Thursday, May 17, 2007

Proud to be a Bruin

This week, the UCLA women's water polo team clinched the National Championship. Kudos to my fellow UCLA Bruins who can celebrate our 100th national sports championship. But what does that mean? Jeff Miller of the Orange County Register looks for the answer but I think he is asking the wrong question. This national championship continues a tradition of excellence in Westwood which permeates the entire University in athletics, academics, and research. Do not forget that these are student athletes. The average GPA of incoming freshmen is 4.2. The UCLA Medical Center is widely accepted as the best hospital in the West and their graduate programs are almost always in the top 20 nationally. So you say UCLA is not a football powerhouse? Okay, but do not miss out on the big picture. The basketball team has made it to the Final Four the last two years and they are primed to be a national powerhouse for years to come under Ben Howland. That is quite a boast since under modern competition no school will ever repeat a John Wooden-like era. This commitment to excellence is UCLA's contribution to young adults that they will take with them for the rest of their lives. As a life-long Bruin and graduate of the school I say thank you. A lot of other universities may encourage excellence but at UCLA there is a reason why they only hang championship banners in Pauley Pavilion.

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