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March 30, 2013 | By Chris Foster, This post has been updated. See the note below for details.
Steve Alford has been hired as UCLA's basketball coach, the university announced Saturday morning. Alford, 48, spent the last six seasons at New Mexico, compiling a 155-52 record. He replaces Ben Howland, who was fired after going 25-10 and winning the Pac-12 Conference regular-season championship. Alford has agreed to a seven-year deal worth $2.5 million a year, according to a person familiar with the hire who was not authorized to speak publicly about it. [Updated 11:36 a.m. March 30: UCLA officials later confirmed Alford had agreed to a seven-year contract worth $18.2 million, including a $200,000 signing bonus.
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March 28, 2014 | By Chris Foster
Moving the UCLA basketball program forward is going to be tricky. The Bruins had a good season, reaching an NCAA regional semifinal for the first time since 2008 and pushing top-ranked Florida to the final minutes. For two days in Memphis - pregame and postgame - Coach Steve Alford talked about the "foundation" that was built. Less than 24 hours later, though, that foundation already had a crack. Freshman guard Zach LaVine will declare for the NBA draft, his family said Friday.
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September 25, 2013 | By Eric Sondheimer
 A free coaches' clinic will be held on Tuesday from 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Hope International University, and among the four college coaches scheduled to speak are first-year coaches Steve Alford of UCLA and Andy Enfield of USC. Alford is on at 8 p.m. and Enfield speaks at 6 p.m. Also at the clinic are Arizona Coach Sean Miller (5 p.m.) and Duke assistant Steve Wojciechowski (7 p.m.). Coaches should RSVP at Trigonis30@aol.com. Eric.sondheimer@latimes.com  
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March 28, 2014
Not sure which game Bill Plaschke was watching when he wrote such glowing compliments of UCLA's Sweet 16 performance against Florida. Defense wins games in the tournament, and the Bruins' defense, absent for much of the season, was AWOL as Florida nailed jump shot after jump shot. But at least Steve Alford made great halftime adjustments .... oh, wait. UCLA lost to a less-talented, better-prepared, better-coached team. But they did beat the 12th and 13th seeds to get there. Another Steve-16 for UCLA ... just with a different Steve.
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July 12, 2013 | By Bill Dwyre
The recent heated discussion over the merits of Steve Alford's salary to coach basketball at UCLA included a little analysis from reader Scott Ninegar. John Wooden was paid $6,000 to coach the Bruins in 1948, his first season at UCLA. In today's dollars, Ninegar calculated, Wooden's $6,000 would be $57,994 when adjusted for inflation. Wooden's final salary in the 1975 season, when he won his 10th NCAA title, was $40,500. Ninegar calculated that would now be $175,358. Alford's salary is $2.6 million a year for seven years.  Ninegar has that at 14.8 times what Wooden's $175,358 would have been after adjusting for inflation.
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March 30, 2013 | By Chris Dufresne
What a greasy, slimy business. Working on an oil rig? Well, that too, but I was thinking of college athletics. To quote from an old Broadway tune, "What kind of fool am I?" Eleven days ago I thought New Mexico Coach Steve Alford was the perfect candidate for the UCLA coaching vacancy. It was the Wednesday I sat in Salt Lake City typing those words for a story in advance of the subregional that featured several coaching candidates I thought UCLA and USC should consider.
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October 28, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
Steve Alford may have a goose bump or 20 on Wednesday when he walks onto the court at Pauley Pavilion for his first official game as head coach of the UCLA Bruins. Alford's been in emotional situations before. He used to routinely play in front of crowds of 10,000 in high school in Indiana and led the Indiana Hoosiers to the 1987 NCAA national championship when he scored 23 points against Syracuse. Oh, and there was an Olympic gold medal for Alford in 1984 when his college coach, Bob Knight, chose the 19-year-old sophomore for the team.
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April 2, 2013 | T.J. Simers
I saw the guy working on TV, his team surprising folks in the NCAA tournament, but honestly I don't even know his first name now that he has become USC's basketball coach. But he has to be more interesting and exciting than the dolt introduced as UCLA basketball coach Tuesday. It's pretty well understood that whoever coaches UCLA basketball is a dead man walking, it being only a matter of time before the alumni agree he'll never be another John Wooden. But this might be the first time UCLA actually hired a dead man. Yeesh, the John Wooden statue outside of Pauley had more life to it than Steve Alford, the robot who sputtered nonstop platitudes while never once answering a question directly.
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March 30, 2013 | By T.J. Simers
Funny story the way I hear it. Once UCLA failed to land Virginia Commonwealth Coach Shaka Smart and Butler's Brad Stevens, Athletic Director Dan Guerrero talked to Phil Jackson's representative. Guerrero didn't want Jackson as coach, but rather to have him lead the search for a new UCLA basketball coach. Jackson was agreeable. Guerrero talked to Jackson's agent about having a news conference to announce Jackson was onboard. Jackson's agent told Guerrero what it would cost to hire him as consultant.
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January 3, 1988 | JIM SLATER, United Press International
Steve Alford, an Indiana high school and college basketball hero, has found patience the most difficult lesson of his first NBA season. "The mental adjustment was difficult because I was playing almost all the time in college and high school," Alford said. "Now, for the first time in my career, I'm having to watch to learn. The neat thing is, it's at the ultimate level."
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March 27, 2014 | Bill Plaschke
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - There were 10 minutes remaining in what would have been the maddest March moment of all. UCLA trailed top-seeded Florida by just one point. The streaking, upstart Bruins had the veteran Gators reeling, gasping, wondering. Steve Alford's kids were on the verge of stunning their way through South Regional semifinals and on to previously unimaginable greatness. "We really felt like were on the verge of taking the lead," said Norman Powell. "The energy was shifting.
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March 26, 2014 | By Chris Foster
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Florida defeated UCLA in the 2011 NCAA tournament, eliminating the Bruins in the second round. Still, it was a Sweet 16 moment for current UCLA freshman guard Bryce Alford - his birthday was a couple of months earlier. "I just got my driver's license," Alford recalled. "I was driving. " To a high school kid from New Mexico, UCLA's loss was far from monumental. "I probably watched the game, or saw the score, whatever," Alford said. "It didn't have a whole lot of importance to me. " It's said that those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it. But does that apply to basketball?
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March 22, 2014 | By Chris Foster
SAN DIEGO - Florida is still out there. This is where a young man's mind could wander. UCLA players have been snared in this trap before. The fourth-seeded Bruins are so close to Memphis that they can almost smell the cheeseburgers cooking at Graceland. All that stands in their way of a shot at top-ranked Florida in the NCAA South Regional semifinals is little ol' Stephen F. Austin. The TSA at LAX seems more of a travel obstacle than SFA. The Bruins have 100 NCAA tournament victories.
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March 20, 2014 | Bill Plaschke
SAN DIEGO - He's been on the job nearly a full calendar year, leading a young basketball team to a conference tournament championship while filling a dormant program with energy and hope. Yet Steve Alford's career as UCLA basketball coach doesn't officially begin until right now. Friday night, Viejas Arena, NCAA tournament, opening game, Tulsa waiting. Despair waiting, relief waiting, ghosts waiting. "This is when the UCLA coaching hot seat gets really hot," said Tracy Murray, former Bruins star and current team radio analyst.
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March 15, 2014 | Bill Plaschke
LAS VEGAS - They are skidding into the Madness on their bellies, Travis Wear diving and sliding and fighting for a loose ball he will own forever. They are flying into the Madness on their toes, Kyle Anderson leaning and lifting and undressing one of the nation's top defenses down to their scowls. But mostly, UCLA is headed into the Madness exactly as Jordan Adams pushed it there Saturday with a last-minute, off-balance three-pointer that gave the Bruins a 75-71 upset of fourth-ranked Arizona in the Pac-12 championship game.
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March 13, 2014 | Bill Plaschke
LAS VEGAS -- There's been a certain strain on the young faces of recent UCLA basketball teams during this time of year, a visible look of weariness and distraction, the open scars of a long season under a heavy hand. Call it Ben Howland's Sighs of March. All of which made it so startling to see the Bruins storming through Las Vegas early Thursday night hitting every 16, letting everything ride, going all in on every hand with swaggers and smiles. Welcome to Steve Alford's Wilds of March?
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March 30, 2013 | Bill Plaschke
He has a rock-star image with an opening-act resume. He was once Hoosiers, but, in the last decade, Gene Hackman has led the exact same number of teams to the Sweet 16. He prides himself on playing Ivy League-smart basketball, which was pretty cool until a couple of weeks ago when his team was knocked out of the NCAA tournament in the first round by, um, Harvard. Of course, regarding Saturday's hiring of Steve Alford as the UCLA basketball coach, there is only one question that matters.
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March 7, 2014 | By Chris Foster
SPOKANE, Wash. -- UCLA players might want to write this down. Game time is 8 p.m. on Saturday. The reason for the reminder is that the Bruins need a wakeup call most nights. They have trailed at halftime in seven of their last 10 games, including the last four. It has caused some second-half scrambles, such as Thursday's 91-82 victory over Washington. Players have identified first-half doldrums as a reason for problems on the road in conference play. UCLA has lost the second game of its three previous two-game trips in Pac-12 play.
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March 5, 2014 | By Chris Foster
UCLA's basketball team won the Pac-12 Conference regular-season championship last season and Coach Ben Howland was fired. With two games left in this conference regular season, the Bruins already know they will not repeat as champions, yet all is well. The change from Howland to Steve Alford has been a mostly lateral move. Entirely horizontal, in fact, according to the records. UCLA last season had a 22-7 record at this stage. As the Bruins prepare to play at Washington on Thursday and Washington State on Saturday in their final two games before this year's conference tournament, their record is … 22-7.
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