Originally posted on Fox Sports West  |  Last updated 8/9/12
LOS ANGELES ---UCLA head coach Jim Mora created quite a stir with comments he made during a local radio show Wednesday morning. During the interview, amongst other things, Mora talked about recruiting and how he discusses with parents the educational opportunities and safe environment at UCLA. "We don't have murders one block off of our campus," Mora said on AM830's The SportsLODGE. "It's a cocoon of safetiness." The comments were seen as insensitive considering two Chinese graduate students were murdered near the USC campus in April. During the Bruins' morning practice on Thursday, Mora defended his Wednesday morning statements. "I didn't say anything about anyone else's campus," Mora told the LA Times. "I just said it about our campus. I didn't mention another campus. We don't have anybody getting murdered a block off of our campus. "If anybody, whether USC or Cal State San Bernardino, is offended by the statement, then that's their insecurity, not mine." Mora later apologized before the Bruins hit the practice field for their evening session in San Bernardino saying he regretted making the statements and it was "Not my intention" to cause pain. When asked what he thought about Mora's comments, USC head coach Lane Kiffin said "I don't think that's something to joke about." Kiffin says safety only comes up in recruiting "When opposing coaches bring it up." "We have stats to point out to show the facts. Not opinions," Kiffin said. "We feel that the campus is very safe. It's very expensive to go here. A lot of people send their kids here from around the world. We feel that it's very safe." Mora's comments spark a debate about what's fair game in the world of recruiting. What's off limits? There's been plenty of reports about recruits being negatively pursued by another school. There was even one involving Kiffin, when as the Tennessee head coach, he allegedly told Alshon Jeffrey that if he went to South Carolina he would be "Pumping gas for the rest of his life." Kiffin denied the comments. As he addressed the media following Thursday's practice, he was adamant about USC not putting down other programs in recruiting. "We don't negative recruit," Kiffin said. "That message comes from the top. It comes from me to (our staff). There's no need to here at SC. Go in the house, get on the phone and talk about SC. There's so many things to talk about here as far as the school and the history of the football program. "It's the greatest place in the world and so there's no need to talk about other places. So, it's my belief that we don't do that and don't need to."
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