Tidbits from Howland press conference

On Reeves Nelson and what prompted the suspension:
“I’m hoping it’s a teachable moment. his behavior on the bench Saturday was totally against what UCLA basketball and our program stands for. We’ll see. I met with him this morning after his first final and we will talk again later in the week.”

On Nelson being kicked off the team for good:
“That’s conjecture. we’ll wait and see what happens.”

On why he hasn’t reached the final straw:
“These kids aren’t professional athletes. They’re college kids. I try very hard to try to work with each kid. But as it affects and reflects the program and the team as a whole. There’s a point where enough is enough. A are we there at this point yet, we’ll see.”

On the situation being a distraction:
“There’s no question it has. It’s been very difficult. Definitely a distraction and we don’t need any distractions. It’s tough enough to come together without being distracted.”

On the players reaction to Nelson:
“It’s a tough situation for them. They’re very close with Reeves off the floor. On the floor, sometimes he will lose his cool or lose his head. It’s a different situation on and off the floor.”

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  • Anonymous

    Jon,

    When does Howland’s free pass for the 3 straight final 4s end? Ucla fans have endured some horrific losses in the last couple of years. That was the knock against against Lavin. Clearly this team lacks talent and coaching hasn’t been much better. Will Howland ever be held accountable or is it lifetime immunity. All Howland fans point to are excuses. Not playing at pauley, NBA losses, recruiting misses, new assistants, etc. What’s next? The weather? Food? Shoes? I’m sure there will be more excuses.

  • PeterUCLA

    Don’t compare Howland to Lavin, who never made it to even one Final 4 and who did less with the talent he had on the floor than Howland.

    Hey, at least we don’t have Kevin O’Neil! Forget about hotheaded players like Reeves…a hotheaded coach is worse.

    Nelson should get a 1 month suspension as the final warning. If he can’t turn things around, let him scrounge for minutes at a mid-major.

  • GeofF

    I agree Ben Howland needs to go. However boring and predictable Dan Guerrero loves Ben. He did not interview any other coaches back then.

  • Trojan 70

    At least we didn’t have Neuheisal, Dorrel, Toledo and on and on…

  • BruinInSeattle

    Howland is the best coach since Wooden. Not one of you has been around since Coach retired…I remember sitting in the stands as a kid, when my dad was announcing the games. Everyone expects an instant championship and all the kids and their personalities to be non-factors in triumph. It ain’t that easy…never was…even for Coach, who it took 16 years to win his first championship. Furthermore, the hallmark full court press was done at his assistant’s insistence. Cut Ben some slack. He is learning and working his butt off. As BN was saying just a few months ago, there is a certain something — an intangible — that Howland imparts into his players that make them a success in the NBA. Now, he has run into a little adversity and everyone wants to cut and run from the guy. So who would you replace him with? Seriously? And I’m not talking some guy who would never leave where he is at, like Coach K. Howland will be successful again. Be patient.

  • Anon

    you guys make it seem like final fours are easy to get when they’re not.

    Even Jim Harrick only made the final four once during that championship run. That was a magical year and I remember the excitement and seeing the Westwood riot afterwards. Fun times.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone quoting bruinsnation as a reference should have their sanity — or their manhood — questioned.

    GroupThinkAccordingToNestor is not critical thinking.

  • BruinInSeattle

    @Anonymous — I am not GroupThinking — do your own, dont just react to a reference. I read all the sites concerning UCLA, even BN. They may suffer from intolerance towards contrary to nestor ideas, but you can’t fault them for their passion and dedication to making UCLA the best academic and sports institution in America.

    My point was, a little as a few weeks ago, even zealots on BN were proclaiming Howland a God for infusing his players with basketball secret sauce…and now people are calling for regime change in Pauley, both here AND BN. That’s ridiculous. Why can’t people stick with something these days, see it through…instead of expect over night success.

    Ironically, by questioning my manhood you sound more like those who you condemn then I do.

  • Anonymous

    Final 4s are indeed difficult to achieve. But everyone is so quick to give all the credit to howland. He had NBA talent in those squads and a couple of those recruits were not high recruits. Love was great but howland does not typically get that level of talent. My point is that howland may be a decent coach and a decent but not great recruiter. What he did in those three years was unsustainable and you could argue that a better coach would have a title by now,especially the memphis year. I wouldn’t be surprised if howland never sees another final 4 again.

  • Anonymous

    Final 4s are indeed difficult to achieve. But everyone is so quick to give all the credit to howland. He had NBA talent in those squads and a couple of those recruits were not high recruits. Love was great but howland does not typically get that level of talent. My point is that howland may be a decent coach and a decent but not great recruiter. What he did in those three years was unsustainable and you could argue that a better coach would have a title by now,especially the memphis year. I wouldn’t be surprised if howland never sees another final 4 again.

  • Anonymous

    Speaking of Harrick. Yes, he won one even though most would agree that he was a mediocre coach. Can even argue that his team had less talent. How many has howland won with more talent.

  • Jim Rogers

    Nestor is a douche and I’m pretty sure he’s banned about 50% of bruin alums. Try to engage in some healthy debate and he will ban you too. Not to get too political but you’ll get a glimps of the type of censorship that would take place in the U.S. if you voted in the people he champions at his work. I would call him an embarrassment but that would be an embarrassment to the word embarrassing. :)

  • Lifelong Bruin Fan

    BruinInSeattle: I agree with you, Howland is the best coach at UCLA since Coach (although Brown and Bartow also deserve mention IMHO). That said, I do wish CBH would make some adjustments such as hiring an offensive minded assistant coach, playing more fastbreak basketball, and employing different defensive schemes such as a press and occasional zone. Also his pattern of calling timeouts can sometimes really take the air out of the game (and cost us at the end of ballgames). But with regard to disciplining players with attitude problems, I stand fully in his corner. (Just curious–is your father Dick Enberg? I have fond memories of him as our local LA broadcaster.)

    One silver lining to this situation is that kids who work hard like Stover and Lane will get more playing time. Lane in particular has a great attitude considering he was playing significant minutes last year. I am really pulling for him because he has talent, maybe just a little more confidence and swagger on the court would do him good. Needs to gain a little more muscle too–he seemed to have put on weight between his freshman and sophomore seasons, but not much difference this year from last.

  • BruinInSeattle

    @Lifelong — I fully agree about an offensive minded assistant and different defensive schemes…actually, agree with all of what you said.

    I don’t think I’ve ever heard a defense of Bartow, though! At the time, people really hated him! Might have been a good coach, though…I was pretty young at the time.

    My dad was Don Sawyer, voice of Pauley. Did a great job until coach H. forced him out — or that is my recollection, anyway. Not a fan of him. He had a lot of behavioral problems.

    UCLA did, however, make Enberg’s career.

    I’d love to see more of Stover and Lane…and will miss Nelson’s passion, but not his tantrums. Kid needs to grow up.

  • richardonthego

    Who would everyone rather have than Howland? Who could we realistically replace him with?

  • ucla-of-the-rockies

    Cameron Dollar

  • FIGHTONtoVICTORY

    UCLA 2nd to last in the conference??? Isn’t UCLA supposed to be a basketball school? haha what an embarrassment… i didnt think anything could be more embarrassing than UCLA football, i guess i found it.

  • Uh Jamie Dixon

    Duh

  • Anonymous

    Nestor and his Bruinsnation followers are scum. They shouldn’t be called Bruin fans or Bruins nation. They act as if they represent the thoughts of the collective UCLA students and alum when in reality they don’t.

  • Anonymous

    BruinInSeattle,

    I’m the anonymous poster to whom you replied earlier.

    Nestor and his rectal-attachment Tydides care nothing for UCLA, they care only about bullying others.

    As for the “sanity and manhood” reference, that was not directed at you, but at the Athenian boy-lovers at ruination.

    And if I were to sound like them, I’d be foaming at the mouth illiterately.

  • Coach Rick Neuheisal

    I at least had a .500 record.

    Speaking of me, how’s the search for my replacement going? Seems like my old boss was shooting for the stars but is going to end up in Pacoima…. you know, should a move be made at the top, I’m available.

  • Anonymous

    Fightontovictory – No conference games have been played. What the hell are you writing about? Get lost.

  • Gutty Lil Bruin

    Bring back CRN as athletic director. He can find us a qualified football coach and deal with this basketball mess. He may have to coach the basketball team too.

  • FIGHTONtoVICTORY

    im talking about overall win-loss. impressive none the less.

  • MPP Bruin

    Time to let the BN-angst go, guys. I know it’s fun to gripe about them, but let’s at least restrict it topics when they’ve actually done something nutty. I typically come on to Jon’s site to get his take (and yours) on what’s happening, not just to bash BN.

    Here ends my soap box.

  • http://paulm Ley

    Those idiotic LOSERS over at BRUIN NATION are the laughing stock of websites. Amazing #$$#@ happens when you give dorks and a keypad to hide behind.

  • Anonymous

    When Nestor bans himself, then the bashing will end.

  • post move

    To Reeves Nelson:

    Talent is God-given, be humble.

    Fame is man-given, be thankful.

    Conceit is self-given, be careful.