Posted September 08, 2013 on AP on Fox
UCLA coach Jim Mora and the 16th-ranked Bruins returned to football practice on Monday for the first time since the death of walk-on receiver Nick Pasquale. The team practiced in preparation for this weekend's game at No. 23 Nebraska. Pasquale was hit by a car and killed while walking in his hometown of San Clemente on Sunday. The 20-year-old receiver played in the final offensive series in UCLA's season-opening victory over Nevada on Aug. 31. The Bruins were off last weekend and Pasquale had gone home to visit his family. ''It's a very tragic time, a very difficult time,'' said Mora, who has a son close to Pasquale's age. The coach hailed Pasquale for being more than a player on the scout team. ''He was a kid who epitomized everything that you're looking for in a football player, from his spirit, his selfless work ethic, his commitment to the team, his toughness,'' Mora told a group of reporters. Mora spent time with the freshman's family on Sunday in San Clemente, where hundreds of Pasquale's friends, family members and fellow football players gathered at the high school's field for a vigil. Pasquale's older brother, A.J., played at the high school, where his father Mel Pasquale is director of football operations. ''Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, that's the most important thing,'' Mora said. He later told reporters, ''Every day we honor Nick and his family. The way we do that is the way we play. It's not about wins and losses.'' Mora said he was happy that Pasquale got into the season-opening victory. ''By us getting the lead that we did because of the fine work of some starters, guys like Nick, whose dream was to always play for UCLA, got a chance to run out on the Rose Bowl field and play in front of his parents,'' the coach said. ''That's something his parents will have forever.'' Mora closed all practices this week to the media, and UCLA players weren't made available for comment. ''Our players are dealing with it each in their own way,'' he said. ''We think that's the right way to do it. The important thing is they're together. This is a very close team and they care desperately about each other.'' Nebraska coach Bo Pelini said the university's thoughts and prayers were with Pasquale, his family, and UCLA. ''That's a lot bigger than any football game,'' he said. ''Obviously, this has got to be a very difficult time for them.'' The Bruins will wear a No. 36 patch on their jerseys the rest of the season. Mora said Nebraska's players will have a sticker with Pasquale's number on their helmets and there will be a moment of silence before Saturday's road game in his honor. Grief counselors were made available to the team on Monday. ''I'm not sure that all of them know how to process their emotions yet, so I just think it's important we give them time to do that,'' Mora told a group of reporters. Pasquale was walking in the early morning hours on Sunday along a street when he was hit by a car, according to the Orange County coroner's office. The driver stayed at the scene and was not charged with any crime or infraction, said Lt. Jeff Hallock of the Orange County Sheriff's Department. ''No drugs or alcohol have been found to have been factors for the driver,'' Hallock said. ''An autopsy report and later toxicology information will determine factors for the pedestrian.'' After starting to say that Pasquale had ''only played a few plays,'' Mora stopped mid-sentence during a Monday news conference when a video reporter in the back of the room began talking at the same time. Mora told him ''Shut up'' before the reporter, who had been obscured by a potted plant that he was standing behind, emerged and motioned for the coach to continue talking. Mora grew angry and chastised the reporter for displaying a lack of respect. The reporter apologized. Mora got up, told the gathering, ''I got nothing to say,'' grabbed his backpack and left the room. He met later with a group of reporters.

WATCH: Jim Mora goes off on reporter during press conference

UCLA Bruins coach Jim Mora was not at all happy with a disrespectful reporter while he was trying to talk about Nick Pasquale, who died tragically in a car accident.

Emotional Mora walks out of news conference

LOS ANGELES -- When Jim Mora took his first college head coaching job, there was something that touched him about working with college kids. It made an already-emotional coach even more fiercely protective of the players on his team. Nick Pasquale was no different. Pasquale, who passed away early Sunday morning after being struck by a car in his hometown of San Clemente, might not...

Jim Mora Walks Out Of Press Conference

UCLA just recently had a death to a team member, Nick Pasquale. Jim Mora had his usual Sunday press conference, and led off talking about Nick. A reporter decided to pick up his phone, and Mora was not having it. You can see the rest for yourself. May I add….this reporter is an idiot. The post Jim Mora Walks Out Of Press Conference appeared first on Third And Wrong.

Don't Mess With UCLA Head Coach Jim Mora; Nebraska to Honor Nick Pasquale

It was a hard weekend for the UCLA Bruins and their fans. A member of the football team, wide receiver Nick Pasquale, was hit by a car and killed. Bruins Head Coach Jim Mora was in the midst of addressing the media about Pasquale's death when someone made a big, big mistake and made the coach mad. I've heard conflicting reports; that the target of his wrath was...

Jim Mora Gets Rightfully Ticked at Dumbass Reporter

It's rare when a coach is right for getting angry and walking out of a press conference, but in this case, UCLA coach Jim Mora did exactly the right thing. Mora was rightfully angry during his Monday press conference that he began by talking about what he and the team were dealing with after the early Sunday morning death of walk-on WR Nick Pasquale. You can read more about...

Jim Mora Jr. flips out reporter who interrupts Nick Pasquale reflection (Video)

The UCLA football team and community are in the middle of dealing with a tragedy. On Sunday, redshirt freshman walk-on wide receiver Nick Pasquale died after he was hit by a car in his hometown of San Clemente, Calif. He was only 20 years old. At his press conference on Monday, UCLA head coach Jim […]

The Nick Pasquale Foundation

A foundation is established in the name of the UCLA player Nick Pasquale, to raise money to financially help dedicated athletes in his honor...

UCLA receiver Nick Pasquale hit by car, killed

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- UCLA receiver Nick Pasquale was hit by a car and killed while walking in San Clemente early Sunday morning. He was 20. The Orange County Sheriff's Department said Pasquale was struck about 1:30 a.m. It wasn't immediately clear whether Pasquale was trying to cross a street. Sheriff's Lt. Gary Strachan said the car's driver stopped, called authorities...

Jim Mora Jr. Walks Out of Press Conference After Reporter Talks on Phone (Video)

Today Jim Mora Jr had his first press conference since WR Nick Pasquale was hit by a car and died over the weekend. Mora Jr. was opening up his press conference by speaking about the situation when a reporter would not stop talking on his cell phone. Mora Jr. was  really set off when the reported tells him to “go on.” I’d be pretty mad about that too if I were the UCLA coach...

UCLA walk-on WR Nick Pasquale dies after being hit by car

UCLA redshirt freshman walk-on wide receiver Nick Pasquale died early Sunday morning after being hit by a car in his hometown of San Clemente, Calif. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department listed the news on their website and says the incident occurred at 1:27 am Sunday morning on Camino De Los Mares, west of Calle Nuevo. […]

Jim Mora Storms Out of Press Conference After Yelling at Media Member for Talking on Phone (Video)

Football coaches getting worked up at the podium can lead to some of the greatest comedic moments in sports. Unfortunately, Jim Mora‘s news conference on Monday was not one of those moments. The UCLA head coach spent a portion of his presser talking not about Saturday’s 58-20 thumping of Nevada or this weekend’s matchup against No. 23 Nebraska, but about Nick Pasquale, a redshirt...

Pac-12 Conference Call: Jim Mora

UCLA head coach Jim Mora talks about the upcoming game against Nebraska and how much of a test this will be for his team's mental toughness...

UCLA WR killed after being hit by a car

Today the NCAA lost a very young player to an accident. Nick Pasquale, a walk-on receiver at UCLA, died early Sunday morning after being hit by a vehicle in San Clemente, according to an Orange County coroner’s report. Pasquale, 20, was in his second season with the UCLA team. He was a graduate of San […]

UCLA's Mora bolts press conference

Most of the time when coaches storm out of press conferences, they end up looking like idiots. But UCLA head coach Jim L. Mora deserves a "Bravo!" for what he did on Monday. Mora began his press conference by addressing the tragic death of walk-on freshman wide receiver Nick Pasquale, who died Sunday morning after getting hit by a car . While Mora was in the middle of...

UCLA freshman WR hit by car, killed

UCLA freshman wide receiver Nick Pasquale has been struck by a car and killed while walking in San Clemente. He was 20.
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