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UCLA Magazine Fall 2002
The Little Marias
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Great Expectations

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Fall 2002
Great Expectations
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Delivering the goods is something a lot of Bruins are expecting of Guerrero. He took the reins of the UCLA Athletic Department on July 1, replacing Pete Dalis ’59, M.A. ’63, who retired in June after a 19-year career. The pressure to excel at a university like UCLA — which leads the nation with 86 national championships and 108 conference titles — is exceedingly high, and Guerrero knows it.

But plenty of people also know that he can handle it.

“Dan will do an outstanding job as UCLA’s next director of athletics,” says Chancellor Albert Carnesale. “He knows that an athletic program must be successful in the classroom as well as on the field of competition. He is a former Bruin athlete, and it’s wonderful to welcome him home.”

Says Chancellor Ralph Cicerone of UC Irvine, where Guerrero served as athletic director for the last 10 years: “This is the pinnacle position, and it means that Dan has a great deal to live up to. But Dan is the real thing. He’s solidly grounded in what universities are all about. He has absolute reverence for the UC system, and for UCLA in particular. And he wants nothing but the best.”

Guerrero concurs: “The expectations people have for this program are the expectations that I have for the program. The greatest challenge is to maintain an intercollegiate athletics program at the highest levels of performance while still graduating student-athletes who maintain high standards for academic achievement.”

The key, he says, is fitting the right people to the organization, “and that is what you do when you hire coaches who understand the environment that exists at UCLA; they go out and they recruit athletes who will meet that profile for what is necessary to be successful both as students and as athletes.” Already the program is producing outstanding results in both areas, he says, but “I believe there’s always room for improvement, and we’ll be finding ways to make that happen.”

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