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Word From Westwood - Apr. 16, 2013
Courtesy: UCLA Athletics  
Release:  04/23/2013

Word From Westwood

Apr. 16, 2013

Beginning tomorrow (April 17), many UCLA fall sports teams will be adding reinforcements to their rosters for the coming years, courtesy of the annual late signing period.

There are undoubtedly some all-conference or All-America selections who will sign during this period. Be sure to keep an eye on UCLABruins.com to see who our teams add to the mix, and then get ready to follow those student-athletes throughout their careers in Westwood and beyond ...


Final Preparations Underway for NCAA Gymnastics Championships in Pauley
The new competition mat has been laid down in Pauley Pavilion and workers have begun to transform the arena from the home of the Bruins to an NCAA Championship venue. That can only mean one thing -- the long-anticipated 2013 NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championships are just a few days away, and the Bruins need the support of each and every one of you in the stands.

The competition in the first-ever NCAA Championship contested in the renovated venue will get underway Friday at noon (PT) in the first semifinal, featuring No. 1 seed Florida, No. 4 Georgia, No. 5 LSU, No. 8 Minnesota, No. 9 Stanford and No. 12 Illinois. As host, UCLA takes part in the second semifinal at 6 pm that night, alongside No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 3 Alabama, No. 7 Michigan, No. 10 Utah and No. 11 Arkansas.

The top three finishers in each semifinal round will meet in the finals on Saturday at 4 pm, while the individual champions will be determined on Sunday afternoon.

All-session and single-session tickets are on sale now. For information to purchase tickets, please call the UCLA Central Ticket Office at 310-UCLA-WIN (825-2946) or visit uclabruins.com/tickets.

Spring Game at the Rose Bowl is Fast Approaching
Don't forget that the annual Spring Football game is officially less than two weeks away! The game will be played on Saturday, April 27, at 5 pm at the Rose Bowl.

Rose Bowl gates will open at 4 pm, but parking lots open at noon so Bruin fans will have the chance to fine-tune their barbecuing skills before the season begins next fall. At 1 pm, the Bruin Fan Zone and Kids Zone, located along Arroyo Boulevard and featuring food trucks, live music the UCLA Store and the Bruin Kids Club Inflatable Zone for kids, will open. In addition, post-game festivities include an autograph session on the field and a spectacular fireworks show.

Admission to the game is free. Parking is $15 per car, so please plan accordingly.

Petros and Money Planning Visit to UCLA on April 22
The Petros and Money Show will be airing a special, "LA-only" version of their radio program live from Spaulding Field next Monday, April 22.

The show will air exclusively on the radio home of the Bruins, AM 570, FOX Sports LA from 3-7 pm PT and will feature several guests, including head football coach Jim Mora and other notable members of the Bruin Family.Plan to be a part of the special afternoon of Bruin football on Spaulding Field now.

Football Select-a Seat Returns to the Rose Bowl on May 4-5
Each spring, UCLA football season ticket holders have the chance to change or improve their seat locations for the upcoming season by attending the annual in-stadium Select-a-Seat event. This opportunity is scheduled for the weekend of May 4-5 at the Rose Bowl and is by invitation only.

Invitations are being mailed out to all renewed accounts this week, so be sure to check your mailbox. Season ticket holders attending Select-a-Seat will also be treated to a behind the scenes look at the Rose Bowl Press Room, UCLA's Locker Room and will walk through the tunnel to take the field, just like the Bruins.

Click here for a map indicating the 2013 season pricing and donation levels for new purchases or seat relocations. Please note that in recognition of their loyalty to UCLA Athletics, all 2012 UCLA Football season ticket holders may renew their existing priority seat locations based upon their 2012 Wooden Athletic Fund donation level.

For season ticket or Select-a-Seat questions, please call Select-a-Seat Information Line (310) 206-5991 or the Wooden Athletic Fund (310) 206-3302.

Men's Volleyball Hosts MPSF Playoff Match Saturday
Following a 3-0 sweep of crosstown rival USC last Friday in front of a crowd of more than 2,000 raucous fans to conclude the regular season, the #4-ranked UCLA men's volleyball team will host Pepperdine in the quarterfinals of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament this Saturday.

The #4-seeded Bruins 20-10 (16-8 MPSF) will host the #5-seeeded Waves 14-11 (13-11 MPSF) at 7 pm at the Wooden Center. UCLA swept Pepperdine 3-0 in each of the matches between the two teams, one in Malibu (February 23) and the other in Westwood (April 10).

To purchase tickets for the match, please click here or call the UCLA Central Ticket Office at 310-UCLA-WIN (825-2946).


Special Celebration of Jackie Robinson Day for UCLA
Prior to the UCLA-LMU baseball game Sunday afternoon, the Bruins unveiled a beautiful mural of Bruin legend Jackie Robinson along the first base concourse of the stadium that bears his name, and hosted a pre-game ceremony honoring Robinson's achievements.

In commemoration of Jackie Robinson Day, UCLA junior outfielder Brenton Allen was joined by mural artist Mike Sullivan and former UCLA pitcher Tim Leary in saying a few words about Robinson's legacy before the mural was unveiled. To see a quick video of the unveiling, click here.

The Bruins took two of three games from the Lions over the weekend to improve to 22-10 overall and will be on the road this week at UC Irvine (Tuesday) and Oregon (Friday-Sunday).

UCLA Loses a Member of the Bruin Family with Oscar Cabrera's Passing
Bruin football lost a family member last Friday in offensive lineman Oscar Cabrera. Oscar started 28 games in his career, which spanned the 1997-2000 seasons.


He shared the huddle with quarterback Cade McNown. He shared the offensive line with the likes of Kris Farris, Andy Meyers, Chad Overhauser and Shawn Stuart. He also served as co-captain of the 2000 squad, along with Kenyon Coleman. He was part of the school's longest win streak, a glorious 20-game stretch in the 1997 to 1998 seasons.

He was on teams which twice finished first in the Pac-10 Conference and advanced to play in the Cotton and the Rose Bowls. He paved the rushing lanes for two of the school's most productive running backs in DeShaun Foster and Skip Hicks. As a senior, he was recognized as an honorable mention all-conference selection, The Most Outstanding Lineman at the Sun Bowl and with the N.N. Sugarman Award for Best Leadership.

His list of achievements did not start, nor end, here at UCLA. He graduated from Los Angeles' Franklin High School where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball. He earned All-City honors in football and baseball. He helped lift his 1994 baseball team to a 2-1 win in the 3A City Championship Game in Dodger Stadium, stroking a game-winning double to drive in the deciding run.

A loving family will carry on his determination and will to succeed. Those interested in making a donation to the Cabrera family, should please direct it to Wells Fargo Bank, account #9765354981.

Olympic Sports Report

  • The #2-ranked men's tennis team posted a pair of 7-0 home victories over Washington and Oregon last week to improve to 20-1 overall and 6-0 in the Pac-12. More importantly, UCLA now takes a perfect conference record into this Friday's showdown against cross-town rival USC, and can claim the Pac-12 regular-season title with a victory. The match will take place at UCLA's Los Angeles Tennis Center at 3 pm.
  • The #4-ranked women's water polo team improved to 24-4 on the year with a 12-5 win over #11 Loyola Marymount last Friday and then swept a doubleheader against Cal Baptist (12-7) and Pomona-Pitzer (22-5) Saturday. The Bruins host USC (20-1, 4-1) in their final MPSF regular season game this Friday at 5 pm at Spieker Aquatics Center.
  • The #5-ranked men's golf team placed second at the Western Intercollegiate over the weekend in Santa Cruz. Meanwhile, UCLA senior Pedro Figueiredo won the individual title with a final round 68 (-2). The victory was Pedro's second this season and third of his UCLA career. The Bruins and USC meet this Thursday morning at Bel Air Country Club in Los Angeles.
  • The #6-ranked women's golf team finished eighth at the PING/ASU Intercollegiate in Tempe, Arizona over the weekend. Sophomore Erynne Lee fired a final round 66 (-6) to lead the team and tie for second individually. The Bruins will host the Pac-12 Women's Golf Championship beginning Mon., Apr. 22 at Valencia Country Club.
  • The #6-ranked women's tennis team was victorious in its only match last week, as the Bruins notched a 6-1 win over Oregon in Eugene on Friday. UCLA closes out the regular season this Thursday at USC. That match can be seen live on the Pac-12 Networks beginning at 3 pm. (singles only).
  • The #6-ranked sand volleyball squad dropped a close decision to #2 Long Beach State before falling to #1 Pepperdine last Wednesday in Malibu. The Bruins face their final regular-season events of their inaugural year this weekend, taking part in the USA Volleyball Invitational in Hermosa Beach on Saturday and Sunday.
  • Following a rare week off, the #7-ranked rowing team returns to action at the Clemson Invitational this weekend, competing on both Saturday and Sunday.
  • The #19-ranked softball team defeated #8 California in a Pac-12 series last weekend, winning two-of-three games in walk-off fashion. The Bruins head to Tucson this weekend to face Arizona for a Thursday-Saturday series, with Thursday's game on ESPN2, Friday's on ESPNU and Saturday's on Pac-12 Networks.
  • The #12-ranked men's and #21-ranked women's track and field teams competed Saturday in the 27th Pomona Pitzer Invitational. Bruin sprinter Brea Buchanan ran a meet record and personal best 13.17 seconds on her way to a victory in the women's 100m hurdles. Her mark was one of three event victories for the Bruins, the other two coming from the men's 4x400 relay team (3:12.41) and Kylie Price in the women's 100m dash (11.47). Meanwhile, the NCAA's top-ranked discus thrower Julian Wruck dominated the discus field at the Australian Athletics Championships in Sydney. Wruck claimed the title Saturday with a throw that covered 66.32m/217-7ft. For the fourth consecutive week, Wruck's mark is the best in the world this year and a school record.

Thoughts from the Athletic Director

After several months of planning, Athletics co-hosted (with the Department of Cultural and Recreation Affairs) two on-campus events yesterday. One was geared towards UCLA staff and the other towards UCLA students. The main topic was eradicating homophobia and bullying in the UCLA campus community and beyond. These events were part of a week-long campus initiative called UCLA Ally Week which aims to spread awareness, education, and information about the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender communities and what it means to support the LGBT community as an "ally."

At the coaches/staff event, six panelists and a moderator (who made up a diverse group of individuals) led a jam-packed JD Morgan Center Press Room through their own experiences and how that has shaped their views on how to move forward to promote inclusiveness in the sporting community. The panel was both thought-provoking and inspiring. The bottom line was creating an atmosphere of respect for all individuals...an effort that starts with our coaches and staff.

UCLA assistant softball coach Kirk Walker was a panelist in the coaches/staff session, and he stressed the importance of such a program at UCLA: "Creating a visual and physical example of acceptance and inclusion for our student-athletes is an infinite positive for UCLA Athletics. UCLA's athletic department has always been a leader in social equality, going back to the days of Jackie Robinson, Rafer Johnson, Arthur Ashe and the pioneers of Title IX. It is only fitting that UCLA also be a prime example for other peer institutions on the inclusion and acceptance of LGBT student-athletes."

The student event later that evening included UCLA student-athletes as well as those who are recreational or club sport athletes and the group engaged in healthy discussions about supporting members of their team and spreading that message to the various constituents around them. Among many valuable lessons, the panel emphasized that a team dynamic of inclusion and diversity not only enhances camaraderie off the field, but more often than not, improves a team's performance on the field as well, both as a group and individually.

At the conclusion of each event, attendees were encouraged to sign a pledge to become UCLA Athlete Allies and "take a stand against homophobia and bullying in sports and recreation, and also bring the message of respect, inclusion and equality to their athletic, sports and recreation community." There is still much more work to be done in this frontier, but I was extremely proud that the Bruins were part of this initial discussion to respect and welcome all persons.

Several of our student-athletes and coaches also created an impactful video about what it means to be an UCLA Athlete Ally, to watch that, please click here.

Go Bruins!

Dan Guerrero
UCLA Athletic Director

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