>UCLA Bruins

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With the games less than four hours away, let’s finish up our Final Four preview with the UCLA Bruins…

Logo: The script Ucla logo is one of the most recognizable logos in all of college athletics. It’s synonymous with championship basketball and you relate it to some of the greatest basketball players and teams of all time. I think that aesthetically it’s fine. It’s eye-catching, it has instant recognizability and it’s traditional. I just have never understood why one would script out an abbreviation. Did they at one point think they would be referred to as ucla as opposed to U C L A? If not, then why is the “U” capitalized and nothing else?

Their secondary logo (left) makes a ton more sense but it doesn’t have that traditional uniqueness that the script logo does.

One thing that I think is really interesting about the UCLA logo, color scheme and nickname is how all of the University of California system has kept or adopted the same scheme. All UC schools wear gold and blue, whether it be the navy of Cal Berkeley or the UCLA blue, and a few of them use a bear as their mascot including the UC-Riverside Highlanders whose logo consists of a bear in a tartan. I think it’s a very smart move by the UC system to give all of their schools a common bond.

Jerseys: With all three of the previous schools I talked about how they have fairly traditional jerseys. Except for Ohio State’s new look, nothing is too outlandish or wild and all three have done a good job to keep it modern but traditional. But nothing can compare to the traditional jerseys of UCLA. Other than a little higher quality stitching and an Adidas logo on the shorts, their jerseys haven’t changed a bit since before Lew Alcindor wore one. You have to respect that. I can’t imagine what it would be like if someone came in and tried to Nike-ize their jerseys. All hell would break loose. Thank god Adidas has their heads on straight.

Mascot: Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a decent picture of Joe and Josephine Bruin but really all you have to do is imagine Albert and Alberta or Freddie and Frieda as bears.

Cheerleaders: I’ve tried to approach the cheerleaders section of this preview with a little bit of class. The last thing I want to do is come off as some male chauvinistic pig salivating all over racy pictures of cheerleaders. I kind of wanted to present them in a way that commented on their choice of uniform and whether or not they were stunt oriented or generally just there to be eye candy. I didn’t expect to find initiation photos of the Georgetown dance team, that was a bonus.

But I knew coming into it that the UCLA cheerleaders wouldn’t be able to be presented without a little bit of chauvinistic pig. It is, after all, Los Angeles, what do you expect. So without further ado, I give you everything you need to know about the UCLA cheerleaders…

To be fair, having seen these ladies perform at a couple games, I can tell you that they are actually pretty talented dancers. Sure the Song Girls across town get all the publicity for being Song Girls, but the UCLA squad tears them apart in actual athletic, dancing ability.

Overall: UCLA is all about tradition and rightfully so. Despite my complaints about the logo, I do think it is very effective, the jerseys could never be improved upon, the mascots are a little boring but decent and the cheerleaders, well, who doesn’t like knee socks? Probably my favorite of the four teams both on the floor and off.

Team: UCLA Bruins
Conference: Pac-10
Location: Los Angeles, California
Arena: Pauley Pavilion (which surprisingly is a big dump)

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