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The UCLA Bruins have landed everyone they could possibly want. Can they translate it into results on the court?
Tony Parker, a 6'9", 250 pound center from Lithonia, Georgia and considered a top 10 center in this year's recruiting class, ended up picking UCLA over Georgia, Ohio State and Duke. Parker now could very well challenge for a starting big spot along with Josh Smith and the Wear twins at center, making them the deepest frontline in the conference
Parker now joins perhaps the top recruiting class in college basketball in Westwood. Shabazz Muhammad (considered the top NBA Draft prospect in 2013) committed to the Bruins a few weeks ago over Duke and Kentucky, providing UCLA with an elite slashing talent that could really swing games offensively. also provides a unique point guard presence that could. isn't quite as highly regarded as those two players, but he figures to be an elite slasher down the line.
To talk about Parker with UCLA basketball fans, head on over to Bruins Nation.
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Ben Howland landed the best of the best in Shabazz Muhammad and Kyle Anderson. Now he and UCLA wait on the decision of Tony Parker, who could make this recruiting class one for the ages.
Tony Parker has been linked a lot to UCLA basketball the past few weeks, particularly after Shabazz Muhammad made the move to become a Son of Westwood a little time ago. Muhammad, Parker, and current UCLA commit Kyle Anderson have all been linked close to each other, and it figures that the big man from Georgia would be the logical man to complete the trio.
Now the big man is ready to make his decision. Parker is moving his announcement from this Friday to next Monday to get ready to make his final decision. Here are his final five: UCLA, Duke, Georgia, Kansas and Ohio State. Everyone appears to be in it.
"That’s something that got started at [an all-star game] … it doesn’t have any legs to it," Miller Grove High School coach Sharman White told the AJC on Sunday.
"Tony has not committed yet. That’s the best and only way I can put it."
The Bruins should still be considered the prohibitive favorite though. Wouldn't that be quite the freshman trio if those three teamed up in Westwood?
To discuss the recruiting process for Parker with UCLA fans, head on over to Bruins Nation.
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Tony Parker has the size, strength and talent to become an impact player at the next level. The four-star big man, who comes in at 6'9'' and 280 pounds, received a ton of interest from programs all over the nation and is set to make a final decision in the coming week. With schools like UCLA, Kansas, Ohio State and hometown Georgia all vying for his services, you can bet it'll be a tough decision for the young man.
Tony Parker's coach denied a report that the AJC's Mr. Georgia basketball has decided to sign with UCLA.
"That's something that got started at [an all-star game] ... it doesn't have any legs to it," Miller Grove High School coach Sharman White told the AJC on Sunday.
"Tony has not committed yet. That's the best and only way I can put it."
"Tony is ready for it to get over with," White said. "He's planning on doing it on Friday. We haven't set a time yet but when we do, we'll let everybody know."
The Bruins remain very involved in his recruitment, though, and many feel he could choose to play for them next season. There are two potential issues that come with UCLA, though: playing time and the distance from home.
The program already has Travis and David Wear in their front court, twins who project to claim a ton of minutes in 2012. They also have enormous center Josh Smith, who could become a potential All-America candidate if he finally gets in shape. In a day and age where recruits seldom welcome sitting the bench in their freshman season, playing time may be tough to come by in Westwood.
The other issue is the distance from his family in Georgia. Los Angeles is upwards of 2,000 miles away from his home, which could be a problem for the 18-year-old.
At the end of the day, there is a reason Ben Howland is among the final coaches hoping to secure a commitment from Parker. He likes the school and the facilities, and no one would be surprised if he put on a Bruins hat on Friday.
For more on UCLA hoops, check out Bruins Nation.
Shabazz Muhammad's commitment to play basketball at UCLA on Wednesday caused many skeptics to wonder if UCLA's Adidas sponsorship was the cause.
The 2012 National Champions, Kentucky, along with traditional basketball powerhouse Duke, were the other two schools in Muhammad's final three — two schools sponsored by Nike.
Muhammad's critics also point out the fact that the five-star recruit chose a school that missed the NCAA tournament two of the past three seasons over Duke and Kentucky.
Adidas currently sponsors Muhammad's sister, Asia, a professional tennis player and was the sponsor for Muhammad's AAU team, Dream Vision.
So did the shoe company have any influence on his decision?
Muhammad's dad, Ron Holmes, cleared up any confusion in an interview with the Los Angeles Times:
"I don't understand when they say Adidas had a presence here," Holmes said in a telephone interview from his Las Vegas home. "Adidas didn't tell us where to go to school. ... If they're saying that Adidas is giving me money, that is a downright lie."
Will people take Holmes at his word? Of course, Muhammad's father is not going to say flat-out that a shoe company influenced his son's decision. The evidence might be overwhelming for those that speculate that Adidas played a role.
it would be naive for anybody to suggest the financial relationship Adidas has with people around Muhammad didn't factor into his decision to attend a Pac-12 school coming off a disappointing season highlighted by controversy. I mean, Adidas has sponsored Muhammad's summer team (Dream Vision) for years, and his tennis-playing sister (Asia Muhammad) has an Adidas contract even though she's ranked outside the top 375 in the world. This stuff has to matter on some level, you know?
Shabazz Muhammad is by all accounts one of the candidates to be the top recruit in the 2012 class. And he just made UCLA basketball nationally relevant again, perhaps even saving Ben Howland's job in the process.
Muhammad committed to UCLA over Kentucky and Duke just moments ago on ESPNU. Muhammad will bring a much needed offensive injection from the wing position and make UCLA one of the instant Pac-12 title contenders. Withat point guard plus and potentially Tony Parker, UCLA will potentially have the top recruiting class in the country.
While it's too early to know if Muhammad will be good enough to lift the Bruins back into the national conversation, UCLA does look an awfully lot better than it did a few weeks ago. They have great offensive talent at every position and should be one of the toughest teams in the country to stop, particularly in a full court contest. Howland was banking on landing Shabazz, and now he has a real dangerous basketball team to work with in Westwood.
To talk about Shabazz and the success of UCLA basketball recruiting, head on over to Bruins Nation. To discuss Shabazz's decision with Kentucky fans, check out A Sea of Blue. To talk about Duke basketball recruiting, head to Duke Basketball Report.
After what has seemed like an eternity, Shabazz Muhammad, arguably the best high school prospect to come out in years, will make a final decision. The 6'6 guard has made numerous visits to programs all around the nation, but he recently named a final trio of the Duke Blue Devils, Kentucky Wildcats and UCLA Bruins. One of these three schools are going to get an incredibly special player on Wednesday.
Announcement Time: Muhammad is expected to announce his decision live sometime after 7:30 p.m. ET, which is 4:30 p.m. in Los Angeles.
TV Coverage: ESPNU is airing a signing day special that will begin at 7:30 ET. Other top players are also expected to sign, including big man Tony Parker who is considering the Bruins.
Online Stream: Fans can find the signing day special streamed live on the Internet through ESPN3 and Watch ESPN.
Wednesday should be a very exciting and dramatic day for college hoops enthusiasts. Get ready, folks.
There comes a day for every fan base when they really hope the experts are right. In terms of possible UCLA basketball recruits, that day has come.
A panel of seven ESPN experts listed the schools they feel the top remaining unsigned prospects are headed to and four of them have Shabazz Muhammad (no. 2 in the ESPNU 100) headed to UCLA, while the other three have him headed to Kentucky.
Muhammad is one of the top-two big fish still remaining, along with Nerlens Noal. If Muhammad lands at UCLA, the Bruins will automatically be one of the teams on the rise in the Pac-12 and nationally.
Three experts have Tony Parker (no. 26 in ESPNU 100) and one has Savon Goodman (no. 100 in ESPNU 100) headed to UCLA as well. The likelihood of getting all three is small. The likelihood of getting two is better. But the fact that UCLA is back battling for top-tier talent is a good sign of things to come.
College basketball is just better when UCLA is one of the elite programs in the country and at least a Muhammad coup would put them back there.
For more on Muhammad and the Bruins, check out Bruins Nation.
Shabazz Muhammad is about to make his decision about where he will attend college. The Bishop Gorman forward will make his choice on ESPNU at 7:30 PM ET/4:30 PM PT as part of their Signing Day coverage.
There are three schools among the finalists for one of the top basketball prospects in the country: The UCLA Bruins, the Kentucky Wildcats, and the Duke Blue Devils. UCLA has long been considered the favorites, as Ben Howland has been recruiting Muhammad for a long time. However, the Bruins have struggled on and off the court lately, leading many to believe the door is open for either Kentucky or Duke to make a run at the star.
One thing's for sure. Whoever gets Muhammad is getting a game-changing talent. The Bruins desperately need a wing like Shabazz to open up their offense and get UCLA flowing in the open court, and Kentucky and Duke would love to get another top offensive star plugged into their systems. One fanbase is going to be very happy this Wednesday night.
To discuss Shabazz with UCLA fans, head to Bruins Nation. To talk to Shabazz with Kentucky fans, go to A Sea of Blue. To learn more about what Duke fans feel about Shabazz, hit up Duke Basketball Report.
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Shabazz Muhammad is the top recruit left in the country that remains uncommitted. Many consider him the best prospect on the board, period. So where's he going to end up?
If recent indications mean anything, the UCLA Bruins should feel comfortable that they'll get their shot. Dave Telep has more from his ESPN Insider article ($).
"I’m considering five but there are three that (standout)," Muhammad said.
UCLA, Duke and Kentucky (in no order) are above Kansas and UNLV -- the others in his top five.
UCLA has long been considered the favorite--Shabazz has been a fan of the Bruins for sometime, and hasn't really wavered in his interest despite the lack of success for the Bruins this season. Still, the success of Kentucky has to be alluring, and Duke offers many of the similar athletic and academic amenities that UCLA brings to the table. Should be a compelling race all the way to decision time.
The top uncommitted basketball prospect in the Class of 2012, Shabazz Muhammad, has been rumored to be leaning toward becoming a member of the UCLA Bruins. He will make his first official visit to the campus soon before he announces his commitment decision.
According to Adam Zagoria, Muhammad is planning to make his official visit to UCLA in early April. His official commitment decision will come soon after, so all the speculation should be put to bed in less than a month.
"That's going to be our last official visit," Holmes said of the UCLA visit. "Then I think he's going to decide on the 9th or the 10th, something like that. He'll do something at his high school [to announce]."
Muhammad has already made official visits to the Texas A&M Longhorns, the Duke Blue Devils, the Kansas Jayhawks and the Kentucky Wildcats. Other possible destinations for the prospect include the UNLV Runnin' Rebels and the Arizona Wildcats.
To discuss Shabazz, or for all news and information regarding the UCLA Bruins, please visit Bruins Nation.
The recruiting battle for Shabazz Muhammad has dragged on for months and has featured many turns while the electric 6'6 guard decides which school he will attend next fall. While just about every program in the nation has tried to lure Muhammad to their town, he seems to have narrowed his list down to these schools: Arizona, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA, UNLV and USC.
For as talented as Muhammad is, he and his father, Ron Holmes, who is very involved in his son's recruitment, may be in some trouble next season. Could the nation's No. 1 player be ruled ineligible? The NCAA is telling programs to tread carefully with Muhammad, according to this latest update from Jeff Goodman and Gary Parrish of CBS Sports.
The NCAA has contacted each school recruiting the nation's top-ranked high school basketball prospect, Shabazz Muhammad, and made them aware of financial dealings that could compromise Muhammad's amateur status, multiple sources have told CBSSports.com.
The sources told CBSSports.com that the NCAA is specifically interested in connections between Muhammad's family and financial advisers Benjamin Lincoln and Ken Kavanagh. Lincoln is a North Carolina-based financial planner whose brother, Geoff Lincoln, is an assistant coach for Muhammad's high school team in Las Vegas. Kavanagh is a New York-based financial planner.
Sources told CBSSports.com the NCAA is skeptical that these relationships -- and the financial assistance they've provided Muhammad's summer team and family -- are legitimately unrelated to Muhammad's athletic ability, which could in turn compromise Muhammad's amateur status. That's among the reasons the NCAA contacted schools still pursuing Muhammad and essentially informed them that though they are free to continue recruiting the 6-foot-5 wing, they should understand that there are potential amateurism issues.
If these questions about a potential advisor and money issues were not enough, check this little tidbit out:
Another interesting twist to Muhammad's recruitment is the perceived role of Adidas.
Industry sources have claimed for more than a year that Muhammad would almost certainly land at UCLA because Adidas is heavily invested in Muhammad through its sponsorship of Dream Vision, and because the Bruins are one of the shoe company's flagship programs. Some have even suggested Holmes is on payroll with Adidas, but he emphatically denied that to CBSSports.com. But Holmes did acknowledge that his daughter, Asia Muhammad, has a contract with Adidas. She's a professional tennis player ranked 386th in the world.
"Now you can quote me on this," Holmes said. "What I have to say is that [Adidas] has never once come at me about 'Bazz going to an Adidas school. They'll say if he goes to an Adidas school like UCLA or Kansas that means they'll get to see him more because [they] go and watch those games. But they've never come at me like that. Adidas has never done anything they weren't supposed to do."
This situation sure seems like a complete and total mess and you have to start wondering just when these college programs are going to start backing off Shabazz (and his father) with these allegations coming in. Yes, he is an incredibly talented player, but is he worth the headache (and potential legal issues) with the looming ineligibility questions on the horizon?
Maybe I'll be wrong and Muhammad will go on to win the Naismith next season with one of these schools, but I wouldn't bet on it.
The Shabazz Muhammad sweepstakes still hasn't come to a conclusion. And it looks like a new contender might be coming into the picture. Adam Zagoria filed this report.
As for Kansas, Holmes said he was very impressed with the strength and conditioning program run by Andrea Hudy and the academic and career counseling program run by Scott Ward.
"Andrea Hudy was very thorough on how they would help Shabazz become a better athlete, make his movement better, all that kind of stuff, so I was really impressed with that," Holmes said. "The academic situation is really, really good…Those things are helping your kid go the right away academically, physically with weight training.
"And it’s just a program, man. You look at winning eight Big 12 championships in [Bill Self's] years. And even if you look at the team this year, it’s not as good as the team last year, so there’s never a dip there.
For a long time, it figured like Muhammad's decision would come down to either UCLA or Kentucky. UCLA provides Muhammad with the right combination of strong education and great tradition, while Kentucky has the system in place to perhaps best showcase his basketball talents. With the Bruins muddling and the Wildcats surging, it was starting t
But Kansas getting into the picture could muddle things up. They too share a strong basketball tradition, and their academic support system is one of the best in the country for their athletes. Muhammad definitely has the cream of the crop after him, and his recruitment doesn't figure to end quickly.
Arizona, UNLV and Duke are also being considered, and all could jump into the picture as well.
To discuss recruiting with fans of any of the teams in consideration, go to Rock Chalk Talk (Kansas), A Sea of Blue (Kentucky), Duke Basketball Report (Duke), Bruins Nation (UCLA) and Arizona Desert Swarm (Arizona).
Shabazz Muhammad is the coveted top recruit in the 2012 basketball class, and for a long time the UCLA Bruins were considered one of the frontrunners to land him. But it's starting to look as if the Bishop Gorman star might be looking elsewhere.
Paul Biancardi is ESPN's director of basketball recruiting, and he had this to say regarding Shabazz.
Indeed, it seems as if the Kentucky Wildcats have been relentlessly pursuing Muhammad, and they've made a very persuasive case to the 6'6" small forward. Muhammad is the perfect type of player to fit inside John Calipari's dribble-drive offense, and he could definitely excel given a year or two playing in it to hone his NBA game.
UCLA probably has only themselves to blame, as their team seems destined for a disappointing NIT showing. The lack of success on the court might be hampering their recruitment of Shabazz, along with the growing uncertainty as to whether Ben Howland will still be the coach next year. Muhammad has always liked UCLA though, so there is hope he might end up reconsidering Westwood when all is said and done.
After back-to-back losing seasons under previous coach Rick Neuheisel, new head coach Jim Mora and the UCLA Bruins had their work cut out for them on National Signing Day 2012. The Bruins brought in 26 new players on Wednesday, looking to restock the cupboards in Westwood.
The headliners of the Bruins' class of 2012 are Ellis McCarthy, a consensus five-star defensive tackle from Monrovia High School, and quarterback Devin Fuller, a consensus four-star signal caller from Northern Valley High School and Old Tappan, New Jersey. In addition, four-star wide receiver Jordan Payton ultimately chose UCLA after previously committing to USC, California, and Washington.
UCLA had their class ranked No. 11 by Scout.com, No. 12 by Rivals, and No. 19 by ESPN. Here is the full list of all 26 Bruin recruits, using star ratings from both Rivals and Scout.com:
Ellis McCarthy, defensive tackle from Monrovia High School
Ishmael Adams, defensive back from Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village
Jeremy Castro, linebacker from Vista Murrieta High School in Murrieta
Devin Fuller, quarterback from Northern Valley High School in Old Tappan, New Jersey
Jordan Payton, wide receiver from Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village
Aaron Porter, linebacker from La Habra High School
Marcus Rios, defensive back from Cosumnes Oaks in Elk Grove, California
Lacy Westbrook, offensive lineman from Compton Dominquez High School (four stars from Rivals, three stars from Scout)
Javon Williams, wide receiver from Chandler High School in Chandler, Arizona (four stars from Rivals, three stars from Scout)
Colby Cyburt, offensive lineman from Mission Viejo High School
Randall Goforth, defensive back from Long Beach Poly High School
Simon Goines, offensive lineman from Keller Central High School in Keller, Texas
Carl Hulick, offensive lineman from Esperanza High School
Nate Iese, linebacker from Sheldon High School in Sacramento
Taylor Lagace, safety from Arcadia High School
T.J. Millweard, quarterback from All Saints Episcopal in Fort Worth, Texas
Fabian Moreau, running back from Western High School in Davie, Florida
Kenny Orjioke, "athlete" from Lassiter High School in Marietta, Georgia
Paul Perkins, "athlete" from Chandler High School in Chandler, Arizona
Ian Taubler, tight end from Bullard High School in Fresno
Kenny Walker, wide receiver from Kennedy High School in Richmond, California
Alexandru Ceachir, offensive lineman from the country of Moldova, via Santa Monica Community College
Eli Ankou, defensive lineman from Red Lion Christian Academy in Bear, Delaware
Justin Combs, defensive back from Iona Prep in New Rochelle, New York
Ka'imi Fairbairn, kicker from Punahou High School in Honolulu, Hawaii
Ahmaad Harris, wide receiver from Peachtree Ridge High School in Suwanee, Georgia
The UCLA Bruins will be rising a bit in the final rankings. Two more recent commitments will help shore out their team on the outside.
Kenny Walker was a nice pickup from the Bay Area. A recent Cal commit, Walker had been looking around ever since his position coach Eric Kiesau left for Washington, and after really considering the Huskies, Walker decided to head south and fax his LOI to Westwood in Jim Mora.
Randall Goforth is a Long Beach Poly wide receiver/cornerback that looked like he could join a group of players on their way to the Arizona St. Sun Devils. However, Goforth found what he was looking for in UCLA, and made his announcement on Fox Sports West.
UCLA definitely does have a lot of talent in their recruiting class. The question is how much of the class can they retain with the Bruins now approaching 100 scholarships, well above the 85-schollie limit.
To talk about UCLA football recruiting, head on over to Bruins Nation.
Jim Mora has had a busy first month on the job as UCLA Bruins head football coach. He and his new coaching staff have been very active on the recruiting trail, and the result has been a slew of players in their class of 2012. The school won't officially announce recruits until their letter of intent are received by the school, and here are five who will officially join UCLA.
Ishmael Adams: a four-star cornerback from Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village, California, rated the 10th-best cornerback in the country by Rivals.
Carl Hulick: a three-star center from Esparanza High School in Anaheim, rated the 14th-best center in the country by Rivals.
Eli Ankou: a three-star defensive end from Red Lion Christian Academy in Bear, Delaware.
Simon Goines: a three-star offensive tackle from Central High School in Keller, Texas.
Ahmaad Harris: a running back / wide receiver from Peachtree Ridge High School in Suwanee, Georgia.
Javon WIlliams, a consensus 4-Star recruit, has committed to the UCLA Bruins, announcing the news on television on National Signing Day 2012. Williams who played for Chandler High School, chose the Bruins over the Arkansas Razorbacks the other finalist for his services.
'12 AZ WR Javon Williams (via RedshirtScouting)
Williams was the 36-highest wide receiver in the nation according to the Rivals rankings, and the fourth best in the state of Arizona. He joins a UCLA squad that has a number of young talented receivers like Jeffrey Johnson and Ricky Marvay.
Jordan Payton, a consensus four-star recruit, has apparently changed his mind yet again and chosen to commit to the UCLA Bruins on National Signing Day, per multiple reports. The wide receiver from Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village, California had previously committed to three different Pac-12 Conference schools: USC, Cal, and Washington.
The school has not yet announced the signing of Payton, a 6'3", 205-pound receiver. But the news was first tweeted by Sean Ceglinsky of ESPN. Brandon Huffman of Scout.com confirmed the news, as did Jonathan Gold of the LA Daily News.
Payton is the 15th highest ranked wide receiver per both Rivals and Scout.com. So far on National Signing Day, UCLA head coach Jim Mora has only officially announced four signings: defensive tackle Ellis McCarthy, linebacker Jeremy Castro, quarterback Devin Fuller, and linebacker Nate Lese.
St. John Bosco wide receiver Bryce Treggs is currently committed to Cal and is the jewel in their wideout recruiting efforts. It's probably going to stick, but he's leaving the door slightly ajar before his announcement this afternoon.
I'm just gonna follow my heart and do what's best for me! Tune in to fox sports west tomorrow at 4:30 to see me decide. #TeamTreggs
I doubt many people thought the UCLA Bruins would finish with a flourish, but here they are landing one of the top athletes in the country. Could he end up being the quarterback of the future for the program?
Fuller surprisingly committed to UCLA over Rutgers, Arizona, Nebraska and TCU. Fuller seemed to be leaning toward Rutgers before the departure of Greg Schiano, which opened the door for the Bruins to land the Old Tappan star from New Jersey. This is a big pickup for the Bruins, who continue to fill up their class with quality players who can contribute quickly.
To talk about Fuller going to UCLA, head to Bruins Nation. To discuss Arizona football recruiting, check out Arizona Desert Swarm. To talk about Nebraska football recruiting, go to Corn Nation. To learn more about Rutgers football recruiting, go to On The Banks. To talk about TCU football recruiting, head on over to Frogs O' War.
Monrovia defensive lineman Ellis McCarthy was considered one of the best recruits in the country, and his commitment to the California Golden Bears at the Army All-American Game was considered a coup. McCarthy is considered perhaps the best defensive lineman on the West Coast, and he figures to be a game-changer at whatever program he ends up in.
So when Tosh Lupoi left Cal earlier today for Washington, it figured that McCarthy would be reconsidering his options, and it turns out he's been heavily interested in the UCLA Bruins for awhile. So much so that he was ready to make his commitment after an in-home visit. Miguel Melendez of Inside SoCal reports.
McCarthy changed his mind after consulting with his family upon news that Lupoi was leaving to join Steve Sarkisian's staff at Washington.
According to a source, UCLA defensive backs coach and former Washington recruiter Demetrice Martin was at the McCarthy residence Monday when McCarthy announced he was choosing the Bruins.
Ed went into detail about how UCLA suddenly grew in the picture.
"UCLA was always there," Ed said. "It was always something that he thought about since he was a little child. We even have a picture of him wearing a UCLA jersey."
UCLA now has a dominant defensive tackle to clog the inside and help the Bruins try and rebuild their defensive front. The question is will his commitment stick? USC would love to take McCarthy right away if they can. We shall see.
To discuss UCLA football recruiting, head on over to Bruins Nation.
New UCLA Bruins head coach Jim Mora has been on quite a roll in the last few weeks on the recruiting trail and that continued on Saturday as local prospect Tairen Owens committed to the program. Owens, who was originally set to play with the Washington Huskies, decommitted after all the changes to the UW coaching staff took place last week.
He plays locally at Pasadena Muir High School and has followed UCLA for quite some time now. When secondary coach Demetrice Martin headed south from Washington and joined the Bruins staff, it was an easy decision for Owens.
"Coach Martin recruited me hard to Washington and he recruited me even harder to UCLA," Owens said. "We have built a good relationship."
Owens is ranked as a three-star prospect by most scouting services and has seen his stock rise a bit after an impressive senior season. It remains to be seen which position he plays in college, but his desire to play with coach Martin says a lot about where he feels he will end up.
For more on UCLA football, head on over to Bruins Nation. Here are some highlights of the newest commit in action.
Nate Sudfeld is one of the highest ranked quarterbacks available in the class of 2012 and the gunslinger out of California recently opened his recruitment up after decommiting from the Arizona Wildcats. Once viewed as a perfect fit in Tucson, the hiring of Rich Rodriguez and the inclusion of the read-option offense has caused the 6'5, 230 pound Sudfeld to weigh all of his options.
According to this update from ESPN, Sudfeld has the UCLA Bruins high on his list and will take a visit in the very near future. The senior quarterback has said multiple times he hopes to enroll early in order to participate in Spring Practice.
"I'm going to visit UCLA (Jan. 20) and they have been recruiting me hard for a while now. They haven't offered me yet but hopefully it happens. I plan to graduate early and that was really the sticking point in me opening things up. I just didn't feel comfortable enrolling early at Arizona right now before I really knew more about the new staff. Like I said, they're still going to recruit me and I'm still looking at them as well."
Head coach Jim Mora has been on fire in recent weeks on the recruiting trail and the addition of Sudfeld would be absolutely huge for the Bruins. It sounds like Sudfeld still views the Wildcats as the leaders in his recruitment -- especially with there being a vacancy at the quarterback position come 2013 -- although the next few weeks will be huge for the programs trying to get back into the mix.
For more on UCLA football, head on over to Bruins Nation.
Jim Mora's presence is being felt on the West Coast.
After already getting commitments from Marietta (Ga.) Lassiter High School linebacker Kenny Orjioke, Arcadia wide receiver Taylor Lagace and Elk Grove Oaks defensive back Marcus Rios in the past two week, Mora's scoop of Westlake Village Oaks Christian's Ishmael Adams is further proof that Mora means business.
With Notre Dame, Arizona State and Cal all after the 5-foot-10, 185 pound Adams, he chose the UCLA Bruins.
Here's what he told the Los Angeles Times.
"UCLA just felt right," Adams said. "I felt calm after making my decision. You can get a great education. I can be near home, so my family can see me play. I want to help change the program."
Everyone thought Cal was the first choice and UCLA's coaching change was seen more as a hindrance than a plus. That changed, as Adams told ESPN's Ted Miller.
After the coaching change, I didn't think much about UCLA, but I really like Coach Mora a lot and I like Demetrice Martin a lot as well. He's a good coach, and I know he'll make me better.
According to Miller, Adams is one of 22 commitments to UCLA and is the second with a four-star rating.
Ishmael Adams is a Westlake Village cornerback and perhaps one of the best defensive backs on the West Coast; he ranks right up there with Tee Shepard, Brandon Beaver and Kevon Seymour among the best cover corners in all of California.
Adams has made a surprise move in his recruiting process. Rumored to be favoring the California Golden Bears for the last few weeks, the Oaks Christian defensive back has committed to the UCLA Bruins. Adams joins Marcus Rios and probably helps to form one of the best one-two punches in the Pac-12 with regards to secondary recruiting.
"I just committed to UCLA," Adams said. "I prayed about this decision really hard and made a pros and cons list for both schools. When I weighed everything against each other, UCLA came out on top. Academically, I like what UCLA offers, the proximity to home was important and the biggest thing was being able to be a part of changing a program around versus just being a part of a program.
Jim Mora appears to be making some positive moves for the Bruins in recruiting. His experience as a defensive backs coach in the NFL probably made a big impression on the Southern California product, who had long liked the Bruins early in the process.
To discuss Adams and UCLA football recruiting, head on over to Bruins Nation.
Shabazz Muhammad, the nation's top high school basketball recruit for 2012 and potentially the best overall prospect since John Wall in 2009, has experienced a drawn-out recruitment over the last few months. Once view as a lean towards the UCLA Bruins, that may no longer be the case with the program struggling the way it has in 2011. Here is the latest news:
Per @3starmeyer, UCLA is "losing ground" in Shabazz Muhammad's recruitment as a result of its struggles. Not good for Ben Howland.— Jeff Eisenberg (@JeffEisenberg) December 17, 2011
Just about every program in the nation is after the talented senior, although schools such as Kentucky, Duke, UNLV and Arizona have all been connected to Shabazz in recent months. While the Bruins certainly aren't out of the running for Muhammad, the program needs to turn their season around in a hurry if they hope to land him for 2012.
Muhammad and his family have not set an official announcement date for when he will decide on a college, but a decision will likely come in the spring once he wraps up his season at Bishop Gorman High School in Nevada.
The UCLA Bruins have had a rough patch of news this week. Perhaps some news that's straight Hollywood will brighten their spirits.
Justin Combs expressed interest in being a UCLA Bruin earlier this year and received an offer for his efforts. Despite the rough patch of news this week, Combs ended up committing to UCLA over schools like Illinois, Virginia, Wyoming, Middle Tennessee and Alabama-Birmingham. Hardly an impressive list, but think of the name involved!
Check out his tape.
If you look at Combs on tape, it's clear that he's not the most amazing prospect out there. There are definitely things he's pretty good at and he seems to excel against the level of competition he's up against, but he has a lot of work to do before he's ready to take a Pac-12 field and be a strong coverage corner. It'll definitely be a fascinating dynamic to see him in Westwood in a city which his father was once one of the top celebrities.
For more on UCLA football, head to Bruins Nation.
The UCLA Bruins might not just lose a lot this season if they keep on struggling on the basketball court. They might lose the next season or two by striking out on the recruiting trail. Matt Norlander of CBS Sports speculates that UCLA's struggles on the court could affect who ends up signing with them in the next few months, particularly top recruit Shabazz Muhammad of Bishop Gorman.
Indeed, it'd be tough for UCLA to land Muhammad if their struggles continue. Muhammad projects to only stick around Westwood for one or two seasons, and there's no incentive for him to go to a location that couldn't contend for a national championship. The only thing that'd be guaranteed for him is playing time, but he'd probably end up playing whereever he went. So the Bruins would probably suffer a downgrade.
Who could benefit the most? The Kentucky Wildcats.
Shabazz has already said he likes UK head coach John Calipari, which could give the Wildcats a needed edge in the race. And Kentucky (unlike UCLA) is doing anything but whimpering, roaring to an early impressive start (including a big victory against Kansas in Madison Square Garden). UCLA might need to recover in a hurry to make up any competitive ground.
For more on UCLA basketball, head to Bruins Nation.
The UCLA Bruins basketball squad is suffering pretty hard on the court. That suffering could be extended to every other facet of their team in short order if they don't heal the wounds soon enough.
Shaq Goodwin, a forward from Southwest DeKalb High in Decatur, Georgia, was supposed to be seriously considering the Bruins, perhaps even favoring them after a recent visit. But that's apparently not the case, as Goodwin indicated he was Memphis bound earlier today. Jeff Borzello of CBS Sports filed this report.
Goodwin, a 6-foot-8 power forward from Southwest DeKalb (Ga.), chose the Tigers over UCLA, with Florida, Georgia and Arizona also in the mix. The Bruins were assumed to be in the driver’s seat for much of the last few weeks, especially after Goodwin visited this past weekend. Moreover, Goodwin’s former AAU coach, Korey McCray, is now an assistant coach with the Bruins.
Apparently none of that mattered. So why would Goodwin commit so suddenly to the Tigers?
Perhaps he really was liking how Memphis was performing on the court relative to the Bruins, who have staggered to an ugly 0-2 start. Goodwin could also have noticed how average the production of the bigs has looked, seen the instability of the program based on the recent rash of suspensions, and figured it'd be best to take his talents elsewhere. Hard to fault him for going to Memphis, but the Bruins have to be kicking themselves at letting a prized recruit like Goodwin get away.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, check out Bruins Nation.
The Michigan Wolverines have been hot in pursuit of Jordan Payton for quite some time, but the Oaks Christian star from Westlake Village is still taking his time trying to make a decision between a bunch of schools that includes ASU, Cal, Michigan, Notre Dame, and potentially (although who knows how long that interest will last with the current situation in State College) Penn State.
So Michigan is starting to look at other options, and Darius Powe from Lakewood is starting to look like an intriguing option for them. Justin Hopkins of 247Sports reports.
He was expected to visit Michigan for the night game bonanza with against Notre Dame but was forced to reschedule.
"I'm still trying to set that visit up but I haven't yet," Powe said. "After my season I should be able to sit down and get that trip planned. I really want to get out there, I love the offense and the fact they are a big-time school. Michigan, Oregon State and Utah are recruiting me the hardest right now."
Powe has been under-the-radar in terms of top wide receiver recruits in the West Coast. He has favored the Oregon St. Beavers and the UCLA Bruins along with Michigan, but it appears that UCLA has fallen a little bit down the ladder. And on this list of programs, it'd make perfect sense for Michigan to leap to the top.
The UCLA Bruins (particularly UCLA) and USC Trojans are both potential candidates to land the best recruit of the 2012 class, but Shabazz Muhammad is in no hurry to come to a decision on where he's spending his time in college.
Muhammad revealed that he won't be signing today like many other college basketball recruits. Makes sense for Muhammad to take his time and weigh his options. He is the top recruit and he should want to survey which situation would be most optimal for him to showcase his talents.
However, he may have let off a huge clue as to where he's leaning right now. Muhammad talked to Mitch Sherman of ESPN Recruiting Nation about his potential decision.
Muhammad said he took official visits to Texas A&M in September and Kentucky in October. He spoke highly of both programs, in particular the Wildcats, whose Big Blue Madness impressed him. Of the coaches he's met, UK's John Calipari stands out, Muhammad said.
"I think it's probably because it was my last official visit," he said, "but Coach Cal's personality is great. He pushes his players in practice. That's the thing I'm looking for. I'm trying to get better and get to the next level."
Sounds like a good sign that Calipari is sticking out, and a bad sign for UCLA basketball head coach Ben Howland. It is really difficult to compete with the best college basketball recruiter in the country, but UCLA should have a pretty solid system where a guy like Muhammad should thrive.
This looks like a battle that could go on for quite some time, but all signs looking good for Kentucky right now. UCLA might have some catching up to do.
There's a lot of uncertainty in UCLA Bruins football on and off the field. But it looks like recruiting could be on the right track, which is definitely something Rick Neuheisel has excelled at during his UCLA tenure.
Dominguez offensive lineman Lacy Westbrook committed to Westwood earlier this evening. Westbrook had offers from over 20 schools, including four Pac-12 schools, but the Bruins ended up winning out. Greg Biggins has more on the story.
"Lacy called up coach [Rick] Neuheisel and committed on Monday," Westbrook’s father Lacy Sr.said. "For a dad, this is a dream come true for me. I can go to every one of his home games and even attend his practices if I want. UCLA has a talented all-around sports program but more importantly to me, it’s one of the most prestigious academic universities in the country.
UCLA will want Westbrook to play guard at the next level, and he definitely shows the girth and power to hold his own in the trenches. The Bruins are starting to really put some talent together in the trenches, and hopefully it can start paying off with better protection for their quarterbacks and more consistent run blocking.
One of the biggest offensive line recruits in the West is Paul Thurston, offensive lineman from Arvada, Colorado. The offensive tackle is perhaps the best Thurston had a lot of interest from multiple Pac-12 schools, but he set his eyes toward the Midwest, and committed early on to the Nebraska Cornhuskers. The offensive tackle is one among many offensive tackles who could potentially be a three to four year starting offensive tackle.
Justin Hopkins of 247 Sports reports that Thurston is as solid as he can be. Interestingly, he mentions that UCLA has still remained in contact in him, making you wonder how desperately they need offensive line talent right now if they're trying to sway a solid verbal away from Lincoln. UCLA's offensive line woes are well-documented, and you figure they must be trying their best to sway Thurston back West. Not looking like it's happening though.
We mentioned earlier that Inglewood wide receiver Derrick Woods, perhaps the best wideout in all of Los Angeles. He elaborated on the recruiting process with Tara Turnure of Scout, and had this information to reveal.
Oklahoma Sooners: Probably the early favorite to land him. It's one of the top programs in the country, and Woods mentioned their top status (although I wonder if their upset loss to Texas Tech changed things up). Woods is taking an official soon to November 5th to Norman.
Alabama Crimson Tide: Does have family in the South. Didn't mention too much about them, but that they're up there in the final group has to be an encouraging sign.
USC Trojans: Has a good connection with the coaching staff, just like in Oklahoma.
UCLA Bruins: Mentioned as an afterthought compared to the first three. Oklahoma, Alabama and USC seem to be the real leaders in this race.
Obviously, at this point when it comes to top basketball recruits, it's a guessing game as to where they really want to go. Shabazz Muhammad is the biggest fish, and no one outside of his household has any idea into his recruitment or where he's leaning, least of all him. Still, there are people throwing indicators out there.
It's way too early in the process to figure out who's in the lead for Shabazz. But Rick Broering of Rivals did throw out these nuggets that could be useful.
On Kentucky’s chances of landing him…
Depends on who you ask right now. Some say Kentucky is the leader and others will say UCLA. I think Kentucky will certainly be in there until the end.
It doesn't necessarily mean Kentucky or UCLA are leading, but since they're getting the most chatter they must be deeply in the mix. However, Shabazz has also visited those schools a lot, which could mean that he's not favoring either, it's just that he's been to each school enough to get that buzz generated for each of them.
Still, positive chatter is better than no chatter at all.
Shabazz Muhammad is the prize that UCLA Bruins basketball fans all seek. But they're going to have to wait awhile, and probably compete with Kentucky Wildcats fans for their affection for the Bishop Gorman talent.
The Las Vegas high school senior swingman continues to be patient in taking his trips, and it looks like he and his dad are going to take their time in making a decision about where he attends school. Muhammad most recently attended Midnight Madness in Lexington, and Nation of Blue got the full rundown.
We were really intrigued by the practices. There was no wasted time and they really got up and down the floor. The dribble-drive concepts were broken down, and they were really intriguing."
"Shabazz will be a springtime decision. We still have to see Duke, Arizona, and Kansas, and see more of UCLA, USC, and UNLV."
It's clear that Kentucky is going to be right there until the end. John Calipari has openings left in his class, and I'm sure he wants to see the number one recruit end up in his program. Can the Bruins (the rumored favorite for Shabazz) hang tight and weather any recruiting assaults for their main man? It remains to be seen.
Dominic Artis, point guard from Findlay Prep, looked like he was on his way to Westwood after committing early to the UCLA Bruins. He would be joining up with one of the top classes in the country with Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson. There's the potential addition of another key recruit like Shabazz Muhammad on the horizon.
Artis isn't quite ready to become a Bruin just yet. Jeff Borzello of CBS Sports reports on the following.
Derrick Artis, Dominic’s uncle, confirmed the news to CBSSports.com.
"He felt like he rushed into his commitment," Artis said. "Still loves UCLA and they are the top of his list, but he wants to make sure he is making the right decision."
Artis is a 6-foot point guard from Findlay Prep (Nev.) who ranked No. 84 in our Top 100. He is originally from California and ran with the ultra-talented Oakland Soldiers on the AAU circuit.
His decision to decommit from the Bruins was not an overnight idea.
"He’s been thinking for awhile now," Derrick Artis said.
Now, this doesn't mean Artis won't ultimately end up back in UCLA, but it also does make you a little cautious about trusting in recruiting verbals. Verbals aren't real until someone signs that letter of intent. Artis might be worried about Anderson coming in to try and compete with him for the point guard position, and he might be looking for a place where he'd be in a good spot to be the starting point sooner rather than later.
Artis was also recruited by Florida State, Oregon, Cal and Georgia Tech. Those schools certainly have to be interested in this news, and will certainly be paying the top West Coast point a visit at a future date. Plus don't expect Ben Howland to take this lying down.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, go to Bruins Nation.
Kyle Anderson has committed to the UCLA Bruins, according to ESPN analyst Miles Simon. Anderson is ranked No. 2 by Rivals in their Recruiting Top 150 and was also considering Georgetown, Florida and Seton Hall.
The guard/forward hybrid has had UCLA at the top of his list for some time but didn't make any official declaration on his intent to play until Monday. Adding Anderson is a huge gain for the Bruins, who figure to be strong players in the Pac-12 (or whatever the conference turns out to be next year).
UCLA gains another added benefit by adding Anderson: they move up on top prospect Shabazz Muhammad's list. The two have been good friends for some time and have talked about playing together. With Anderson's commitment to UCLA, Muhammad may be tempted to join his friend in Los Angeles and form a powerful duo.
The commitment carries huge repercussions for UCLA basketball. The prospect of adding the nation's top two prospects is scary and could turn UCLA into a national powerhouse. For now, there is no official word on Muhammad. It is official, though, that Anderson has committed to being a Bruin in 2012.
Oaks Christian teammates wide receiver Jordan Payton and cornerback Ishmael Adams are teammates that could be teaming up at he next level. But considering the schools they're looking at, there appears to be very little intersection.
Adam Gorney of Rivals reports ($) that Payton will be taking visits to three schools in the Midwest--the Michigan Wolverines, Penn State Nittany Lions and Oklahoma Sooners. Payton says that'll he take two other officials, and one of them is likely to be Cal (as Payton had previous suggested that the Bears along with Michigan were in his top two). It could be that Payton is only exploring Penn State and Oklahoma to take advantage of official visits, but you can never count out these schools.
Gorney also reports ($) that Adams still has the same two schools that he had originally--the California Golden Bears and the UCLA Bruins. You can see that if Payton and Adams want to play together at the next level, only Cal matches. So it's quite possible the two will diverge in where they'll end up playing their college ball.
It's been awhile since we've had a wacky story from the college basketball ranks. Here's one that ties in all the fun stuff: AAU allegiances, teaming up with fellow stars (the LeBron-syndrome), and reneging on a verbal to check out other places.
Dave Krupinski, the Digital Media Director at the Hoop Group, has some serious information to dish out about a former Villanova Wildcats verbal. Krupinski has apparently been saying that Savon Goodman, a 6'6" 220 pound power forward from Philadelphia who was once Villanova's biggest haul for the 2012 class, decommitted from Villanova because he wanted to play his college ball with his AAU buddy Kyle Anderson. The two are likely to make independent decisions though.
Most worryingly for St. John's fans, they will not pursue a Goodman-Anderson connection at the next level according to Alex Kline of The Recruit Scoop. This could be good news for UCLA fans, who believe that Anderson has them near the top. Getting a player like Goodman to team up with Anderson and (potentially) Shabazz Muhammad would be the coup of 2012 college basketball recruiting.
It should be important to state that UCLA has not done anything wrong in these proceedings. But it again shows how in the treacherous world of college basketball recruiting, you need to bring paper and pencil to keep track of all the changes, because nothing is ever certain until the guys sign their LOIs, and even then you have to make sure they stick with it.
And who knows? Maybe Goodman will end up going back to Villanova and this story is all for naught. Just another typical day for amateur hoops. College basketball recruiting is such a joy.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, check out Bruins Nation.
Ben Howland and the UCLA Bruins are already off to a strong start to their 2012 recruiting efforts. Top-100 prospects Jordan Adams and Dominic Artis have already committed to play at Westwood, but don't think for a moment Howland and his staff and done.
Shabazz Muhammad, the No. 1 ranked player for the 2012 class, and while his recruitment has been closely followed for months, not too much is known at this point other than he likes the UCLA program. The name that has been making the most news in recent days is Kyle Anderson.
What's the latest update on Anderson? According to a report from Bruins Ball, the forward currently favors UCLA:
Kyle Anderson, a 6'9 product out of New Jersey and the top ranked point guard in the 2012 class, is said to be choosing between St John's, Seton Hall, Florida, Georgetown, and UCLA. Sources close to Anderson have indicated, though, that Anderson is leaning toward playing for Ben Howland and the UCLA Bruins at the moment.
Once thought to be a hard pull from the east coast, Anderson said he has no qualms playing as far away from home as California.
"I could see myself out here (in California). Distance is not an issue. It's all about style of play and my history with the coaches," he told C2C Hoops yesterday at the Boost Mobile Elite 24 in Venice Beach, California. Anderson had 18 points and 8 assists and was co-MVP of the event.
Anderson has not made certain plans to visit any schools except Florida, which he plans to visit the weekend of September 16th. Anderson said that he is going to visit the other schools on his list, but that he has been on the UCLA campus many times before so he is unlikely to use an official visit to Westwood, which is not a bad sign for Bruin fans.
Anderson's commitment to the program would be absolutely huge for UCLA, though he will not be an easy pull for Howland and his staff. While it appears the forward will not make a decision for at least another month or two -- if not longer, to be perfectly honest -- the Bruins appear to have all of the momentum at the moment.
For more UCLA coverage, check out Bruins Nation.
The top college basketball recruit in the country for next year is leaning really strongly at the UCLA Bruins. Shooting guard Shabazz Muhammad from Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas (#1 on ESPN, #1 on Rivals) is certainly giving all the indications that he wants to be playing his college basketball in Westwood. And it's very likely he might be bringing someone along with him.
Muhammad has a good friend who also happens to be a great basketball talent, fellow Elite 24 recruit Kyle Anderson from St. Anthony's in Jersey City (#5 on ESPN, #3 on Rivals). Anderson and Muhammad both visited the Bruins together less than a month ago. Now Adam Zagoria talks up the possibility at Five Star Basketball of the two of them playing together, because there's only one school intersecting both of their lists.
And if you don't think the two elite prospects have talked about playing with one another in college, think again.
"We're thinking about it a lot," the 6-foot-8 Anderson from St. Anthony said Friday afternoon by phone from the event. "I mean, we're thinking about it. I don't know how far it will go, but there's a definitely a possibility it could happen."
Asked if UCLA was the only potential landing spot for both players, Anderson said, "Yes."
There's almost no doubt that securing verbals from Muhammad and Anderson would propel UCLA to the top college basketball recruiting class in the country. Now all Bruins fand can do is wait, and hope the two are willing to give UCLA fans the best freshman backcourt in the country a season from now. Anderson does have a lot of potential suitors--with St. John's sticking out the most to him--but if he plans on teaming up with Shabazz, there's only one place he can go next fall.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, go to Bruins Nation.
Turns out Justin Combs just wasn't visiting UCLA so his dad could hang out with famous Bruin NBA alumni in summer school. Combs is seriously interested in becoming a Bruin, and he received an offer from Rick Nehuheisel this weekend. Brandon Huffman of Scout had the original report.
Combs does have some solid Divison-I offers from schools like Illinois, Iowa, West Virginia and Virginia. This is his first major West Coast offer.
This isn't just a publicity stunt. Combs does appear to be an up-and-coming cornerback with decent measurables. Although he hasn't been ranked by any of the major services, Combs does appear to be attracting attention for reasons that don't involve his dad enthralling the local recruits. He still has to work on his form tackling, but you figure that he shows enough flashes for coaches to really like where he's sitting.
He also brought Nicki Minaj to his 16th birthday party. Intangibles, check!
For more on UCLA football recruiting, check out Bruins Nation.
It's a big day for UCLA Bruins recruitniks, as two of their biggest targets are both on campus today. Shabazz Muhammad you probably have all heard about a hundred thousand times--top recruit in the country, big on UCLA, same old same old--but Kyle Anderson is also in town, and could prove to be just as valuable as Muhammad in providing the Bruins with offensive firepower.
Anderson is from St. Anthony in Jersey City, New Jersey, and at 6'7, 210" is widely considered one of the most unique players in this year's class because of his ability to not only play point guard but also showcase his ability as a forward as well. Some of his top schools include Arizona, Georgetown, Seton Hall, St. John's, UCLA, Villanova and Xavier, and with Anderson, Georgetown might be the school to beat.
Athlete Devin Fuller has released a top 11. I know, you must be saying, he's probably only twenty weeks away from making a final decision! But this list used to be much, much longer. So this is important news!
Mike Farrell at Rivals came by the names of the schools Fuller has narrowed it down to.
Word on the street is that Fuller wants a chance to play quarterback whereever he goes, and UCLA would certainly offer him that opportunity since they don't have a QB commit from this class and the Pistol offense would allow for that luxury. However, Nebraska has their eyes set on Fuller as their top quarterback target ($), so the Bruins have some heavy competition.
For more on UCLA football recruiting at SB Nation, check out Bruins Nation (UCLA).
Jordan Bell is a top 2013 rising talent on the hardwood. A 6'7", 205 pound power forward who has shown a great propensity for leaping, lending himself well to defense, shot-blocking and rebounding, the Long Beach Poly junior figures to be a huge West Coast get for whatever team gets him. Bell is regarded highly by ESPN, ranking as the 22nd best power forward and the 94th best hoopster from the Class of 2013. In an interview he did with Coast 2 Coast Hoops, he mentioned things he has to work on include his back to the basket game and overall offense, which are commonplace issues for a young power forward.
Matt Prehm of 247Sports reports Bell's current preferences early in the process, and the two Los Angeles colleges figure prominently: Both the USC Trojans and UCLA Bruins are in Bell's top 5, along with the Oregon Ducks, Texas Longhorns and Arizona Wildcats. Bell just received an Oregon offer to go along with his current offers from USC and San Francisco and looks pretty thrilled, but based on the lofty status of his top 5, the process for Bell's recruitment might unfold over a long period of time.
For more on basketball recruiting, check each of these sites: Conquest Chronicles (USC), Bruins Nation (UCLA), Addicted to Quack (Oregon), Burnt Orange Nation (Texas) and Arizona Desert Swarm (Arizona)
College basketball recruiting coverage is one strange, strange game. You'll hear all sorts of differing info, top 15 lists, similar information filtering from the top recruits, and all of it compounding as the season nears closer. Shabazz Muhammad, perhaps the top recruit in the 2012 class, is the target of such news on a daily basis, and UCLA Bruins fans (who believe they are one of the favorites in this race) are hanging on his every word. No official news has creeped out, but Muhammad does appear to be on the verge of trimming his list soon.
If UCLA fans want some good news, one of their commits is happy to oblige them. Chip Sylvie, who covers the AAU circuit in the Midwest corridor (Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana), recently talked to Bruins verbal Jordan Adams from the hoops famous Oak Hill Academy, and he had these words to say.
He is still quite sure Shabazz Muhammad is following him to UCLA
Those words must look like fine art to the Sons of Westwood.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, Bruins Nation is where you want to go.
The top basketball recruit in the country just wrapped up attending the Adidas Super 64 in Las Vegas, and played fairly well in his hometown. Bishop Gorman small forward Shabazz Muhammad is the clear prize for the top college basketball schools, and he's made his preferences clear early in the process. One of them appears to be the Sons of Westwood.
He elucidated on his feelings about UCLA and the recruiting process in general with an interview with Bluegrass Hoops (check out the full interview below).
Interviewer: "I did see Coach [Ben] Howland here and I know UCLA is in good shape, so what is it about UCLA that you're attracted to?"
Muhammad: "Uh, it's first of all it's Coach Howland ... I went up there ... the campus is beautiful, the academics is great, I love their basketball program, it's just a great school."
Muhammad has offers from every major college basketball program in the country, including both USC and UCLA, but the Bruins seem to be one of the top targets for Muhammad, along with programs like the Duke Blue Devils and Kentucky Wildcats which he also mentioned in the interview. This is shaping up to be one heck of a recruiting battle.
For more on UCLA basketball recruiting, Bruins Nation is your destination.
Other than maybe Florida or Texas, Southern California always seems to offer the most exciting group of talent every season. There's a lot of great players in the region, and there's always a lot of great talent interested in playing in the region. The former is due to the vast city of Los Angeles and its massive urban sprawl that covers the valleys of Southern California. The latter is mostly thanks to the presence of two of the most nationally relevant programs on the west coast of the country.
We will be following both of the two major schools in the conference: The USC Trojans (particularly with their football moves) and the UCLA Bruins (with their basketball moves) will both be monitored quite a bit. We will also take a look at the aspiring young prepsters in the Southern California region and monitoring where they'd be interested in playing at the collegiate level. Stay tuned to SB Nation Los Angeles for further updates, as well as Conquest Chronicles (USC) and Bruins Nation (UCLA)!
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