LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 13: Jim Mora speaks at a press conference introducing him as head UCLA football coach at the J.D. Morgan Center at UCLA on December 13, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

UCLA Coach Jim Mora Adds To Football Staff

Mora was 31-33 in four seasons as an NFL head coach, with the Atlanta Falcons and Seattle Seahawks.

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UCLA New Head Coach Jim Mora Jr. Speaks To Media

Jim Mora Jr. held his introductory press conference at UCLA today. It was his first day on the job, and he seemed anxious to get the ball rolling. The Q&A lasted fewer than 15 minutes, with a brief introductory statement and then a few questions from the crowd. Most of the concerned hinged on trying to figure out exactly what kind of coach the UCLA Bruins had just brought in. 

Mora began by stating his objective: 

"objective is simple. To make Bruin fans proud of their football team"

In what may have been a jab at his predecessor Rick Neuheisel and his campaign declaring the football monopoly in Los Angeles over, he said, "I don't want to stand up here today and make any bold predictions or make outlandish statements." He also conceded the fact that: 

"it's been a tough decade for UCLA football."

UCLA hasn't been awful over the last decade, going 56-57 with their last two coaches. However, that isn't meeting expectations in Los Angeles. Even in the 2005 10-2 season, they lost to USC and we're passed over for the Pac 10's #2 bowl bid, with the Holiday Bowl choosing Oregon and UCLA having to settle for the Sun Bowl. UCLA has only beaten USC once since the turn of the century. 

Still, Mora was high on UCLA football's prospects: 

"I say it's a sleeping giant in college football....I've always felt this was a program that you could build into a special place."

Of course, the first step in building a program is recruiting, and Mora was so excited about it he said he planned to start today. He admitted that "[recruiting] might be what he is most looking forward to the most." He was thrilled with the prospect of touching a young man's life, getting to have that impact. 

For more on Jim Mora, the Bruins, and why Powder Blue is the best shade of blue, visit Bruins Nation.


Chris Petersen Reportedly Turns Down Four Million Dollars To Coach At UCLA

Chris Petersen must really, really love Boise State University. Despite not playing in a BCS conference and being located in one of the more remote areas of the country, Petersen has continually turned down coaching gigs from bigger schools with deep pockets. After a few rumors suggesting he was considering a move to Los Angeles to coach the UCLA Bruins, they were quickly shot down by multiple sources.

We all knew the Bruins were interested in bringing Petersen to town, but no one knew they were this serious. According to the LA Times, the program was preparing to offer the head coach $4 million dollars a season, as well as providing $3 million to fill out his coaching staff.

Boise State Coach Chris Petersen is no longer a candidate for the UCLA football job, according to a person familiar with the situation who was not authorized to speak on the subject. Petersen had been target by UCLA officials after Rick Neuheisel was fired as the Bruins coach Monday.

UCLA offered Petersen a contract that would have paid him nearly $4-million per season, plus nearly $3 million for assistant coaches. Petersen, who has a 71-6 record at Boise State, decided to remain at Boise State because of lifestyle reasons. He has turned down other universities in the past, including a $3-million offer from Stanford last year, for the same reasons.

That's a whole lot of money to turn down. Petersen must really love the city of Boise (or the color blue), which isn't a bad thing at all. With today's wacky world of college coaches always jumping ship for what may seem like a better job, Petersen has stayed true to the Broncos.

UCLA will continue their coaching search and it will likely pick up once the Pac-12 conference championship wraps up. For more on the search, check out Bruins Nation.

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