View from the Hot Seats
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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 . . .
Like I've got to commute for an hour.
. . . 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.
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?
Heck no! You ever sat in the Rose Bowl?
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.
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.