“Angel in a Centerfold.”

The latest edition is missing staples UCLA, NC, UConn, and U of A, so instead, thumb through this unabashed pictorial:  The (Cheer) Girls of UCLA

There has been some Bruin-related news lately, but nothing worthy of shouting in the streets — Nothing worthy of wildly celebrating.  So this article really just exists in order to fulfill a promise:  More UCLA Cheer Squad photos.  But first, here’s a little round-up of the almost-newsworthy UCLA-connected tidbits that have popped up this week.

Starting with the exoneration of Nikola Dragovic.  No, not for his season-long shooting slump and underachievement on the Boards and Defensive end, but for his Felony Assault charges.  The charges were dropped, because it looks like witnesses supported Nik’s story that it was self-defense.  It is extremely pleasing that a Bruin ballplayer just avoided Criminal charges.  However, it can’t righteously be “celebrated,” because it was still a situation that should have been avoided, it seems to have ruined him mentally for the whole season, and he had another legal problem before this one.

In a similarly-muted celebration, let’s hear it for Michael Roll, for making the All Pac-10 Tourney Team.  It’s terrific that the Senior had a good two final games, including a career-high 27 Points in his Swan Song, but how excited are Bruin fans supposed to be, when the team didn’t even reach the Final (let alone, the NCAA’s)?

And it’s always nice to notice when Bruins do well in the Pro’s, but there are so many doing so well in the NBA right now, it’s not really a reason to break out the bubbly (or create a new headline & article) every time one of them lights up a box score.  But as long as we are recapping:  Darren Collison, now ranked as the #2 Rookie in the NBA, won the League’s Rookie of the Month Award for February.  And in the Hornets’ win over the Clippers, he coolly put up 18 Points and 14 Assists.  For the Clips, Baron Davis actually matched Collison’s 18 Points, and topped his Assists with 17, albeit in a losing effort.  And on that night, Collison and Davis weren’t the only young Bruins who were Barely 18 — Jrue Holiday also scored 18, also in a losing effort.  In addition to the 18 Points, Holiday added 8 Rebounds, 6 Assists, 3 Steals, and a Block.  I would proffer that those numbers, from just the one game, are basically enough to conclude that Gatorade was right and Ben Howland was right, and anyone who thought that his High School was too small for him to be a big-time talent was wrong.  And if you think that the one game was a fluke, he did it again last night, with 19, 7, and 7.  It sure looks like that if he stayed in school for one more year, the Bruins would still be playing.

Instead, it’s been like the “2012” Disaster film.  And did you happen to see the “2012” DVD?  Did you watch the Special Features?  If you did, then you saw Roland Emmerich, Director of the biggest disaster movies, like “2012,” “Day After Tomorrow,” and “Independence Day,” wearing a UCLA t-shirt on set.  What are the odds that right at the end of the most disastrous UCLA season in recent memory, the cinematic “Master of Disaster” sports a UCLA shirt — complete with Joe Bruin on the sleeve — on the DVD for the most visually mind-blowing disaster movie of all time?

Now it’s time to kick back and enjoy the NCAA Tournament, for once without the stress of UCLA possibly going down too early.  Yeah, of course, I’d rather have the stress, but since it wasn’t to be this year, Bruin fans should savor this rare opportunity to enjoy the games without being concerned about UCLA, and about whom the Bruins will have to play.

And whether you choose to watch the Tourney or not, here is a 25-pic photospread of the Bruin CHEER SQUAD only.  In order to live up to my promise to a reader, these photos have NO Dance Teamers.  The shots are from the ’09 Football game against Oregon.  These are the best, that are Cheer Squad only, that didn’t accompany the original article, and that haven’t been posted since.  In the very near future, I’ll share another 25 or so, never-before-seen Cheer Squad photos, from the same game, but most of those also feature Dance Team members in the frame.  Oh, the horror.  My point, BL, is that I probably still have about 50 somewhat-decent, unpublished Cheer Squad shots, FROM EACH GAME.  Admittedly, they aren’t the BEST of the Best, because the cream of the crop gets posted the morning after the games, but there are still enough to keep posting new ones for a long time to come.  I hope this begins to make up for the neglect I’ve shown to this under-appreciated group of students.  I even tried not to cut off the GUYS’ heads as much as I usually do.

Please CLICK on these beautiful photos to ZOOM IN, and just “mouse over” the photos to make a hidden caption pop up.  Today’s captions are mostly March Madness-related.

If you don’t think these girls are beautiful, it’s Madness.

    So, the brackets start coming apart in a few hours…

      … and there’s tons of “expert advice” floating around out there…

… Obama, NOT going out on a limb, likes Kansas, with Kentucky, Villanova, and Kansas St. in the Final Four.  He got it right last year with North Carolina.

Lots of pundits think the Rebounding prowess of San Diego St. will see the Aztecs upset Tennessee.

#4 seed Purdue, playing without their star Center, is also repeatedly predicted to go down, to #13 Siena.

Actually, it would be nicer to see Calipari and Pitino go out in the 1st Round.

Only once in recent memory have all four #1 Seeds made the Final Four… so who is the likliest upset victim?

The so-called experts think Duke has the easiest region, but is still the most vulnerable to missing out.

#1 Syracuse is also missing a recently-injured player;  If he does not return next week at 100%, the Orangemen will be hard-pressed to see Indy.

Kentucky seems to be the hot pick;  Extreme Youth is their weakness, but a floundering Texas may not be able to capitalize.  Maybe Wisconsin or WVU can?

Well-balanced Kansas is still the Experts’ favorite, but they sure didn’t look like World-beaters when then beat lowly UCLA by only a dozen.

I hate it when a flock of Ducks migrates South right through one of my shots!

And speaking of Ducks, they fired 13-year Basketball Coach Ernie Kent this week, and P.J. Carlesimo is rumored to be a replacement candidate.

The other “upset specials” that everyone loves are Cornell over Temple, UTEP over Butler, and Houston over Maryland.  I don’t like any of them.

The prognosticators also like #11 Old Dominion over Digger Phelps’ school.  I’m all FOR that one.

Here is a graphic representation of what MY brackets will look like by tomorrow night.

… but that’s okay, because pessimistic me always picks the teams that I hate, to win.

Ohio State, Georgetown, Baylor, West Virginia — These are the 4 non-#1’s receiving the most heat lately.

The way Oregon State got killed in the CBI, and Arizona State CHOKED away a 5-point lead with 20 seconds left in the NIT doesn’t bode well for Cal and Washington.

Teams I DON’T want to win:  Notre Dame (Digger), Cal & Washington (Pac-10), Gonzaga, UCSB, SDSU (would dominate local headlines), Kansas (too much success already), Louisville (Slimy Pitino), Kentucky (Slimy Calipari), Florida (Beat UCLA twice), UNLV (Stanback), Pitt (Dixon), Duke (!).

And I don’t really want a double-digit seed to win it all — Dick Vitale might blow a valve.

Dick Enberg is the Dick Clark of Sports.  Or the Betty White.

At least U$C is not in the Tournament.  Their inclusion can mean a LOT of stress for trojan-haters.  I really thought that Mayo team was going to make a deep run.

Good luck with your Office Pools — I hope you have better luck with yours than Neuheisel did with his.

Last one for today — I hope you enjoyed them.  More, with the Dance Team too, coming soon.  BTW:  I confirmed, SADLY, that Michelle is no longer on the Spirit Squad (but I don’t know what happened).


2 responses to “MISS MARCH MADNESS”

  1. UCLADal Avatar

    Bless you Trojan-Hater! Bless you!

  2. BL Avatar

    Thanks a lot T-H! Looking forward to seeing UCLA Cheer Squad a lot more on this site. It’s also nice to see more pictures including the guys. Thanks for keeping your promise.