however.
December 28, 1996
One wonders who is coaching fundamentals these days to the obviously overrated, over-hyped future NBA golden boys at UCLA, given the inordinate turnovers, lack of focus and undisciplined style of play all on painful display this season. Cameron Dollar is not only "the one" [Dec. 19], but also the "zero"--equal to the number of points he scored against Illinois. Was it only last year that UCLA had pride, intensity and a real program in place? SAM BLEVINS Westlake Village I read with interest the recent NCAA violations handed down to the basketball programs of Louisville and Arkansas.