UCLA basketball beefs up resume with major conference wins


It wasn’t just that No. 14 UCLA beat SEC and Big Ten teams over the weekend, it was how those wins were achieved that should inspire some more confidence.

For the first time in this young season, UCLA found itself in not one, but two tight games. It won both, claiming the tournament title at the Wooden Legacy in the process.

In Friday’s semifinal it staved off a pesky Nebraska team that nearly erased UCLA’s 15-point second-half lead. Then it withstood four lead changes and two tie scores in the final five minutes of Sunday’s win over Texas A&M in the tournament title game.

It’s not like they’re toppling the best teams in the country (Wait for it…UCLA plays at No. 1 Kentucky on Saturday!) but these are major conference opponents that pushed the Bruins to provide answers to some significant questions. Most notably, could freshmen Lonzo Ball and TJ Leaf answer the bell in close games? The answer is an unequivocal yes. Continue reading

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How UCLA players reacted to the end of the season

Here’s a collection of social media posts from UCLA football players after Saturday’s season-ending loss.

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Kennedy Polamalu out as UCLA OC/RB coach

Offensive coordinator Kennedy Polamalu works through drills with fullback Cameron Griffin. Photo by Brad Graverson // Daily Breeze

Offensive coordinator Kennedy Polamalu works through drills with fullback Cameron Griffin. Photo by Brad Graverson // Daily Breeze

About 17 hours after UCLA left Cal’s Memorial Stadium with its worst season since 2010, the school announced that offensive coordinator and running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu would not return next year.

Polamalu’s contract will not be renewed after UCLA’s new offense proved to be one of the worst in recent school history. The team ended the year at 127th out of 128 FBS teams in rushing and couldn’t even reach the 100-yard rushing mark against Cal’s defense, which was also ranked 127th in the country entering Saturday’s game.

The school said it will begin its search for a replacement immediately.

More on the coaching change.

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Wrapping up UCLA’s 36-10 loss to Cal

UCLA quarterback Mike Fafaul (12) throws a pass against California during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

UCLA quarterback Mike Fafaul (12) throws a pass against California during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

UCLA’s disappointing season only could have ended this way.

In a fitting finale, the Bruins flopped in a season-ending 36-10 loss to Cal. UCLA finishes at 4-8, 2-7 Pac-12.

The Bruins couldn’t even gain 100 rushing yards against Cal, whose rushing defense was allowing 290.1 yards per game before Saturday night. The Bears got enough pressure on Mike Fafaul to shake the quarterback in the pocket, and the once-mighty secondary also succumbed to the trials of a dismal year.

Links to wrap it up:

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