Here’s the perfect week-ending story.
The Los Angeles Times is reporting that UCLA football players are worried that head coach Chip Kelly will cut corners when it comes to COVID-19 safety.
After a virtual team meeting Thursday night, 30 UCLA football players united in support behind a document they believe will protect them in their upcoming return to campus amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The document, reviewed by the Los Angeles Times late Thursday, asserts that players do not trust coach Chip Kelly’s program to act in their best interest, particularly in regard to their health, a realm where it says UCLA has “perpetually failed us,” citing “neglected and mismanaged injury cases.” The document does not provide examples.
The players demanded that a “third-party health official” be on hand for all football activities to see that protocols for COVID-19 prevention are being followed; that anonymous whistleblower protections are provided for athletes and staff to report violations; and that each player can make a decision about whether to come back to Westwood without fear of losing his scholarship or other retaliation.
One UCLA player said the current mistrust within the program was due to a lack of communication and the age and experience gap between coaches and players. “We have people that grew up in a different community in America during a different time in America,” the player said. “There’s no common ground, no meeting ground to where these two people can sit down and attempt to understand each other.”
Chip has experienced some tough sledding in his two years at UCLA, compiling a record of 7-17 with home losses to Fresno State, Cincinnati, and San Diego State. The father of his starting quarterback called him a “lousy” play caller and he also had the Bruins do jumping jacks in the middle of a loss.
Have a fantastic weekend.