UCLA athletics has had a problem with laying a solid foundation of success in both basketball and football, which is why they have continually failed to win anything of significance. Hopefully, that is changing.
After watching the New England Patriots take down the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII, a question came to into my head. How are championship teams made (and in regards to UCLA Athletics, are not made)?
Though I’m not a huge supporter of the Rams, I do like what Los Angeles has done to construct a Super Bowl worthy-team in a very short span of time.
In only his second season, head coach Sean McVay took the Rams to their first Super Bowl since 2002. Despite the loss, they have become one of the best teams in the NFL and this is because they have created a solid foundation which will help them compete for NFL championships in the years to come.
Similarly (though they are a lot more down the road than the Rams are), the New England Patriots stay at the top of their game because of how they have constructed their team, manage to keep the core intact, develop players, and evolve where needed. This is the reason they are one of the greatest dynasties in all of sports.
UCLA is familiar with this feeling, but it has been a long time, especially for the revenue sports.
This is something that has evaded both the UCLA football and basketball programs in recent
years decades. The football team has not had a national championship since 1954 and has not captured a Pac-12 title since 1998. The UCLA basketball team has done slightly better, but not by much. Though the Bruins have not had a national championship in over 20 years, they have been successful regionally as they last won a regular season Pac-12 championship in 2013 and a tournament championship in 2014. Unfortunately, that was before the last guy that was fired.