Letters to the sport: Trojans could only go so far in the tournament

If Chick Hearn had called the USC Gonzaga game, he would have said that USC was playing “Matador Defense”. Gonzaga likely set a record for March Madness layups.

Vaughn Hardenberg


:: ::

What a sad portrayal of basketball by the USC Trojans against Gonzaga! Mistakes, sales and bad decisions of a star-laden team. It’s time for a change of coach – they need to fire Clay Helton.

Dennis Alekel

San Juan Capistrano

:: ::

The Trojans certainly picked a bad time to become the team we all thought they were. There are bad performances, but this one was epic. The team looked unprepared, nervous, confused, and uninterested. They shot terribly. Her defense was absent and her bench scored four points higher than me from my living room. Losing a game after playing hard is admirable. Losing a game in which you have no passion or competitive energy is shameful.

Geno Apicella


:: ::

Lou Christie’s song “Two Faces Have I” describes Dylan Hernandez perfectly. On game day, he predicts USC will beat Gonzaga, which touts their standout game in the NCAA tournament. The next day, after their defeat, he beats up the coach and players for not being ready.

Dylan, Gonzaga was undefeated for a reason. They are a superior team over USC. Give the Zags some credit and USC some credit for making Elite Eight. You write like you’ve never seen a basketball game. If you think Enfield should keep going, then maybe after your turn of sales, you should too.

Robert Bubnovich


:: ::

Perhaps Evan Mobley can get his father a job as an assistant on the NBA team that buys his services. It almost worked for USC.

Jon Udell

Santa Monica

:: ::

With the selection of UCLA and USC for long runs in the NCAA tournament, Bill Plaschke has proven once again that even a blind squirrel can find an acorn.

Dave Snyder

Big terrace

:: ::

UCLA in the Final Four and the basketball program is relevant again? Wow. I think the world is really starting to go back to normal.

Richard Turnage


:: ::

As someone who went to UCLA during John Wooden’s glory years, I was a little skeptical about hiring another defense-oriented coach and going back to the years of uninspired play at Howland. Choosing a coach who was available rather than desirable was also of great importance.

Well, after a trip to the Final Four without three of the starting players he was expecting this season, I warmed up pretty well to Coach Cronin. There will never be wood again, but after 45 years of waiting, we have finally found our trainer.

Don Geller


:: ::

The difference between good and great coaches: Good coaches win the games they are supposed to play. Great coaches win the games they are not. This is what sets Mick Cronin apart from most college basketball coaches.

Mike Murashige

Eugene, Ore.

:: ::

Flight to Indianapolis: $ 250

Hotel room: $ 300

Tickets to March Madness: $ 1,500

Bruins in the last four: PRICELESS!

Marty Zweben

Palos Verdes Estates

:: ::

When I traveled to Cincinnati with friends for a UCLA soccer game in 2019, the Cincinnati fans thanked us for taking Mick Cronin out of our hands. It is now my privilege to say that you are welcome.

Cronin has compiled an exhausted list of young men with big hearts ready to surprise the nation with a trip to the Final Four. He has anchored toughness, resilience and top-notch defense in a group of young men who chose his teaching at just the right time. With most of them returning and adding a highly rated class of newbies, the future of UCLA basketball is once again exciting and promising. Very indebted to Cincinnati.

Alan Abajian

Alta Loma

:: ::

UCLA’s win over Michigan reminded me of the mess the end of a basketball game is – endless downtime, deliberate fouls, free throws. Easily fix this as there are no timeouts allowed in the last two minutes and the dirty team is given a free time out option. Imagine the flowing ends that we would have.

David Wilczynski

Manhattan Beach

Play ball!

I very much welcome Bill Plaschke’s heady predictions for the Dodgers in the coming season. This analysis is more helpful than one might think. With Plaschke’s successes and failures over the years, I am confident that the team will not survive the first round of the playoffs and I will place my bets accordingly.

As always, thank you, Bill!

Stephen Mattson

The Bears

:: ::

Joe Maddon and Mookie Betts had the opportunity to lead the way in promoting the health of their teams and their fan base, but they struck out instead. Both were neutral on whether players should get the COVID-19 vaccine, which protects teammates and could help end this pandemic.

Maddon said, “He would never try to convince anyone one way or another.” Betts even refused to say if he had been vaccinated or planned to get the shot himself. You sent the absolutely wrong message. These vaccines are safe. They will save lives and prevent hospitalizations.

Now is not the time to be politically correct or to be afraid to take a stand. It is necessary to step on the plate for health reasons. Both of them have failed to fulfill their responsibilities as leaders to do their part to communicate what is needed for their team and fans to ultimately overcome this pandemic.

Richard Z. Fund

Sherman Oaks

:: ::

Sorry, Mookie. You are an idol. As such, it is your responsibility to use your celebrity to show impressive fans that vaccination helps society. This is not a personal choice; This is a national and global herd immunity imperative.

David Alpern

Long beach

:: ::

At certain times in each commissioner’s tenure, a decision emerges that will forever be tied to their legacy. Bart Giamatti will be remembered as the man who banned Pete Rose, Bud Selig as the man who canceled the World Series. Rob Manfred’s moment has now come when he decided to move the All-Star game from Atlanta.

Bill Waxman

Simi Valley

:: ::

Major League Baseball makes a mistake by moving the All-Star game to another location in 2021. Atlanta is a predominantly black metropolis that is financially punished by Major League Baseball, which advocates civil rights groups. MLB claims they are postponing the draft and all-star game due to new electoral law in Georgia requiring ID cards to be presented to vote. There is nothing “racist” in having to show a voting card in order to vote. ID is required when flying or buying alcohol. When a voter is required to present his or her ID to vote, not much is required to ensure electoral integrity.

Scott Benjamin

Agoura Hills

Bad moves?

Trending now in the NBA; Players who sign contracts and then simply decide they want to be traded or bought up so they can get a place on a competing team. These days there are only about 12-15 good teams, the rest goes through the movements.

Recent examples from Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge and Andre Drummond are upsetting this league.

Shame on the players and shame on the teams charging to buy a championship and while we’re at it, shame on Adam Silver for allowing the NBA to slowly implode.

Steve LaRochelle

Simi Valley


If I read The Times correctly, DeSean Jackson compared his signature with the Rams to LeBron James’ signature and returned to Cleveland, where he led the franchise to a championship.

I didn’t meet a man for the recording, although I feel somewhat too sure about Lloyd Bensonesque’s verdict: Mr. Jackson, you are not a LeBron James.

Konrad Moore

Pacific Beach

:: ::

The Los Angeles Times welcomes all views. Letters should be short and owned by the Times. They can be edited and republished in any format. Each must contain a valid mailing address and phone number. Pseudonyms are not used.


[email protected]

Comments are closed.