Now that Jim Mora the Younger has become the head coach at UCLA, he has to recruit kids to come play for him. He immediately targeted some of the college prospects from the Atlanta area, given that he spent several seasons there as coach of the Falcons.
And he has a hook based on the chronic inability of the Dirty Birds to realize success in the playoffs.
“The bottom line is this: The last time the Falcons won a playoff game, I was the head coach,” Mora told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Kids remember that game, the 47-17 victory over the St. Louis Rams. A lot of kids around Atlanta, the state of Georgia and the Southeast follow the Falcons. They know that was the last time that the Falcons have won a playoff game.”
“So kids are interested with that connection to the Falcons, and the parents are interested in that, too. They all wonder why the Falcons haven’t won a playoff game since, and I can’t answer that question. For all the success that the Falcons have had since we left, they still haven’t won a playoff game — and that resonates with people.”
It’s the latest example of Mora’s ability to be blunt and brutally honest. In fact, if he didn’t possess that blessing/curse, he’d possibly still be coaching the Falcons. After all, it was a shockingly candid radio interview regarding his desire to return to the Seattle area — and his willingness to dump the Falcons if an opportunity arose at the University of Washington — that contributed to his dismissal.