I drafted a letter last week, after being at the Rose Bowl to see UCLA beat TN, 27-24, in a depressing, but exciting game. I was really disappointed in the UCLA fans for the three and a half quarters. They only seemed to realized that they were at a football game sometime in the fourth quarter.
But I waited too long to send the letter to the UCLA Athletics Dept. or to one of the local papers. Oh well...
Congratulations to the UCLA Bruins and Coach Neuheisel for an exciting win last night. The Bruin defense really kept their team in the game in the first half, and the offense came through when it mattered. The resilience of the football team was impressive.
Unfortunately, the experience at the Rose Bowl as a fan was anything but impressive. As a transplanted Volunteer fan, I was excited about the chance to see Tennessee play in the Rose Bowl. I was sitting in section 14 with five friends, tickets that I was told were in the visiting team section. In reality, it was a fair mix of Vol and Bruin fans. Bruin fans appear to believe that when you go to a football game, you sit down and donít raise your voice until the fourth quarter. My friends and I were on our feet cheering for most of the first quarter. That didnít sit well with the fans in our section, who called security over to tell us to sit down. We were rather incredulous when the supervisor told us we were not allowed to stand up again until halftime. Is that what passes for football excitement for UCLA? Iíve never been in a quieter stadium during a game in which neither team ever led by more than seven points.
The security supervisor was very cordial and told us that it was considered UCLA courtesy at the Rose Bowl to stay seated. I hope every Bruin fan who makes the trek to Knoxville next year realizes that they probably wonít be able to see much if they stay seated. If the football monopoly in Los Angeles is truly over, UCLA fans will need to be educated about how to cheer at a real football game.