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Shame of a Nation
View From the Hot Seats
The Man Who Knows Too Much
The Culprit is Cancer

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Fall 1998
View from the Hot Seats
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SL: Academically, every time you step into a classroom, you're going against the top students in the world so that's going to bring out the best in you, just like when you line up against another All-American in practice. Another big point is the package. There are Ivy League schools like Princeton or Harvard, but here you can get a quality education that's on par with them, plus you have an athletic experience that is at a whole other level. At Duke you get a great basketball program and a great education, but you won't have the same social life or weather that we have here. So one way or another, UCLA is going to gain an edge on everybody in the country. When we talk to other coaches, they say we have the best jobs in the world. But there are trade-offs . . .

BT: Like I've got to commute for an hour.

SL: . . . cost of living, housing costs. But the reason coaches say that is that in one way or another, UCLA sets itself apart — academically, athletically, socially, weather, across the board. It's close to the beach, concerts at the Greek Theatre, Dodger, Laker games — it's all here.

You've both spoken before about the role of head coach vs. assistant and the amount of managing you've got to do as opposed to coaching. One thing no one can manage is others' expectations. Steve, do you think expectations of you are higher because you're coaching in the shadow of all those banners in Pauley?

SL: Heck no! You ever sat in the Rose Bowl?

BT: I wouldn't want Steve's job because those guys are just too close behind him. At least the fans are quite a ways away from me.

SL: Harrick had a couple death threats and bomb threats when I was an assistant and that's why the police escort us off the court and they've just continued. They stay with me all the way out to the car after a game. I tell them when we win, I don't need you guys. When we lose, get the bulletproof vests out.

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