Jim Mora wants UCLA to build one of country’s top facilities


– Jim Mora is still working on his wish list for what he wants in UCLA’s new $50 million football facility, officially announced this morning.

“Our goal is to make it one of the top facilities in the country,” he said. “I think we have to be really good about looking ahead and seeing what types of technology are going to be available five years from now and move in that direction.

“We only get one shot at it. It’s not like you can get another shot here in the next 25 years.”

– Asked about an ideal completion date, Mora said: “Tomorrow. If it could be done by tomorrow, we’d be happy.”

– As a longtime NFL coach, Mora was familiar with using less-than-glamorous digs. On Jan. 26, 1995, when he was a defensive backs coach in New Orleans, a two-alarm fire forced the Saints out of their main building.

“The sauna caught on fire and they burned down,” he said. “We brought in trailers and the trailers were a huge upgrade to the facilities that we had. So I’ve never been one that thought facilities won football games for you.”

He added that the state of facilities become more important at the college level due to recruiting.

– Mora said athletic director Dan Guerrero approached him about a new football facility days after the completion of Pauley Pavilion.

– On offensive lineman Christian Morris’ decision to transfer: “We’re just hoping he finds happiness in his life and has success.”

– A hit on Shaq Evans in the New Mexico State game resulted in the Aggie defender being ejected for targeting. Mora said it’s important for coaches to continue to drill proper tackling techniques in practice, but remarked again on the difficulty of making such calls in real time.

The same went for the play that saw Anthony Barr rush untouched into the backfield and knock quarterback King Davis III out of the game. The hit earned Barr a flag for roughing the passer. Pac-12 officiating coordinator Tony Corrente told Mora that it looked like Barr lowered his head a bit at the last minute, which created the impression that he used the crown of his helmet.

“I’m trying to figure out why you wouldn’t block Anthony Barr. And on the next play, you wouldn’t block Myles Jack,” Mora said. “So, rather than penalize Anthony Barr for no one blocking him and him hitting the quarterback, I think we should probably block Anthony Barr. He’s a pretty good player.”

– Mora said having the bye week now will help the Bruins move to the morning practice schedule. UCLA begins classes on Thursday.

“They seem to enjoy it too,” he said. “Get out here, get working early.”

– Running back Roosevelt Davis, who had a walking boot on his right foot last week, returned to light activity in today’s practice. Defensive linemen Eli Ankou (knee) and Ian Taubler (concussion) also participated.

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  • Bruin Brian

    Jack,
    Can you PLEASE ask coach Mora if the idea of expanding the practice fields from 80 to 100 yards is under consideration for the new football project?

    • IIWIICUB

      why does it matter? has any team, ever in the history of football, practiced 90 yard drives? even in the 2 minute drill at the end?

      there’s is plenty of space at spaulding for the team to do everything it needs to.

  • Hank

    FINALLY!!!!!!

  • Scott

    Fired up to hear the news. Will it be able to compete with Oregon’s massive facility?

    • Joe Blow

      No way. Bruin Alums are too cheap. Period.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Excellent news. Way overdue. Time to lock down our program as the elite college football choice for recruits in the state of California.

    • Joe Blow

      Kool Aid time. Come and get it.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Oh, and classic comment from Mora on whether or not Barr’s hit on Davis III was legal:

    “I’m trying to figure out why you wouldn’t block Anthony Barr. And on the next play, you wouldn’t block Myles Jack,” Mora said. “So, rather than penalize Anthony Barr for no one blocking him and him hitting the quarterback, I think we should probably block Anthony Barr. He’s a pretty good player.”

    Just could never see Lane Kiffin coming up with something that dry and intelligent…

    • Joe Blow

      What a dapper dude. Putz.