March 20, 2012
With this being finals week, our student-athletes have a little bit of a break from competition to complete their studies for the quarter. All indications are that it's shaping up to be yet another successful quarter academically. Kudos to our student-athletes and our academic support staff for all the hard work they have put in.
I'd also like to recognize our finalists for the annual UCLA Scholar-Athlete Award, which is presented to the male and female graduating student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA: Charney Burk (women's soccer), Jeff Locke (football), Aisha Gerber (gymnastics), Nick Meister (men's tennis), Isabel Williams (women's swimming & diving) and Mark Weber (men's track & field). These six individuals are true standouts both in the classroom and in their field of play and should be commended.
The Dodgertown Classic is always a fantastic event, and this year's was no exception. Thanks to the Dodgers and to their Chief Revenue Officer Michael Young, a UCLA baseball and football alum, for hosting this amazing event once again. I also want to thank Jeff Moorad, CEO of the San Diego Padres, for making the trip to Dodger Stadium to spend some time with our donors and fans.
· #1-ranked women's tennis traveling to Colorado and Utah for matches this weekend
· Gymnastics (#4 in the nation) taking the #1 seed into the Pac-12 Championships in Salt Lake City
· Men's track & field hosting Texas in its first home dual meet of the young outdoor season
· #17 softball heading up the 101 for a game at UCSB on Sunday after almost two weeks off
There are also a few highlights from last week worth noting:
· #1-ranked women's water polo extending their winning streak to nine matches
· #3-ranked men's volleyball sweeping Pepperdine to capture the Kilgour Cup
· Men's tennis (#4) avenging a loss to Baylor in last year's NCAA Tournament with a 6-1 victory
· Women's swimming and diving setting a trio of school records at the NCAA Championships, and senior swimmer Yasi Jahanshahi taking home All-America honors in the 100 and 200 fly
On a sad note, three Bruin greats passed away recently: UCLA Hall of Fame track & field standout Bob Day, tennis player and long-time supporter Mike Kreiss, and volleyball player and coach Greg Giovanazzi. Bob was an NCAA Champion for us in the mile in 1965 and helped lead us to the team national championship in 1966, set several school and collegiate distance records, and is still considered one of the best distance runners UCLA has ever produced. In addition, he competed in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. Mike was a member of our 1970 and 1971 NCAA Championship teams and an All-American in 1972. The Kreiss family has been such an important part of the tennis program for many years. Mike's brothers, Bob and Tommy, also played here, as did his sons, Nick and Loren, and his nephew, Taylor. Greg was a member of the 1976 NCAA Championship team and also played on the 1977 and 1978 teams. In addition, he served his alma mater as an assistant coach with both the men's and women's teams, including when both won the national championship in 1984. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families and loved ones.
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Director of Athletics, UCLA