View from the Hot Seats
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Steve's a little younger than I am. He's like I was when I got my
first job; this is my last one. I'm smelling the roses, baby. I'm
enjoying it. Steve is young and single, I see a lot of me in him
when I was that age. But he's trying to prove himself like we all
are and I think there will come a point in his life when he'll take
up golf or enjoy his life a little bit more than he does right now.
He's working his fanny off and he's doing a great job. But I think
he'll realize, once he gets in more of a comfort zone, that "I'm
going to enjoy my life, too."
What you have to understand, too, is the way in which I inherited
the program made it a necessity to kind of make it more stable.
I was named the interim coach a week before the first season, so
what the program has needed is to calm the waters. But eventually
to think about a home, about being married and having kids and a
more balanced life, a life more like my parents'. They raised six
children and are enjoying their retirement. That's ultimately what
you're trying to do, just like the student athletes that come here
to build that foundation in your career so some day you can
enjoy what you've done.
broad-based Bruin family, they understand what college athletics
are supposed to be about, which is developing a total person. Not
just an athlete who can catch passes or hit a jump shot, but a total
person who is hopefully better prepared for life after his UCLA
experience. As much as they want to beat USC or win a national championship,
they also understand there is a bigger picture than just that. They
want both, obviously, and that's our goal as well win the
games and develop good people. People who read this magazine and
who have come through UCLA and have a sense of how special this
place is our job is to uphold that tradition. There is an
incredible standard of excellence, not only currently but also historically.
Our job is to keep that going.