UCLA vs. Minnesota, 2013 NCAA Tournament: Bruins fans want Ben Howland gone

Jamie Squire

Ben Howland doesn't appear to have much time left at UCLA as fans of the squad think he should be fired sooner rather than later.

For fans of one team, No. 11 Minnesota's win over UCLA kept hope alive for an interesting tourney run. For the other, it was likely the end of a coach's tenure.

The Golden Gophers pulled the upset - well, it was an upset in the eyes of whoever seeded the bracket, at least - and it wasn't particularly close. UCLA shot just 31 percent from the field and trailed by over 20 for a good portion of the game before losing 83-63.

For The Daily Gopher, it was an exciting win in a game in which the team heard it wasn't supposed to have much of a shot:

After a week of hearing about Shabazz Muhammad 's scoring abilities, listening to confident quotes from Travis Wear and wondering how Trevor Mbakwe would respond; turns out this game belonged to Andre Hollins. The sophomore guard lit up the arena with 28 points, 23 in the second half. Every time UCLA would make a run and the "here we go again" in the minds and hearts of Gopher fans, Dre was there to answer with a three. His total box score? 28 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists and just 1 turnover!

For UCLA, on the other hand, it was another loss for Ben Howland, who lost the Pac-12 Tournament final after winning the regular season title. The Bruins haven't won a tournament game since 2009, and at a program of the Bruins' caliber, that's the kiss of death for a coach, UCLA blog Bruins Nation writes:

It has been roughly 14 or so months since Bruins Nation as a whole decided that Ben Howland was no longer worthy of being the caretaker of Coach's program. We have documented his failure to live up to the legacy of Coach and of the greatest program in college basketball in countless posts over those many months and beyond. After yet another ugly blowout loss in the tournament, which has been Ben Howland's NCAA Tournament legacy, it could not be more clear that the decade of Howland is now at an end.

The site focused on how athletic director Dan Guerrero should act sooner rather than later if he wants his team to retain a shot of being competitive next season.

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