Blog Entry

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season

Posted on: July 29, 2011 4:25 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer

NEW YORK -- UCLA head coach Rick Neuheisel knows what it takes to win the Pac-12. He won the then-Pac-10 while at Washington and had the team in the upper echelon of the conference annually before being fired. After a pair of rough 4-8 seasons bookending his time in Westwood however, there's plenty of work to be done if the Bruins are to advance in the conference standings. Yet the coach, who briefly sat down with during Pac-12 Media Days, believes the team will finally turn the corner this year.

"I have high expectations, I always start the seasons with high expectations," Neuheisel said. "When you're coming off a year like we did, you can't wait to get that taste out of your mouth."

Neuheisel is one of four coaches to be rated as having a warm coaching seat heading into the season by senior writer by Dennis Dodd. The UCLA alum drew laughs at Media Day in Los Angeles when he joked about being happy to just be invited despite his status on the hot seat. He did note that he was just joking and actually hasn't felt the heat despite what some fans or media members think.
"I really don't feel it," he said. "It's just been brought to my attention so many times that it's like the elephant in the room so let me just talk about it so we can get that behind us. I have never been worried about losing my job, never one time in my life. I've lost my job before for reasons that have been well documented. But I've never lost my job because I wasn't doing a good job.

"I'm doing as good as job as I possibly can and working harder than I've ever worked."

This season is, of course, about wins and losses though. Neuheisel is hoping 2012 is a momentum builder for the program despite having a difficult schedule which includes hosting Texas and traveling to Stanford. Though there are five new coaches, including two new coordinators, there are several players coming back that are worth getting excited about. Running back Johnathan Franklin was a revelation last year and topped 1,100 yards rushing despite an anemic passing attack to take the pressure off of him. If the defense can be turned around and not give up 30 points per game (30.3 to be exact), you can understand why Neuheisel is much more hopeful about the upcoming season if they can stay healthy.

"I'm excited about the guys I have recruited," he said. "I feel they have confidence in me and our coaching staff. I feel like as many things that have bounced the wrong way so far in the three years, we're due some good bounces. I'm always optimistic in that regard and never been more optimistic about a year."

Since: Feb 3, 2008
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:18 pm

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season


SUCla has no chance beating SC. Their recruiting classes have been a joke, while SC is consistently Top 3. SC has better coaches, better players and the will to win. SUCla, does the same thing EVERY year......"UCLA has turned the corner....UCLA is going to win the Pac 10", etc. only to crash and burn when reality sets in. 

Another year....another crappy SUCla team. Deal with it.  

Since: Feb 11, 2009
Posted on: August 28, 2011 6:11 am

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season

UCLA may have only been 4-8 last season, but surely one of the signature wins was the victory over Texas.

Since: Jun 8, 2007
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:02 am

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season

This will be UCLA's breakout season. Chow didn't work, new coordinators are better. Super solid recruiting classes have matured. Bruins will be 8-4 and beat USC.

Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: July 30, 2011 11:42 pm

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season

Well said, Skye, I don't see it happening either-not with that schedule.

Since: May 19, 2010
Posted on: July 30, 2011 4:33 pm

UCLA's Rick Neuheisel optimistic about the season

It's part of Neuheisel's job to be optimistic.  If you don't expect the best out of your team, they won't either.  
And its our job to be realistic. He is in a fantasy world. Much like when he first blew into town, amidst scandal and ethical question marks, to claim that UCLA was now the new dyansty. He probably meant to say he liked to watch Dynasty.

UCLA is years if not decades away from being a power in L.A. Period.

Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: July 30, 2011 12:42 pm

Rick Neuheisel is always optimistic

It's part of Neuheisel's job to be optimistic.  If you don't expect the best out of your team, they won't either.  

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