BeatSC.com: Dedicated to the HATRED of all things trOJan

THAT SMARTS!

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Don’t be stupid, be a Smarty, don’t you join the alt-right party — The loss on Saturday still smarts, and so does the sting of some other things in my life, so it’s time to immerse myself (and anyone else who cares to join me) in the UCLA Spirit Squad, who has the beauty, grace and SMARTS to make the pain stop smarting

As you know, this has been a really tough month for me (for “heart-breaking” personal reasons), and for so many others (for “heart-stopping” political reasons).  The pain lingers for me, and getting killed by sc doesn’t help.  Now we are being bombarded by Breitbart-related news, and constant reminders and warnings about Neo-Nazis and White Supremacists on the rise, even within the incoming administration.  I don’t care about current events nearly as much as many other people, but I really, really do hate Nazis.

I have said here repeatedly that I don’t want to offend any of my readers.  I know I have some Conservative Bruin fans reading what I write, and I have no problem with that.  But if any of them support the Nazi Party or believe in White Power, I don’t need to retain them as readers.  Maybe they wouldn’t be here, since the Spirit Squad embraces diversity, and includes more than a half-dozen members who don’t click the “White” box on job applications.  Hopefully, that fact weeds out the extreme racists.  I do have several friends who are happy about the election results, and I am ok with that… unless they are applauding the alt-right rise to power as well.  Let’s just hope that the panic is overblown, and that Continue Reading »

VIKES ADD A BRUIN, BEAT A TROJAN

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‘Sota jerks Palmer off high horse — Vikings pick up Kicker Kai Forbath, who becomes the fifth Bruin on their active roster (sixth overall), and promptly break their losing streak, by exploiting the weakness of ex-trojan Carson Palmer in 30-24 victory over Arizona

This weekend wasn’t ALL bad for Bruin Football Fans, or all good for sc Football fans, IF they care about their former players now in the Pro’s.  On Sunday in Minnesota, the Vikings finally got back on the winning track by holding on in a 30-24 triumph over the Cardinals.  The Vikings, after winning their first 5 games of the season, had dropped 4 in a row, in part due to subpar performances by their Kicker, Blair Walsh.  Needing a change and a spark, the Vikings cut Walsh, and replaced him with Bruin Star Kai Forbath.

Not that Forbath was the Game MVP on Sunday, but he did make his only Field Goal attempt, as Minnesota won a one-possession game.  Forbath did have Continue Reading »

LONZO: FLOOR FUNKY; LEINART: CHORE MONKEY

sc16fb-9aMe: Poor Junkie — I’m addicted to the Bruins and the Simpsons, so tonight I had split-screen simultaneous smiles, as Lonzo Ball led UCLA to a rout of Long Beach State while Matt Leinart appeared on The Simpsons as a “Chore Monkey,” poking fun at his own failure and at u$c “academics”

It’s simply amazing how one gifted athlete can lift up and change an entire Basketball Team, and Program.  Freshman Phenom Lonzo Ball is just getting started, but already he has changed the culture of UCLA Basketball.  With Ball running the Offense instead of the out-of-position Bryce Alford, the 2016-17 Bruins are night-and-day from last year’s loooosing team.

Lonzo has energized the whole team, with his unselfish play, quick pace, high energy, and highlight-reel dunks.  Lonzo’s Basketball IQ is off the charts.  He gets the Offense in gear right from the Rebound, creating transition opportunities galore.  And in the halfcourt, he gets the whole team moving and passing around, even making the extra pass, and the extra, extra pass, until a wide-open shot presents itself.

Lonzo’s attitude has been overwhelmingly contagious, as all 7 rotation players have bought in to the new way of playing.  Everyone is passing more, breaking down court, and looking for — and making — the unselfish assists.  The team obliterated Long Beach State 114-77, marking the 3rd time in 4 games that they have scored in triple digits.  Ball had 20 and 11 Assists, only 1 away from Pooh Richardson’s Freshman Assist Record.  That record will probably fall within the month.

As I implied, Ball is not doing it alone.  Fellow Freshman stud T.J. Leaf is Continue Reading »

BLUE STATE

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Fabian Moreau comes up with a 2nd Qtr. INT.

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Kelly, Lauren, and Kate, making my day.

Blue and Fold — Like most Blue-Staters, fans in Blue are feeling blue, as UCLA gets up 14-7 on two Fafaul-to-Lasley TD passes, then gives up 29 straight points while Polamalu’s Offense gets shut out for the final 42 minutes in a 36-14 landslide

It looked good for 17 minutes.  The Bruins were up 14-7 over u$c, and it looked that they might be able to compete with the #13 trojans.  Then the bottom fell out, and the Bruins folded like a temp employee at The Gap.  The first 17 minutes included a first-drive-of-the-game 56-yard Touchdown pass from Mike Fafaul to Jordan Lasley, and a Fabian Moreau Interception that set up a 7-yard TD pass to Lasley, which made the score 14-7 UCLA.  But that was it.  UCLA’s Defense was able to muster another Interception, by Jayon Brown in the End Zone, and they also forced sc to settle for three Field Goals.  But they were unable to stop long drives, forcing only ONE PUNT until the last minutes of the (already-decided) game.  SC dominated time of possession, with successful 1st Down runs and successful 3rd Down conversions, often due to Quarterback Sam Darnold eluding the rush to extend plays and then hit open Receivers.  The Bruin Defense was definitely not playing their best game… but it was the Offense that really spelled the doom of UCLA.

Offensive Coordinator Kennedy Polamalu, who was a Fullback for u$c in his playing days, just contributed another win to his beloved trojans.  Hopefully, this will be his one and only season as the O.C. for UCLA.  It has been a giant failure, in every way you can possibly measure it.  Not to overstate it or anything, but some tactless Bruin fans in the stands were saying things like “They assassinated the wrong Kennedy!  Twice.”

And just when it looked like Polamalu had finally turned a corner — Not only did his Offense score with two early TD passes, but they also gained 30 yards on a Wide Receiver Pass, when Lasley threw to Brandon Stephens for a big gain.  But after the second TD, the Offense went right back to the stagnant, unimaginative, predictable unit that it has been for most of the season.  SC adjusted, Polamalu did NOT.  Sure Josh Rosen is out, but Mike Fafaul did not lose this game.  He did not turn the ball over, and Continue Reading »

PURGING PICS TONIGHT, PURGING COACHES TOMORROW NIGHT?

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Like a purgin’? — Here is Part 2 of the 170-pic mega-share, in order to have a clean slate for tomorrow.  And if the game goes even worse than expected, there may be a purge of another kind, that could make an ex-trojan Player an ex-Bruin Coach

No Bruin fan is EXPECTING a victory on Saturday night.  Some are HOPING for an upset, but most are just praying for something less painful than 50-0.  The Bruin Defense has not been too bad lately, so maybe they can keep it close.  But if the Offense — even with Mike Fafaul at the helm — fails to score, then I will be praying for the Offensive Coordinator to be unemployed by Sunday morning.

Anyway, I don’t really want to talk about — or even think about — what is about to transpire.  So… here are 85 more Cheerleader photos Continue Reading »

TIME FOR A BLOWOUT

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Into the valley of… no wait — I don’t mean the game, I mean I’m going to share 150 photos from the Oregon State game and 20 more from the Bonfire, so you have something to do tonight and tomorrow, waiting for, well, you know

Before the game tomorrow, I want to save all my previous pics from this week to flash drives and a cloud, and I want to clear my camera.  Soooooo, I’m going to blow them all out, right now.  170 photos (which didn’t make the previous cuts), tonight, in two parts.  Of course these shots are not the highest quality, because they were taken at night, with a cheap camera, no fancy lenses, and no tripod, many from 40 yards away.  But since the subject matter of the photos is the unparalleled UCLA Spirit Squad, they are still worth sharing.

So here are the first 85, including the one above, of the hug.  The second 85 will follow shortly.  I’m breaking them into two sets, because I don’t think an article with 170 pics will download onto a phone quickly enough.  Anyway, a HUG is precisely what I think I will need, around 11pm on Saturday night.  But you never know.  Maybe it will be a hug of joy, instead of a hug of sympathy Continue Reading »

BURNING AND YEARNING

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Burning down the m-o-U-$-C — The high winds die down in time for UCLA fans to warm themselves by the bonfire, and other hot-ness, and yearn for a season-salvaging upset

Just because Bruin confidence is at a severe low right now doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy a nice BeatSC Bonfire and Rally.  The usual overconfident rhetoric was at a definite minimum, but school spirit was still high.  Basically, we are still and always proud to be Bruins, because we don’t define ourselves solely by our gridiron results, like that other “SChool” does.

So it was lots of fun to get together with other alumni and thousands of current students, to watch the student dance troupes and a capella groups, to cheer for Bruin athletes, and to swoon in awe of the spectacular Spirit Squad, all as a prelude to a nice cozy fire.

Highlights included seeing the 2015 National Championship Trophy shown off by members of the UCLA Men’s Water Polo team, an appearance by Gymnastics Coach Valerie Kondos-Field, and a pep talk from former Bruin Football Stars Jonathan Franklin and Donovan Carter.  We also got to meet and cheer for 6 Bruin Olympians including gymnasts Kyla Ross, Madison Kocian, Continue Reading »

THIS BLOWS

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Everyone knows it’s Windy — It’s 1pm, and the wind is howling through the Southland, and if it doesn’t stop soon, it will be a fire retardant that will cause the Fire Marshall to ban tonight’s BeatSC Bonfire

This has happened before.  The bonfire has gone UNLIT a couple of times in recent memory — Once because selfish protestors blocked access, and once or twice because high winds made lighting a big fire in the middle of a crowded campus unsafe.  As Coach Mora said on one of those occasions, we don’t need a fire to get fired up.

I love the fire and the flames and the burning trojan symbols, but the rally will still be fun even if the fire is prohibited.  There are lots of great student dance troops, and campus singing groups, plus Bruin Olympic Sports representatives, the UCLA Football Team, the Band, and of course, the UCLA Spirit Squad.  The Cheerleaders are enough all by themselves to make the event worthwhile.  Here are 73 more Cheer Photos Continue Reading »

MEDAL GODS

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Kareem gets some sugar… from the Big Cheese — Bruin Legend and Philanthropist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which is the highest honor that can be bestowed on a civilian in this Country

Another day, another Bruin gets a top honor.  Just a day or two after Bruin Dave Roberts gets named National League Manager of the Year, another Bruin trumps that award with an even more prestigious one — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has been selected by President Barack Obama as a recipient of the 2016 Presidential Medal of Freedom.  [Or as Steve Bannon would say:  Lame Duck Black Muslim Prez gives award to fellow Black Muslim rabble-rouser?]

This Award is designated for people who have contributed greatly to society, World Peace, culture, etc., and Abdul-Jabbar definitely deserves it.  Not only has he entertained millions with his Hall of Fame Basketball career, but he has also had success with acting, and especially with his WRITING.  His books and political commentary have stressed the importance of peace and harmony, racial tolerance, and other elements of society that require our attention.  He has remained a pillar of society, and a wonderful representative of UCLA and the United States throughout several decades.

So the Bruin Basketball Legend, who is known for his love of Jazz, is about to be a Medal Head.  And he won’t be alone — Joining him on the stage that night will be fellow recipients Michael Jordan, Tom Hanks, Bill Gates, Robert DeNiro, Robert Redford, Cicely Tyson, Continue Reading »

JUST THINK ABOUT BASEBALL

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Still premature to come up with Football talk — In order to prolong the avoidance of the subject of pigskin for a little longer, it’s my honor to honor Bruin Dave Roberts, the Rookie Manager of the Dodgers, who has just been honored as the 2016 National League Manager of the Year

For only the 6th time in National League History, a 1st-year Manager has won the Manager of the Year Award.  Dodger Manager and Bruin great Dave Roberts received the Award a couple of days ago, for leading the Dodgers to 91 wins and the NLCS despite a record number of injuries.

The Dodgers started the year with TEN players on the disabled list, and ultimately put TWENTY-EIGHT players on that list, which is the most of any team in THIRTY YEARS.  That laundry list of players included Superstar Pitcher Clayton Kershaw, who missed a big chunk of the season.  Despite all these seemingly insurmountable hurdles, Roberts kept morale high and kept the team focused as they overcame a big deficit in the standings, out-deuled the Giants to win the Division, and then beat the Nationals in the ALDS.  They finally fell to the Cubs, who went on to win the World Series, but Roberts’ Managerial acumen had already been on display long enough to Continue Reading »

JUMPING TO HOOPS

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The Pauley Tix of Dancing — The 2016-17 UCLA Basketball season is in full swing now, with the Bruins improving to 2-and-0 after their tougher-than-expected victory over overmatched Cal State Northridge

Let’s talk about UCLA Basketball, because I don’t want to think about Bruin Football too much this week.  With the pigskin Blue & Gold a 12-point Underdog at home this Saturday in the Rivalry game, I’m not the only one dreading the weekend.  So let’s switch the focus to Hoops.  The Bruins overcame a surprisingly difficult challenge from CSUN on Sunday to extend their winning streak to 2 games with a 102-87 victory.  The game was TIED 55-55 with under 15 minutes left, so the final margin may be a little bit deceiving.

Counting the exhibition game, UCLA has now scored in triple-digits in all three games this year, albeit against cupcake competition.  Still, the pace has been uptempo, with Freshman Lonzo Ball energizing the team in transition — in transition to being a decent team that doesn’t suck any more.

The Bruins are still missing two injured players who should give them the much-needed depth required to compete in the Pac-12, and maybe in the Big Dance.  Until those players return, UCLA is vulnerable, especially with Continue Reading »

WINNER WINNER, CHICKEN SANDWICH

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A little chicken before next week — Randall Goforth’s game-clinching 40-yard Pick Six with 2:14 left breaks UCLA’s depressing 4-game losing streak, as the Bruins escape the Beaver trap 38-24, but 60,000+ fans were more excited by winning free Chick Fil-A (because UCLA blocked a kick), and by the Veterans Day parachute spectacle, while some of us were more excited by the phenomenal UCLA Spirit Squad, and extremely UN-excited about the prospect of getting destroyed by troy next week

It’s always nice to get back in the win column, especially when it’s your first W in a month.  This was the worst drought in the Mora Era, and it took lowly Oregon State — a 13-point underdog — to allow Josh Rosen-less UCLA to finally notch a win.  Sure, a win is a win, but when you struggle to beat a very bad team, it does not bode well for next week’s Rivalry Game.

Oregon State had the ball down by only 7 with 2:14 to go, when Bruin Defensive Back Randall Goforth snatched a Beaver pass and returned it 40 yards for a Touchdown, effectively icing the game.  That tells you that this game was way too close for comfort.  The Bruins coughed up the ball a couple of times, leading directly and almost directly to Touchdowns.  On the second play of the game, a Soso Jamabo fumble, which should have been reviewed but wasn’t, led to a 4-yard TD drive for OSU.  But UCLA came back quickly with 21 straight points.  That third Bruin TD came on a blocked punt, returned all the way for a TD by Jordan Lasley, who also had a good game receiving, as did Darren Andrews.  That blocked kick earned free chicken sandwiches to each fan in attendance, thanks to a promotion with Chick Fil-A.

Lasley and Andrews had good games because QB Mike Fafaul is improving week by week.  He threw for 281 yards, and is limiting his passes-into-traffic.  He did throw one bad INT in the end zone, but he made up for it by being effective for most of the game.  He was constantly avoiding a big rush, moving from the pocket, throwing the ball away when necessary, and hitting open Receivers.  If not for the usual half-dozen DROPS, his stats would have been much better — way over 300 yards.

The Beaver Defense is pretty Continue Reading »

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