VIDEO: Steve Alford takes blame for UCLA’s 86-84 loss to UW

UCLA head coach Steve Alford took “full responsibility” for the his team’s 86-84 home loss to Washington on Thursday night, one in which the Bruins dug themselves an early hole with an ugly first half.

“It looked like we had several guys not into the game and not ready to play,” Alford said. “That falls on me. I didn’t see that and didn’t get that read in practice, but we had a lot of them that were very out of character in the first half.”

UCLA drops second straight Pac-12 opener in 2OT loss at UW

For the second straight year, UCLA stumbled in its Pac-12 opener.

The No. 25 Bruins hung on for two overtimes at Washington on Friday night, but couldn’t force a third in a 96-93 loss in Seattle. It marked the Huskies’ first win against Steve Alford, leaving USC as the only Pac-12 team that has yet to beat the third-year UCLA coach.

Alford is now 7-12 in conference road games with the Bruins. He has yet to sweep a series away from Pauley Pavilion.

Washington guard Andrew Andrews tied his career high with a game-high 35 points, shooting seven of 19 from the field and 17 of 19 from the line. The senior, who leads the Pac-12 in scoring, was responsible for seven of of UW’s final 11 points.

UCLA point guard Bryce Alford started the night by missing 12 of his first 13 shots, but drilled a pair of threes in the final 22 seconds of regulation to tie the game. With 16 seconds left in the extra period, the junior hit a third. These were the Bruins’ only 3-pointers of the night.

Alford led the team with 30 points, but only converted five of his 21 field goal attempts. He had one assist and seven turnovers. He did, however, make 17 of 18 free throws — giving the Bruins crucial points in a game bogged down by fouls. Continue reading “UCLA drops second straight Pac-12 opener in 2OT loss at UW” »

VIDEO: Steve Alford on UCLA’s preparation for Pac-12 play

UCLA head coach Steve Alford talks about his team’s progress as they prepare to start Pac-12 play on Friday at Washington.

The Bruins are expecting the return of reserve guard Prince Ali, who has missed three games with a bruised knee, but forward Gyorgy Goloman — sidelined all season by a stress fracture in his leg — remains doubtful to make the trip north.

Pac-12 links: Why Ben Howland went to Mississippi State

» Ben Howland still has photos of his Santa Barbara house on his phone, but he’s temporarily given up the comforts of Southern California for Starkville — a place that has given him another chance to coach basketball.

» Charges against Dominique Hatfield have been dropped after an alleged armed robbery, opening the door to a possible return for the Utah cornerback.

» An Oregon State student saved a woman from a burning car. Continue reading “Pac-12 links: Why Ben Howland went to Mississippi State” »

Pac-12 links: Marcus Mariota is the last unsigned NFL first-round pick

» Former Oregon quarterback and No. 2 overall NFL draft pick Marcus Mariota has not yet signed his contract with the Tennessee Titans, making him the last first-rounder to hold out. A report suggested that Mariota was upset that the contract barred him from surfing — but, disappointingly, others have debunked that reason.

» Utah cornerback Dominique Hatfield has been charged with aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony. A former receiver, he was expected to start as a junior.

» Colorado defensive tackle Josh Tupou has been ruled out for the Buffaloes this season after being arrested in spring, but school officials aren’t commenting further. Continue reading “Pac-12 links: Marcus Mariota is the last unsigned NFL first-round pick” »