Lane Kiffin, seen here pondering the ineffable integrity of the Coaches’ Poll. Probably. (AP)
Lovingly curated light reading to speed you through to the weekend:
There are a couple things happening in Los Angeles right now that we’re going to sort of mash together here. See if you can keep up, because both tales are of vital importance to your very existence.
• The part where Jim Mora is all “LOL USC is full of murders” and then has to act like he’s sorry he said that. So UCLA’s new head ballcoach tried the white salmon trick on the radio, at the expense of his crosstown rivals. Here we have to go straight to excerpting the L.A. Times story on the matter because we don’t want you to miss a word:
Mora, discussing recruiting on the Roger Lodge radio show, said he makes a point to tell parents how safe it is at UCLA, noting, “We don’t have murders a block from our campus.”
The murder of two Chinese graduate students near the USC campus in April became international news. But Mora said Thursday that he was speaking only about the UCLA campus. “I just said our campus is safe,” Mora said. “I didn’t say anything about anyone else’s campus. I just said it about our campus. I didn’t mention another campus. We don’t have anybody getting murdered a block off of our campus.
“If anybody, whether USC or Cal State San Bernardino, is offended by the statement, then that’s their insecurity, not mine.”
Mora later delivered something at least remotely resembling an apology, although we are not precisely sure why he bothered. If you’re the guy who’s OK insinuating to parents that their sons might be murdered if they sign with the Trojans, and then bring up that recruiting tactic on live radio, at least stick the landing. Own that. (It’s also worth noting that we are absolutely certain this kind of gambit is employed in recruiting all over the country — but that you don’t hear those guys bringing it up on the radio. Ten points from Hufflepuff, J-Mo.) And, more importantly for internetting purposes, why on earth would you leave yourself open to the obvious and scathing retort?