I apologize for not knowing this before I dared to comment on UCLA basketball from a fan's perspective, but apparently a prerequisite for being a Bruin fan is a complete and unconditional hatred of Steve Lavin. There I was, week after week, sitting on my couch and rooting for UCLA to win, often followed up with a few paragraphs on this blog with analysis of what I'd witnessed, all the while thinking that rooting for the Bruins to win would be enough to call myself a fan. But I fall short, and finally someone let me in on the secret:
Sure it is possible "to believe the guy was a horrible coach, and to be glad he's no longer the coach at UCLA, and not hate his guts." That wouldn't make you as much of UCLA basketball fan as any casual observer of ND football fan who harbors no ill feelings towards Davies or Willingham. UCLA basketball ... heck everything about UCLA is a religion to us. And Steve Lavin - if anyone who has followed UCLA baskebtall closely online last few years would know - HATES UCLA basketball and its fans. He hates us. And it is simple black and white - you are either with him or you are either with us. Right now from your posts it sounds like you are making excuses for his subtle digs at Howland. Kind of odd for someone who comes on here to claim himself as a UCLA hoops fan. Perhaps you should stick to blogging about the Big-10 and enjoy Lavin's commentary on those tough, grinding out, moving chains in the snow games.
Thank you, bluestreet. For the last 3-10 years, I've been living a lie. I've been telling myself that I really wanted UCLA to win, and when people asked to know of which basketball teams I considered myself a fan, I almost always told them "UCLA!". But now I know. I'm a fraud.
See, I used to think that someone could root for a team without hating their previous coach. I used to think that if Steve Lavin wore a red tie on television, it meant that he was wearing a suit with which a red tie looked appropriate. But now I know that the bastard was wearing in support of
Let me tell you, I'm glad I found out about this when I did. I may have sat down to watch
Oh well, Go Illini.
Looks like I've got a long way to go. Lavin expects the same things from UCLA basketball as pretty much everyone else who has written about them in the last year, namely the potential to go the elite 8 this year, and to compete for a national championship next year. See, I read that and kind of that it jibed with my own expectations. But I was wrong. All he was doing was setting expectations for the Bruins that were too high so that they would inevitably fail. That guy is one clever bastard.