College football squads have traditions, but this isn’t one I’d heard of before at UCLA: “Over the Wall” day, where players, after stretching, run and jump over the wall at Spaulding Field and leave practice for the day. Slick Rick had asked the seniors not to do it this year — yet they did.
The decision to go “over the wall,” said to have been organized by seniors, will probably cost the Bruins a day of spring practice, although Neuheisel was going to check with the NCAA whether he could get the day back.
If not, the lost day of practice might come in handy with a new offense and questions about the offensive line. It also left a handful of potential recruits and visiting high school coaches with no practice to observe. This was also a day the team was practicing in full pads in advance of Friday’s scrimmage.
Neuheisel, who has already been marking the days until the Bruins’ season opener against Tennessee on Sept. 1, grudgingly cited it as a case of college tradition.
Still, Neuheisel said, “I don’t want to make too big a deal of it. It is what it is and there are still plenty of days left in spring to get the improvement that we need.”
Problem is, the records that the Bruins have put up in the past few years under Dorrell aren’t exactly meriting of a continuation of such a tradition. Not exactly the way a new head coach wants to start when he’s supposed to lay the law down in Westwood, particularly with a serious offensive line deficiency and a new offensive system to put in.
Photo: Liz O. Boylan/Los Angeles Times