Tuesday, May 11, 2010

UCLA Breaks Ground on Transformation of Pauley Pavilion

By Bruin Basketball Report

Signaling the start of the transformation of one of the nation's most famous athletic and student-use facilities, UCLA Chancellor Gene Block and UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero today led the groundbreaking celebration for the renovation of Pauley Pavilion.

Hundreds of excited students, faculty, alumni and Bruin supporters gathered to witness the milestone event, cheering as Block, Guerrero, Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Janina Montero, student-athlete Anna Li, and Matt Pauley, grandson of the arena's namesake, Edwin Pauley, picked up blue and gold shovels to turn over a patch of ground on the east side of Pauley Pavilion.  

"The next chapter in the illustrious history of Pauley Pavilion begins today," Block said. "This project ensures that the legacy of Pauley Pavilion will live on in the 21st century."  

The groundbreaking on the 33-month construction project takes place exactly one year to the day after the official launch of the Campaign of Champions, the $100 million fundraising effort for the Pauley Pavilion project.

"We are extremely grateful for the groundswell of support from more than 600 donors who have rallied around this legendary arena," Guerrero said. "Their gifts and pledges of more than $65 million have enabled us to begin construction and make the dream of a revitalized Pauley Pavilion a reality. But we have not yet reached our goal and invite Bruins everywhere to participate in the Campaign of Champions."

UCLA has partnered with the Los Angeles office of NBBJ, a leading global architecture and design firm, to transform Pauley Pavilion into a state-of-the-art, multi-purpose facility. The project will entail long overdue infrastructure and amenities improvements on the 1965 building, including major seismic and life-safety upgrades, improved seating access by evening out the steps and creating wider pedestrian concourses, modern locker rooms, and training facilities that UCLA's outstanding student-athletes deserve. 

Matt Pauley, co-chair of the Campaign of Champions said, "I know that my grandfather would be very happy to see that this project preserves the most beloved and unique elements of Pauley Pavilion while creating new luster for the building with outstanding design and amenities. It also ensures that the fantastic tradition of Pauley Pavilion will be preserved for the next generation of the extended UCLA community."

Through a competitive bid process on construction, the cost of the project has been reduced from an original estimate of $185 million to $136 million. International construction company PCL, which has worked on major arena projects, including the Staples Center, Key Arena and the Air Canada Centre, will serve as the general contractor. PCL also has experience working on the UCLA campus as the general contractor for the Spieker Aquatics Center, the Life Sciences Building and the Northwest Campus Housing Project.

The $136 million project will be funded through a variety of sources: $100 million from private gifts; $21 million in long-term debt backed by the athletic department general operating budget; and $15 million from an existing annual fee paid by UCLA students to help fund earthquake and life-safety upgrades to student facilities.

When the transformed Pauley Pavilion opens its doors, the UCLA community will have a world-class experience that includes:

  • Better home-court advantage, with an all-new seating bowl with better sightlines and viewing angles, as well as high-comfort, padded seats. 

  • The addition of new, retractable seats that will bring fan seating on the arena level closer to the action for all events.

  • A digital scoreboard featuring high-definition video and instant replay, an enhanced sound system and a message ribbon board encircling the arena.

  • A new Nell and John Wooden court.

  • New subterranean building, with top-notch locker rooms, a much needed film room and a student-athlete lounge.

  • New and more restrooms, as well as new concessions with expanded eating options.

  • New aisle ways and handrails to help fans and disabled visitors reach their seats more safely and easily.   

  • Compliance with all current fire and safety codes. 

  • A new glass-enclosed exterior concourse for a grand entrance worthy of our great UCLA tradition.

  • A new Pavilion Club.

The refurbished facility will be available for programming by the UCLA Department of Cultural and Recreational Affairs, which operates Pauley Pavilion for the benefit of the entire campus. For example, student intramural sports teams utilize Pauley Pavilion.

"It's amazing that we're able to use Pauley Pavilion for so many activities," said Tim Mullins, a student elected by peers to serve on the student government's Facilities Commission and a two-time chair of the John Wooden Center Board of Governors. "There aren't many universities where students can attend a basketball game one night and the next day play intramural sports in the same building, and later graduate during commencement ceremonies in Pauley Pavilion. It needs an upgrade so that future generations of students can benefit from it too."

The first phase of exterior construction began in April 2010. Following the conclusion of the 2010–11 basketball season, the arena will be closed for interior construction. The transformed Pauley Pavilion is scheduled to re-open in fall 2012.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Bruin Recruiting: Prep News Roundup (5/10)

By Bruin Basketball Report

Prep News Roundup is published every Monday.  


Graduating high school early, or "reclassifying," might not yet qualify as a trend, but it's not an underground movement, either. Once the idea came up -- Matt Carlino's father said it was first suggested by UCLA coaches once his son reopened his recruitment by rescinding a commitment to Indiana in March -- research made the family decision easier. "I don't know a lot of people with kids who would turn that down," Mark Carlino said. "You take a trip to UCLA and see what it is academically and athletically. It was an opportunity knocking, and Matt has chosen to go through that door. "You forgo your senior year, and Bloomington South is a phenomenal school and program. They would have had a very good chance to compete for the state championship, but at the same time Matt's dream has always been to play college basketball at the highest level, and there it was sitting in front of him." ESPN 5/4


Oregon might not have won the news conference with its hiring of Dana Altman, but the new coach is reportedly victorious in a recruiting battle that resulted in an important commitment from point guard Johnathan Loyd, who is the state of Nevada's player of the year.  Signing the 5-foot-9 Loyd would give the Ducks another diminutive point guard after losing senior Tajuan Porter. But really, they're in need of players at this point after Ernie Kent didn't bring in anyone in the early signing period and three of his players received scholarship releases.  ESPN 5/3

Branden Dawson, a 6-foot-6 wing from Lew Wallace High School in Gary, Ind., flew somewhat under the radar at the star-studded Jayhawk Invitational. He didn’t make the all-tournament team, but did score 26 in one game. “I’d never been to Kansas. The atmosphere here ... I love it,” Dawson said. “The fans here ... they love to win.” He said he’d love to add KU to a list of schools that consists of Purdue, Indiana, Georgetown, UCLA, Marquette and Michigan State. “I want to say, ‘What’s up? Why haven’t you contacted me?’’’ he said with a big smile. LJ World 5/4

Signs indicate Washington will secure elusive five-star basketball recruit Terrence Jones, but it's taking longer than coach Lorenzo Romar anticipated. "We have not gone this long (pursing recruits) since we've been here, with this many options in the spring," he said Monday. "Usually we've been done in the fall." Jones, a McDonald's and Jordan Classic All-American, is worth the wait. Over the past few days, the Huskies received positive news out of Oregon, suggesting the 6-foot-9 forward from Portland's Jefferson High will play at UW next season. Seattle Times 5/5

Forwards David and Travis Wear’s surprise decision to transfer after only one season in Chapel Hill makes the Tar Heels deep on the outside and thin in the middle. "We are extremely disappointed that David and Travis are leaving the program," UNC coach Roy Williams said in a prepared statement. "I love both kids and they would have been very important parts of our team next season. It is a significant blow to our team as we had four post players and now we are down to two." Williams had met with the brothers during mid-April to discuss their off-season development plans, and the twins apparently gave no indication that they planned to return home to Huntington Beach, Calif., after exams and not return. Williams learned the news via a phone call from the Wears’ father on Wednesday night. Charlotte Observer 5/6

David and Travis Wear, twin forwards who helped Santa Ana Mater Dei High win two state championships, are transferring from North Carolina and are expected to draw significant interest from UCLA. The Wears, who are both 6 feet 10, will have three years of remaining eligibility. Both strongly considered UCLA and Arizona out of high school before signing with the Tar Heels. North Carolina announced Thursday the Wears would transfer. Their father, David Sr., said he could not comment on potential landing places for his sons until North Carolina filed paperwork officially releasing them from their scholarships, but he added, "I would imagine UCLA would be interested." LA Times 5/6

The 6-foot-6, 205-pound Branden Dawson was stellar on Saturday at Franklin High School, leading his SYF Players team into the quarterfinals of the Indiana State AAU Tournament. “I am just out here trying to get better,” said Dawson, who had games of 19 and 18 points. “I have improved a lot since last year, but I know I need to improve more.” Dawson has a solid list of schools: Purdue, Michigan State, Indiana, Marquette, UCLA and Georgetown. He said that they are “all equal” and that he likely won't make a decision on a school until next spring. “The college thing has been cool,” he said. “I am still open right now. I won't make an early decision.” Journal Courier 5/9