Howland's Status at UCLA in Question

Bruin Report Online has learned where Coach Ben Howland currently stands in terms of his future at UCLA...

UCLA is currently leaning toward replacing Ben Howland as its head basketball coach, and he could be let go before the end of the season, according to sources.

There is also an indication that UCLA has taken preliminary steps in investigating potential coaching candidates.

The tipping point came a few weeks ago, after UCLA had lost three of five games at the end of November and beginning of December.

Sources are indicating that booster and donation support of Howland has diminished considerably so far this season, and that has been critical in this development.

This is not to say that it's completely certain that UCLA will fire Howland, however. As long as Howland remains the coach, there is always the possibility that he could turn around the season and be successful enough to make it implausible for the UCLA administration to fire him.

Insiders have indicated that UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero has taken a fairly hard line in his opinion of the state of the basketball program, and that he is expressing a strong sense of urgency to re-establish UCLA as one of the perennial powers in college basketball. The indication is that, if Howland is let go, Guerrero intends to aggressively pursue some of the top coaching candidates in the college basketball world.

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