UCLA Football Head Coach Jim Mora does not like the Thursday night college football game and he let it be known in his press conference after the Bruins loss to the Arizona State Sun Devils, 38-23.
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The UCLA Football team just experienced their first loss of the season, falling to Arizona State 38-23, and Jim Mora is not making any excuses for it. He talked about how the Bruins have to get better and learn from the loss and “own it.” And not just him, but the coaching staff, the players and everyone involved with the team. They all have to improve.
Yet that was not what he seemed to be the most passionate about in is post-game presser.
As he has done before, Mora got defensive about his players and the rigors they have to go through as student-athletes.
When asked if he “put anything into the equation of emotion through the course of the week”, the Bruin coach started by saying that there are a lot of new things happening to them as a mix of both injuries and the beginning of school is splitting the focus of his players.
That lead to his stance on Thursday night games.
"…It doesn’t get any easier for us, you know? Now we got two Thursday night games, which to me is unbelievable that we are calling these kids “student-athletes” and yet we are going to force them to miss six days of school so they can play two football games on Thursday nights in a row. I think it truly is an injustice. Our kids, after the Cal game, they are going to have midterms starting on Monday and they are going to have gone to class four days out of ten, so its going to be a real grind for us these next two weeks."
He was not done.
After he finished off his take on his players, he then came straight out with it, “I have a real problem with the two Thursday night games in a row. I think it is a complete injustice to our young men. I don’t know who’s idea it was but it was a bad idea.”
Mora has a point. It is one thing to stretch out the week with a Thursday night game, but to have two, not just in a season, but in consecutive weeks is absurd. This is not a professional league with the advantage of focusing solely on football. These players have to juggle school with all of their athletic commitments and the scheduling adminstrators need to take this into consideration.
This is something that I do not think we have heard the last of, especially from Mora. Here is the video