Dedicated to the HATRED of all things trOJan


Wake News – Yesterday, in wake of the news that made me feel like I was AT a wake, I “introduced” only the two new members of the UCLA Dance Team.  Today I bring you the six new girls on the Cheer Squad

I tend to react over-emotionally to pain and heartache.  Obviously, I am overly passionate, and not all that stable.  Well, I’m happy to report that the student for whom I was feeling sympathy yesterday is MUCH stronger than I am.  She has taken the day in stride, harbors no resentment, and will live on with the same joy for life that she has always shown.  This is just more proof that the UCLA Spirit Squad recruits and attracts high quality human beings who have solid character, and who are much more mature than I ever was or will ever be.

The Cheer Squad had added six new members this week, and I will point them out to you in Continue Reading »


Deja boo — Last time we saw “13-9” it was 2006, and the Bruins were shocking u$c, knocking the trojans out of the National Championship game;  This time it’s the total members of the UCLA Dance Team being slashed by 4

Perhaps a 13-member Dance Team was just too unwieldly or too expensive, but more likely the judges just felt like there were only 9 auditioners who stood out to such a degree that they were elite enough for inclusion on the World’s Best Dance Team.  So the 2017-18 UCLA Dance Team will have only 9 members (all female), down from last year’s record high of 13.

7 of 9 (which is the name of Jeri Ryan’s BORG character on Star Trek Voyager) are returnees:  Katy, Kaitlynn, Kendenn, Christine, Daphne, Emily, and Louisa;  The two newcomers are Jordan and Ashlee. [I will do a breakdown like this for the Cheer Squad next time I wake up — Probably in about 20 hours if I’m lucky]

Below are 82 more photos of people trying out for the Dance Team.  Jordan is wearing #43, and Ashlee is wearing #44.  In the near future, I will post more photos of both the Dance Team and Cheer Squad. Continue Reading »


Audition and subtraction — The UCLA Spirit Squad Try-outs were held on Sunday, and yes, the DYNASTY continues, but there was one gut-wrenching omission that has me royally pained


Ok, let me start by saying that I have nothing but love for Mollie and her staff, and lots of respect for the selection process itself.  I understand how DIFFICULT it is to differentiate between so many beautiful, talented applicants, and I readily admit that I am NO EXPERT on cheer stunting or dance.  That being said, there was a participant on Sunday who is one of the most exotically beautiful, sweet, smart, and (seemingly) talented students in my recent memory, who will not be gracing the sidelines next season, and it just kills me.

I am not going to mention the name, because I don’t care to further highlight the EXACT situation.  I accept the fact that my lack of expertise in this field is the reason why I can’t fathom the decision.  To my layman’s eye, there was no doubt whatsoever that she belongs on the Squad.  I know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so my opinion about her superior looks is completely subjective, but fitness is more objective, and I’m pretty certain that she was in the top percentiles on that parameter.  I guess the judges felt there were others who “performed” better, on the floor and in the interviews.  Grrr.  I ACCEPT the honest and sincere decision of the committee.  I hope you all can accept that my heart aches.

Now that I have gotten that off my chest, hopefully without offending anyone, and definitely without casting aspersions at the lovely ladies who DID make the Squad, I can tell you a little more about the event.  The biggest development in my mind was that the Dance Team remains, at least for the time being, ALL-FEMALE.

As you might remember from last year, Continue Reading »


It’s the end of the Squad, as we know it — Do you feel fine?  Saturday’s Spring Showcase was the last performance of the current UCLA Spirit Squad that I will attend, so this collection today will be my final share of their beauty and grace, as auditions for next year’s edition take place this Sunday

Before last year’s auditions happened, I would have practically guaranteed today that the vast majority of the UCLA Spirit Squad who were not Seniors will be back next year.  But last year proved that there are no guarantees in life, and that inclusion on the Country’s ELITE Cheerleading unit is strictly merit-based.  Nothing is automatic, and the selection committee will not play favorites.  So no matter who your personal favorites are on this year’s squad, you may never see them again adorned in the iconic blue and gold uniforms that make them seem larger-than-life.

So, since this will be my very last photo-article before the tryouts next Sunday, please savor these shots, and think about what great ambassadors for UCLA these students have been, and how much glory they have brought to our school.  I wish them all the best, and I hope that those who try out again make it, but if they don’t, I have total faith that they will survive it emotionally, persevere, and attain the success and happiness in life that they truly deserve.

Now, because I like most of my articles to contain at least something about UCLA Sports, I will mention the Bruins who are still alive in the NBA Playoffs, in case you wanted a somewhat vested interest in the outcomes of this postseason:  Root for the defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers if you would like to see Continue Reading »


Who ya calling Boing? — In 14 years of attending these Spring Showcase autograph sessions, this is the first time ever I’ve seen Spirit Squad members out there in the fray, prompting me to leap into action and capture these rare moments of two worlds colliding

Usually, after a Football event, I post my 50-80 best shots in one article.  But on Saturday, there were so many shots that I consider “first-nighters,” that I had to split them into two articles.  I think if I put 100 or more in one article, and you’re trying to see them on your phone, they may take forever to load.  So I put all the Football/scrimmage “non-cheer” shots in the preceding article, and saved all the cheerleader pics for this one.  But since, for the first time ever, I got shots of Dance Teamers WITH Footballers, this article has a little of both.

There were 11 of the 23 Spirit Squad girls in attendance (plus 1 in [cute] plain clothes, just visiting!), and they were all super nice.  With Auditions coming up next week, Continue Reading »


It’s a jungle out there — The White team uses Bolu to beat the Blues 17-10, as Olorunfunmi runs for 2 TD’s including a 46-yarder with 2 minutes to go to overcome Josh Rosen’s 14-for-18 resurrection

It’s an annual refrain:  You can’t glean too much from a Spring scrimmage.  A lot will change and develop in the four months leading up to the season.  Players will create chemistry, the QB will iron out timing issues with his Receivers, and Linemen will gel as they learn the playbook and master their assignments.  So any observations made at the showcase should be taken with a grain of salt.  That being said, Bruin fans on Saturday were fretting over the same issues that plagued last year’s 4-and-8 squad:  A number of dropped passes, wide open Receivers missed, and Blockers failing to get a push off the ball or open many holes.

Don’t worry.  It’s normal for the Defense to be ahead of the Offense at this point of the year.  Adarius Pickett underscored that with an early Interception of a Josh Rosen pass.  Even with Takk McKinley on the sidelines in his new Atlanta Falcons gear, the Defense still looked pretty stout.  But the Offense had its moments too:  Josh Rosen completed 14-of-18 passes, including a Touchdown to Darren Andrews;  Back-up QB Devon Modster consistently moved his unit down the field, picking up lots of first downs (despite missing at least 3 open targets with inaccurate throws); and Running Back Bolu Olorunfunmi gained 88 yards on the ground including 2 TD’s, the last of which was the 46-yard game-winner (pictured twice above).

But the best part to me of watching the new Offense:  Trick Plays!  There was one play where the QB flipped the ball to Wide Receiver Jordan Lasley, who then completed a pass downfield.  Later Continue Reading »


Russell Shouts — Pro Superstar and Bruin-for-Life Russell Westbrook rewrites the NBA Record Book by setting the All-Time High for Triple-Doubles in a Season with 42, breaking Oscar Robertson’s 55-year old mark

Mark Cuban may be rich, and may be smart when it comes to money and investing, but he sure is clueless when it comes to Russell Westbrook.  Recently, Cuban spouted off about the former Bruin Basketball star, saying that Russ was not a Superstar.  Cuban has been eating those words all season long, but he should really be gagging on them today, after Westbrook last night set the ALL-TIME NBA RECORD for Triple-Doubles in a Season, with 42.  This new mark breaks Oscar Robertson’s record, which had stood for a remarkable FIFTY-FIVE YEARS!

As if setting that record isn’t enough to make Cuban choke on his own idiotic words, Westbrook didn’t stop wowing everyone upon achieving that goal;  In fact, with his Thunder down by 10 late in the game against the Nuggets, Russell scored 15 consecutive points to end the game, including a THIRTY-SIX foot three-pointer AT THE BUZZER to give Oklahoma City a 106-105 victory.

It wasn’t like Denver was lying down;  This game was a must-win for the Nuggets.  The loss eliminated them from the Playoffs.  And they have Westbrook to NOT thank.  Westbrook scored FIFTY-ONE points, had 16 rebounds, and 10 Assists in addition to winning the game at the final horn.

Westbrook is a leading candidate for League MVP, and considering the fact that he is AVERAGING a Triple-Double for the Season, and leading the League in Scoring, it would be a travesty if they gave the award to anyone else.  Russell is the first person Continue Reading »

(cardinal and) GOLD McDONALD HAD A PHARM–

8-game suspension?  E-I-E-Oh-no! — Former trojan T.J. McDonald is suspended by the NFL for the first half of the 2017 season, due to his driving while wasted on drugs and crashing into another car

It’s been a while since a former trojan has made headlines with criminal behavior — quite a rare cold spell.  But that drought was ended today, when the NFL announced the 8-game suspension without pay of ex-u$c Defensive Back T.J. McDonald.  The suspension is the League’s reaction to a May 2016 incident when McDonald got all hopped up on prescription meds, and careened his car into a parked vehicle in Woodland Hills.

McDonald pleaded no contest to a “wet reckless” charge, which is a form of DUI.  He was sentenced to 36 months of probation, 200 hours of community service,  18 Narcotics Anonymous meetings, a one-month live-in residential drug program, and he had to pay $1,900 to the owner of the car he smashed into.  Apparently, the NFL felt the need to pile on, with a half-season suspension without pay.  As it was, McDonald wasn’t getting paid anyway, since the Rams had already cut him last year.  McDonald is a free agent, but his value just went WAY down, now that he can’t play until Week 9.

In cases like this one, where a young man falls prey to the perils of ADDICTION, it is common to look at the parents, who might share the blame.  Maybe it was his upbringing that led to his lack of morals and self-control.  Well, in this instance, maybe the acorn didn’t fall far from the tree:  T.J.’s Dad Tim, just like T.J., is a former trojan football player. Continue Reading »

De’Aaron and de errin’

To err is human, and so is Lonzo:  With Kentucky Freshman Point Guard De’Aaron Fox having the game of his life while his UCLA counterpart Lonzo Ball was not, the Wildcats eliminate the Bruins, who committed too many errors — mental and physical — in an 86-75 loss

Lonzo Ball is one of the best players to ever wear those four letters across his chest.  But his final game for UCLA was not up to his lofty standards.  It was so far below his bar, that rumors of a groin pull gained traction in cyberspace.  But Coach Steve Alford denied any injury, and took away a pretty damn good excuse for the Bruins’ 86-75 season-ending loss to Kentucky.

Other excuses could be the foul trouble that Thomas Welsh was in, or the unusually hot outside shooting by the Wildcats, but the Bruins basically just got outplayed by what was tonight, a superior team.  DeAaron Fox was unstoppable, driving around UCLA’s perimeter defenders like they were stuck in quicksand, Continue Reading »


Ball is MVP of Sac. — At halftime in Sacramento, up by 3 over trendy Final Four pick UCLA, Cincinnati might have been having visions of an easy “Natty” (National Championship); Then came Lonzo Ball-bearing down on the Bearcats, as the Bruins rolled a ‘nati on a roll to a Natty of their own, 79-67

What a day, what a day, what a day, what a day, what a day!  First, slimy Rick Pitino and 2-seed Louisville gets knocked out of the NCAA Tournament, by Michigan (a team UCLA already beat this year).  Then slimy Southern Cal got eliminated by Baylor, when trojan thug Chimeze Metu choked away their chance by goaltending a late Bear lay-up.  So sad for Metu, but KARMA.  He had a monster game, scoring 28, but will forever be known around here for slapping/punching one opponent in the back, and trying to trip another one along the sidelines during a game, and now, for costing sc a shot at the Sweet 16, where they haven’t been since Metu was only 4 feet tall.

So Louisville and SUC were gone.  What else could I ask for on this day?  How about 2-seed DUKE getting bounced in the Round of 32, by the REAL USC?  Duke choked away a double-digit lead, and fell down by double-digits before losing by 7.  Also today, 3 other teams I hate (North Carolina, Kentucky, and Oregon) all showed major vulnerability, barely eeking out tough victories as all their opponents blatantly choked in the final minutes).  UK and maybe UNC, could be UCLA’s next foes, so it’s a confidence-builder for the Bruins to see that both of those mighty powers were not so mighty today.

So this is a whole lot of good news (and bad, but encouraging news), and I haven’t even gotten to the Bruin game yet.  But before I do, I have even more fun facts:  Ex-trojan player and current Laker thug Nick Young (aka “Swaggy P”) just got fined $25,000 by the NBA for Thuggery on the court.  After he got fouled, he took exception, got up and shoved the player, causing a bench-clearing brawl.  The foul was nothing out of the ordinary — just a hard foul that you see all the time.  But being such a pUSCy, Thuggy P had to make something out of it.  I would say he lost his composure, but he never had any to begin with.

So “what a day,” indeed.  But if UCLA didn’t survive the Round of 32, the day would still live in infamy.  And for a while, Continue Reading »


I Kent, I Kent, I Kent Stand Losing — With Anigbogu a no-go and Bryce a no-show (fo’ fo’ in a row), it’s up to Lo to survive a low bridge and lead the Bruins past a valiant 13th-seeded Kent St. with a late-but-perfect 12-for-12 12-minute run to finally pull away from the Golden Flashes, 97-80; Leaf, Holiday, and Welsh take turns helping Ball take out the Flash

Finally, March Madness has arrived for UCLA.  If you are a typical sports fan, you understand why The Big Dance is included when I think about “a few of MY FAVORITE THINGS…”

Boys in white jerseys with blue Golden Flashes
Ball aches but stays on the court when he crashes
Holiday, Leaf and Welsh playing like kings
These are a few of my favorite things

When the Bryce bites
When Ball’s hip stings
When we’re playing bad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so sad


The Hills (of Westwood) are alive, with the sound of advancing.  It wasn’t as easy as expected, but 3-seed UCLA finally climbed every mountain, and escaped to the alps and said So Long, Farewell, with a 97-80 victory over the Golden Flashes.  It was truly out of the Kent-a-bury Fails, as the Bruins couldn’t bury Kent St. early, despite charging out to a 20-5 lead.  Kent St. was obviously intimidated by their Tournament invitation, and by the four letters on the front of the Bruins’ jerseys.  That fear was manifested by early-game jitters and an inability to find the hoop.  Led by Lonzo Ball’s 10 early Points and T.J. Leaf’s dominance (he got 16 of his game-high 23 points in the first half), UCLA looked like they were going to cruise.  Even without Freshman big man Ike Anigbogu, who was ruled out with a Sprained Foot, the Bruins were a stratosphere above this opponent… or so it seemed.

With Ike unavailable, Continue Reading »


It’s NOT Cardinal Sin City — The Cardinal & Gold choke away several chances to catch the Blue & Gold at the end, as Hamilton shoots down the trojans with his 22, with Leaf’s 10 in the second half helping the Bruins win the duel in Las Vegas, 76-74

 The UCLA Bruins came THIS close to Leaving Las Vegas empty-handed wearing nothing more than a barrel.  UCLA almost blew a 14-point lead against lowly u$c, but never gave up the lead, going wire-to-wire to knock troy out of the Pac-12 Tournament, 76-74.  Sc had a few chances to tie the game in the final minute, but Bennie Boatwright bricked up his EIGHTH missed shot of the game (with only 3 makes), and Elijah Stewart missed the uncontested 2-foot putback, allowing Lonzo Ball to grab the rebound and flick the ball to Bryce Alford, who, with 12 seconds left, sank two Free Throws to give the Bruins a 5-point lead.

SC still had a chance to come back, but they took FOREVER to get off another shot — Boatwright MADE the one that was too little, too late, with only 4 seconds left!  Then, with sc out of time outs and down by 2, Lonzo inbounded to Bryce, who, before sc could foul him, threw the ball downcourt to Isaac Hamilton, and the clock ran out with UCLA on top.

So it was Bryce Alford who made the game-winning free throws, and the game-saving smart pass.  But Continue Reading »

Copyright © 2007 All photos and stories herein are sole property of
Any commercial re-use without express written permission is strictly prohibited, and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.