Letters to Sports: Chip Kelly is to blame for UCLA's loss to USC

PASADENA, CALIF., NOV 19, 2022. UCLA head coach Chip Kelly on the sideline in the first half of the annual crosstown rivalry game against USC, played at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena on Saturday night, Nov. 19, 2022. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)
UCLA coach Chip Kelly on the sideline during the first half against USC. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

Lincoln Riley took less than a season to do what Chip Kelly hasn't done in five.

"D-T-R" has been lauded continuously by the fawning sports wags for besting career records at UCLA in five years, several of which records (Remember Brett Hundley?) were set in as few as three.

A defense without a coordinator for a month is going to play the way UCLA's has for most of this year. Since (Bill) McGovern's "illness" they've held only one team under 14 points — the worst offense in the conference (Stanford).

The Big Ten doesn't need another Indiana or Northwestern in its ranks. Letting the Trojans go alone may well be the only path UCLA has back to a Jan. 1 game in Pasadena, but Kelly has demonstrated he's not the one who can get them there.

Blaise Jackson



UCLA’s loss to USC was heartbreaking no matter who you were rooting for. With the best team they are likely to have for years, they came within a field goal of perhaps being Pac-12 champions.

Courtesy of Chip Kelly, that field goal came when he called time out to supposedly ice an already rattled USC kicker who missed a chip shot earlier and whose subsequent kick fell short. With time to regroup, he was able to bang it through for the game difference.

Kelly’s contract has over a $12-milion buyout if let go now, but it falls to zero after Dec. 15, 2023. Count on a new coach leading the Bruins into their new conference in 2024.

Bob Goldstone

Corona del Mar


Without Chip Kelly's stupid, unnecessary timeout request "to ice" the Trojans kicker (who had already missed two tries) with one second remaining in the first half, the game may have ended in a 45-45 tie at the end of regulation.

Noel Johnson



I'm totally surprised that Bill Plaschke hasn't sustained any serious injuries jumping off one bandwagon for another.

Phillip Trujillo



Here goes Plaschke again! A national title could be SC’s? LOL! UCLA’s defense (and SC’s as well) isn’t exactly conference or national leading so please crumple up and set out with the weekly trash any prospect of SC going to the big game.

Mike Aguilar

Costa Mesa


You can’t spell Plaschke without SC!

Mike Chiaromonte


Chipper mood

Now that UCLA has ended the regular season with a tremendous win over 4-8 Cal, I’m certain that there’s a pro team that would die for the chance to hire Chip Kelly. The Chargers might be a perfect spot for Mr. Defense, the Chipper. Bruins fans everywhere would wish Kelly the very best.

Fred Wallin

Westlake Village


With apologies to Fiddler’s Tevye, it is no shame to be mediocre, but it is no great honor either. UCLA AD Martin Jarmond’s accepting an invitation to play in a near-empty postseason Toilet Bowl, or whatever it's called, suffers not only from misleading UCLA’s football players into believing in the participation trophy syndrome but will ensure their continuing to be rewarded for mediocrity, while also likely increasing his department’s debt as UCLA fails to sell the tickets it must buy.

Richard Agay

Los Angeles

Raising white flag

Hey, Rams! Either find some better offensive linemen or give Matthew Stafford the rest of the year off. You’re gonna get that guy killed out there.

Mike Schaller

Temple City


Memo to copy editor: The headline on the Rams' story jump to Page 7, “Stafford leaves as Rams sink further,” you dropped the “t."

Robert Bryant

Huntington Beach


Could it be that the Detroit Lions had a better crystal ball than the Rams regarding the trade of Stafford for Goff? It sure is looking that way. Rams 3-7, Lions 4-6 and going in the right direction.

Russell Morgan


Plaschke support

Bill Plaschke’s column about Bruce Rollinson’s “retirement” as the longtime head football coach at Mater Dei High School is a sad commentary on the pernicious win-at-all-costs culture that appears to pervade at the institution. The virtues of integrity and accountability are apparently trumped there by a winning-is-everything ethos. The sworn testimony of the former athletic director says it all.

John Jacobs

Los Angeles


I seldom agree with Bill Plaschke, but his continued criticism of the administration of Mater Dei for doing little to punish those responsible for the numerous hazing incidents and its arrogant coach Bruce Rollinson deserve a strong applause. Good luck to the next football coach.

Ralph S. Brax



Like Plaschke, I feel quite sure that the retirement of Coach Rollinson was forced and part of an image reclamation project. I have nothing but disdain for Rollinson and for Mater Dei after all the moral and leadership failures by both. The institutional failure in particular stands in stark contrast to the core religious values they supposedly stand for. It seemed like a simple calculation: Winning is all that counts, with no concern about maintaining a moral standard or calling abusive behavior to account.

Now the coach and the school are defiantly silent about this "retirement" that has to be primarily about trying to bury the unsavory conduct of all involved, if they can.

TR Jahns


Reverse it

That sure looked like an interesting article about John Madden in Thursday's paper. It’s really too bad I was five pages past its continuance when I came to the beginning of the article. I really would have liked to read the rest of it.

At least the layout of the sports section is resulting in my spending less time reading the paper and following the teams.

John Snyder

Newbury Park

Beverley shills

If the NBA was truly interested in punishing the Lakers for Patrick Beverley's actions, instead of suspending Beverley for three games, the Lakers would be required to play him more minutes.

Robert Aragon



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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.