Check out the latest weekly answers…
1) Do you think a coach like Howland is more affected by the 1 and done rule than some of the other coaches, because he takes longer to develop players (like 2-4 years)? – Warren
Partly, yes, but also because he is an old-school coach with old-school expectations and demands, and sometimes it leads to success (three straight final fours for the third time in NCAA history) and sometimes it leads to…whatever last year was.
2) It was cool talking to you at spring practice on Sunday. Is there any way Richard Brehaut takes over the starting spot from Prince? It looks like if he learns the offense more, he can contribute more to UCLA’s success. Do you think UCLA reaches 9 wins this season? – Killakick
Thanks, and that’s one of the unexpected bonuses of this job, being able to interact with fans at practice. If any of you guys see me there, feel free to say hello and talk UCLA. Regarding Brehaut, no way, no how. Like the kid, but miles away from Prince in many categories. Likewise, no way UCLA gets nine wins. I’ve heard them predicted at five from some places. I say seven, including bowl, and I’ll say seven until August and I’ve said seven since January.
3) Jon – how would you rate the offensive and defensive units compared to those of last year at this same point in time of spring practice? Better or worse and why? – RXBruin
Great question. The offense is light-years ahead of last year in terms of passing, but the running game needs a lot – a LOT – of work. With Maiava banged up, they’ve just seemed out of sync in the running game, not a lot of fluidity. I’m very intrigued by the Revolver, and I think given a few more months to iron out the kinks, the Bruins could flourish in it. Defensively, I’m not seeing enough consistency against the pass. I know UCLA has some exciting young receivers, but DBs have flat-out gotten beat some times, and that happened last year. Can’t happen again. Overall, the team is improved so far.
4) How is Donnovan Carter looking at DT and at this moment is he in the rotation? also please breakdown what we should expect from the SS position now that Ramirez is in the mix. Riley coming in, Stan Mckay up and coming, and Dye back with experience. – Jed and Gold
Carter looks better than expected, but needs to really bulk up more. As of now, I wouldn’t expect him to compete for major time. Ramirez, though, looks pretty good at safety, and I really would NOT be surprised to see him battle for the starting gig. McKay is a notch below Ramirez and Dye, though.
5) Jon, do you think the situation with Howland and Morgan/Moser only weakens his recruiting position with recruits. Especially since it appears that he was either unable to help him improve or he just gave up on Morgan? – BigDBruin
I think recruits look at things like that from afar, but those who have any interest in UCLA wouldn’t be swayed. The Morgan issues ran really deep, and I think Howland can explain the situation. However, yes, a random four-star recruit in the class of 2013 from Texas probably gets a more negative connotation than he had before.