The most memorable rejection of the UCLA basketball season happened in the stands rather than on the court.
Midway through a 71-63 victory over Richmond Dec. 23 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, UCLA’s “Mistletoe Cam” cut to a couple seated courtside. The man reaches into his pocket, pulls out a ring and says, “I knew that I was going to do this since the first day that I met you, and I figured now was as good a time as any.” His girlfriend’s response when he gets down on one knee and pops the question? Well, let’s just say it involved an awkward pause and running in the other direction.
Video of the proposal gone wrong didn’t surface on YouTube until Monday evening, but Los Angeles Times reporter Baxter Holmes asked several UCLA players about it following the game. “That’s cold,” Jerime Anderson said. “Tough break,” added David Wear.
Indeed the rejection was cringeworthy to watch because it’s every man’s nightmare when he prepares to ask for his girlfriend’s hand in marriage. Maybe this will be a lesson to men in the future that a college basketball game is not the ideal romantic spot for a proposal, especially when there are cell phone cameras poised to capture your humiliation should something go wrong.
There have been some instances of attention-seeking fake marriage proposals at sporting events in the past, but this doesn’t seem like one of them.
The emotions of the couple and the awkwardness of the emcee looked legit, plus a UCLA spokesman told Holmes the proposal wasn’t staged. And lastly, if you were going to seek attention this winter in Los Angeles, a sparsely attended game in the midst of UCLA’s train wreck of a basketball season definitely wouldn’t be the ideal spot.