Saturday, September 24, 2011

Take a bow, Kaz, thanks for sharing this on BZ!

Zagoria Column: Featured Future Pro, UCLA’s Kyle Anderson

By Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog
September 24, 2011

Kyle Anderson isn’t on’s 2013 Mock Draft board just yet, but the talented point guard could end up in the NBA by 2014.

The 6-foot-8 Anderson out of Jersey City (N.J.) St. Anthony has an extremely high basketball IQ and has drawn comparisons to Magic Johnson, Jalen Rose and a young Lloyd Daniels.

“He’s got a chance to be one-and-done, but he’s gotta play with some good players,” said one Division 1 assistant coach who recruited Anderson. “He’s gotta do some things with his body to get him ready.

“I don’t think the family’s going to rush it. I think two years [of college], he should be good. You gotta work your ass off.

Anderson on Monday ended a much-hyped recruiting process by choosing UCLA over Seton Hall, St. John’s, Florida and Georgetown, crushing the souls of many Seton Hall fans in the process.

In addition to the appeal of the warm weather and ambience of Los Angeles, Anderson decided that Bruins head coach Ben Howland was the best man to prepare him for a pro career.

Howland has tutored current NBA point guards Russell Westbrook, Darren Collison and Jrue Holiday.

“I think it had a lot to do with Lil Kyle’s decision,” Kyle Anderson Sr. said in an interview with Clay Dade on Blog Talk Radio. “He saw that as UCLA being able to get their guards to the league. I’m not as sold on that aspect as he is. I believe for the most part players that go into college, if they’re a pro, they’re a pro.

“There’s not a lot of developing into pros unless you’re a big man. Guards, if you’re a pro when you go to college, people know you’re a pro. So I think Lil Kyle put a lot of emphasis on that, but myself I really didn’t.”

Anderson Sr. raised his son to be a point guard since he was a young boy, and last year he helped lead St. Anthony to an undefeated season and a mythical national championship under Naismith Hall of Fame coach Bob Hurley.

“From the neck on up, he’s the best high school player in America, irrespective of class, right now,” longtime New York recruiting expert Tom Konchalski said.

“He elevates your basketball IQ. He has a basketball IQ on steroids.”

Yet because he goes by the nickname “SloMo” and is not the most agile defender in the world, there have always been questions about his defense at the next level and beyond.

“One of [his goals] is improving his defense,” his father said. “Improving his ability to take the 3-point shot and make the 3 point shot and also playing around players that are pros, as we project he will be.”

UCLA already has a point guard committed for 2012 in Dominic Artis of Oakland, and Anderson said he would be happy to play alongside Artis in the backcourt.

“I am looking forward to playing in the back court with Dom Artis,” Anderson said. “Dom can play both positions so when we are on the floor together it doesn’t matter who has the ball, kinda like when I played with Myles Mack [at St. Anthony] and we were very successful playing together.”

Going forward, Anderson could play some type of point forward role. He is an excellent passer, sees the floor extremely well and makes smart decisions with the ball.

“He’s a G-rated version of Lloyd Daniels,” Konchalski said. “You had to have seen Lloyd Daniels in his prime to realize what a supreme complement that is.”

Anderson has also been compared to Magic and called a right-handed Rose.

High praise indeed, but he is indeed a special talent and a high-character young man, too. Expect to see him shaking David Stern’s hand after a year or two in Westwood.

Kyle Anderson: The "Bigger" Picture

Thanks for sharing on BZ, Kaz!

Kyle Anderson: The "Bigger" Picture
September 24, 2011 7:53am ET

Kyle Anderson's recruiting journey was one of the most publicized high school events in recent memory. And up until the day he committed to the UCLA Bruins, Anderson never tipped his hand on which direction he was leaning, further compounding speculation and attention around the process.

Why UCLA? And why not Seton Hall, St. John's, Florida or Georgetown?

Those were the questions we sought to answer in our sit-down with Kyle, Kyle Anderson Sr., St. Anthony coach Bob Hurley and N.J. Playaz Director Jimmy Salmon.

What we quickly found out is that Kyle's decision was a very strategic one, mirroring past calls to play the point guard position and always being surrounded by winners.

Click 'Play' above to go behind the scenes with Kyle and Co., and learn more about his college decision, comparison to Magic Johnson and more.

Interview With UCLA Guard Tyler Lamb

Thanks to you, sydbruin, for posting this on BZ!

Interview With UCLA Guard Tyler Lamb

by Brett Pierce
Published on 09-23-2011 12:25 AM 5 Comments

Here is a exclusive interview with UCLA Sophomore Guard Tyler Lamb.

How has your offseason been?

Tyler Lamb: It’s been really good. I’ve been working out two-a-days. I was working out at home and working out at school when I was at summer school. So it’s been really good. I’ve gotten a lot better.

What specifically would you do to train?

Tyler Lamb:
Working on my overall strength and quickness, and just on my body overall. I’ve been shooting a lot of jump shots every day. Jumps shots off the dribble, jump shots off the kick out, so all types of game related things that I’ll have to do during the game.

Do you feel a lot different between last year and this year, both physically and mentally?

Tyler Lamb:
Oh definitely! I mean, freshman year is a lot of learning. Now that I’ve gotten a year of that under my belt and now knowing what Coach Howland expects out of us, it just makes everything easier.

Coming out of Mater Dei you were known to have a great shot and then last season your shooting wavered. Was that a confidence thing? Was it a technique thing?

Tyler Lamb:
I think it was both. Everybody can always have better technique, but it was mainly a confidence thing, I’d say. My first jump shots weren’t going in and I just kind of got in my head and it spun the wrong way for the season.

Were you surprised by how much harder you have to work in college to succeed athletically?

Tyler Lamb:
Yeah, it was something new for me. But I’m really excited for this year.

What are your expectations both for yourself and the team this season?

Tyler Lamb:
I know definitely, as a team, the goal is to win the Pac-12 Championship and make a good run in the NCAA Tournament. Individually, I want to be a starter. I want to make the 1st Team All-Pac-12 Defensive Team and make one of the Pac-12 Teams offensively. I set myself to high standards.

Who else on the team has impressed you this offseason?

Tyler Lamb:
Honestly, everybody. I know everybody has been working hard. The Wear twins, Zeke, Reeves, those guys have been working very hard. The new guys came in and they’ve been working very hard. Anthony Stover has had a great offseason and has been working out really hard. It just feels like everybody is ready. Everybody has a bad taste in their mouths from last year.

How has Josh Smith been? I know a few months ago Coach Howland said that Josh wasn’t where he needed to be conditioning wise.

Tyler Lamb:
I haven’t seen Josh, but I’ve heard he’s been doing good. I’ve been at home and he’s been at home also. We’ve both been working out at home because we’ve been on campus since we graduated high school.

It sounds like you guys are ready for a big season.

Tyler Lamb:
I’m definitely ready for a big season. I think we’re going to surprise a lot of people this year.

Parker to Visit UCLA

Thanks to Kaz for sharing this on BZ!



Tony Parker
6'9'', 270 lbs. | Class of 2012
Hometown: Lithonia, GA
School: Miller Grove High School
Position: Power Forward

Parker to Visit UCLA

By Adam Zagoria on September 22, 2011, 5:35PM

On the heels of Kyle Anderson’s commitment to UCLA Monday night comes still more good new for the Bruins.

Tony Parker, a skilled 6-foot-9, 250-pound forward from Lithonia (Ga.) Miller Grove, will visit UCLA the weekend of Sept. 29.

“Yes,” he confirmed to by text.

Parker is coming off a recent visit to Ohio State and is also considering Memphis, Duke and Georgetown.

He has taken three unofficials to Memphis and may visit Duke the weekend of Oct. 29.

“He’s got probably five, if not six, schools that he’s stil looking at,” said Norm Parker, Tony’s AAU coach with the Georgia Stars. “He’ll make his five visits without a doubt. He’s going to take his time.”

UCLA already has Anderson, point guard Dominic Artis of Findlay Prep and wing Jordan Adams of Oak Hill committed, and they remain in the hunt for shooting guard Shabazz Muhammad, the consensus No. 1 player in the Class of 2012.

As first reported at, Anderson and Muhammad are talking about combining at UCLA.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Anderson's commitment huge for Howland, UCLA

Anderson's commitment huge for Howland, UCLA

By Gary Parrish
Posted on: September 20, 2011 6:21 am
Edited on: September 20, 2011 10:48 am

You can blame it on underclassmen leaving early or on a recruiting lull.

Or on a combination of the two.

Either way, Ben Howland hasn't tasted a Sweet 16 since he made three consecutive Final Fours from 2006 to 2008, and many had started to wonder about his long-term viability at UCLA. Had his style of play run its course in Los Angeles? Could he still consistently recruit elite-level prospects? Was his hiring of a summer coach from the Atlanta Celtics program a sign that Howland was getting desperate?

Those are the questions basketball people spent July asking each other.

Now a new question must be asked: Is Howland suddenly in position to make a fourth Final Four?

That's how significant Kyle Anderson's commitment to the Bruins was late Monday. Not only did it give Howland a consensus top-five prospect from the Class of 2012, it also quieted critics and suggested UCLA's first season in what will be a renovated Pauley Pavilion could lead to Atlanta's Georgia Dome.

That's the site of the 2013 Final Four.

Pencil UCLA in for it if Howland next lures a commitment from Shabazz Muhammad -- a Las Vegas native and the top prospect in the Class of 2012 who, according to sources, is likely to choose the Bruins over Duke, Kansas, Kentucky and UNLV. It should also be noted that Howland's assistant from the Atlanta Celtics (Korey McCray) has UCLA seriously involved with a pair of elite bigs from Georgia, specifically Tony Parker and Shaq Goodwin. Assuming the Bruins get just one of them, Howland could have a 2012-13 roster that looks like this:

G: Larry Drew
G: Shabazz Muhammad
F: Kyle Anderson (as primary ball-handler)
F: Reeves Nelson
C: Josh Smith

Key Reserves: David Wear, Travis Wear, Dominic Artis, Jordan Adams and Tony Parker/Shaq Goodwin.

That would be quite a collection of talent in Westwood.

Perhaps good enough to bring a 12th national championship to the school.

UCLA basketball: Jerime Anderson suspended after guilty plea

UCLA basketball: Jerime Anderson suspended after guilty plea

By Ben Bolch
The Los Angelinos Timos
September 19, 2011 | 6:14pm

UCLA senior guard Jerime Anderson has been reinstated with a two-game suspension after pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges of appropriation of lost property and trespass in the wake of his July arrest for allegedly stealing a laptop computer.

Anderson will sit out the Bruins' exhibition game against Cal State San Bernardino on Nov. 6 and their regular-season opener against Loyola Marymount on Nov. 11.

As part of a plea agreement, Anderson must complete 300 hours of community service over a two-year period. If he has no other legal issues and completes his community service as scheduled, the charge of appropriation of lost property will be withdrawn and dismissed on Sept. 15, 2013.

"Jerime has been very remorseful in acknowledging his mistake and accepting responsibility for his actions," UCLA Coach Ben Howland said in a statement. "I believe he has learned a valuable lesson."

In a recent interview with The Times, Howland called the ordeal "a very humbling experience" for Anderson and said his absence as one of only two point guards on the Bruins' roster would be "crippling." Howland said junior college transfer De'End Parker and freshman Norman Powell could back up starting point guard Lazeric Jones, with freshman walk-on David Brown also a possibility to receive playing time in Anderson's absence.

Anderson averaged 5.1 points and 2.6 assists last season as Jones' backup.


UCLA suspends Jerime Anderson

By Peter Yoon
Updated: September 20, 2011, 12:30 AM ET

UCLA Bruins point guard Jerime Anderson pled guilty to two misdemeanor charges in connection with a stolen laptop and as a result will be suspended for the first two games of the season, the school announced Monday in a statement.

Anderson, a senior, was arrested by UCLA campus police July 26 on suspicion of grand theft after a tracking device on a MacBook Pro led authorities to him. He was released on $20,000 bail.

Last Thursday, Anderson's attorney, Jon Artz, was able to get the charges reduced to appropriation of lost property and trespass -- both misdemeanor charges.

Anderson will have to complete 300 hours of community service over the next two years, and if he does so and has no other legal issues, the appropriation of lost property charge will be dismissed.

"We demonstrated to the judge and to the prosecutor that Jerime comes from a family of hard working religious moral people," Artz said. "He's 21, he made a terrible mistake, he was remorseful, he cooperated with the police, admitted it to the police and it was so out of character and we provided evidence."

Coach Ben Howland had originally suspended Anderson from the team indefinitely pending the resolution of his legal proceedings, but said now that the case is resolved, Anderson would sit out UCLA's exhibition game Nov. 6 against Cal State San Bernardino and the regular-season opener Nov. 11 against Loyola Marymount.

"Now that the legal proceedings in conjunction with Jerime's arrest have been finalized, I am re-instating him to the team with a two-game suspension," Howland said in the statement. "Jerime has been very remorseful in acknowledging his mistake and accepting responsibility for his actions. I believe he has learned a valuable lesson."

Shortly after his arrest, Anderson posted on his Facebook page that he was "terribly sorry and embarrassed for my conduct and poor judgment that I've used recently. I have embarrassed my family, friends, teammates, coaches and university and I am extremely sorry for that," a post Artz said helped demonstrate Anderson's character.

Anderson is a backup point guard for UCLA. He averaged 5.0 points and 2.6 assists for the Bruins last season and emerged as a key player off the bench as the team's sixth man. At the season-ending banquet, he was awarded two awards: one for competitive spirit, inspiration and unselfish contributions and another as most improved player.

"I bet Jerime is a more serious, more hard working, more responsible young man as a result of this," Artz said.

UCLA, Arizona in a recruiting arms race

UCLA, Arizona in a recruiting arms race

By Diamond Leung
September, 20, 2011 9:00 AM ET

UCLA's recruiting class in 2012 shot up to No. 2 in the ESPNU rankings following the commitment of Kyle Anderson, the nation's fifth-ranked recruit who announced Monday night that he would become a Bruin.

The only class ranked higher than UCLA's belongs to longtime rival Arizona, and for both programs, there are still big-time players left on the board who they hope to ultimately secure.

For UCLA coach Ben Howland, the prize is No. 1 overall recruit Shabazz Muhammad, who, like his friend Anderson, can play the guard and small forward positions. The Bruins already have other top-100 commitments from small forward Jordan Adams and guard Dominic Artis.

For Arizona coach Sean Miller, his sights are set on No. 6 overall recruit Kaleb Tarczewski, a 7-foot center who would go well alongside power forwards Brandon Ashley and Grant Jerrett, the nation's No. 4- and No. 9-ranked recruits who are already committed to the Wildcats. Arizona also has a commitment from top-100 guard Gabe York.

This compilation of talent by two schools now recruiting on a national level helps elevate the stature of the Pac-12. Not only does it put pressure on the rest of the conference to catch up, but it also might set up two storied programs to make deep postseason runs and continue jostling going forward.

Here's a tweet from Miles Simon, the ESPN broadcaster who won a national championship playing for Arizona and experienced the old-school West Coast rivalry:

AZ and Ucla going at it reminds me of my playing days. Recruit for recruit, title for title. Going to be great battles for yrs to come

And how did Anderson, the New Jersey native who is heading to Westwood, describe his expectations for his freshman season?

"Of course, winning the national championship and being a strong contributor," Anderson told

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Kyle Anderson at peace with his choice of UCLA

Kyle Anderson at peace with his choice of UCLA

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

FAIRVIEW – Kyle Anderson used Twitter to break the news, but Tuesday he let his jacket do the talking.

Anderson, a former star at Paterson Catholic and a senior at St. Anthony, went to school Tuesday wearing a powder blue UCLA warm-up jacket.

It was his way of letting people know that New Jersey’s premier basketball recruit was headed west to play for Ben Howland and the Bruins.

“I think I did this because I just turned 18 and I think I want to grow up,” said Anderson, who celebrated his birthday Tuesday. “This is part of me maturing.”

The gazelle-like 6-foot-8 guard already is plenty mature on the court, and he approached this decision with great care. He had narrowed his choices to five big-time schools: UCLA, Seton Hall, Florida, St. John’s and Georgetown.

Anderson, a Fairview resident, took his last official visit last weekend to Florida and said he had a good time, but his choice came down to Seton Hall or UCLA.

Pirates coach Ralph Willard came to Anderson’s home in Fairview to make one more appeal Monday night.

“It was the hometown school, and with the fans being from New Jersey, it was tough,” Anderson said. “[I would tell the fans] please don’t boo me at games.”

After Willard left, Anderson met with his family and said he wanted to be a Bruin. They started calling coaches to tell them the news. Word leaked out on Anderson’s Twitter page about 10:30 p.m., which wasn’t part of the plan because Anderson wanted to announce it on his birthday.

“I don’t know what happened last night. I don’t know how it got out,” said Anderson, who had more than 25 texts and calls he hadn’t returned Tuesday. “Honestly.”

In the end, Anderson chose style — West Coast style. He’ll supply the substance.

“The way the Pac-12 is, it’s more spread out, and I like what a good job Coach Howland has done and does with his point guards,” Anderson said. “He lets them play. It’s a much more guard-oriented offense.”

Anderson said if someone asked during the last two weeks where he he’d wind up, he would say Seton Hall.

“It was tough calling the other four schools, but Coach Willard was the toughest,” Anderson said. “He did such a great job recruiting me. They had their eye on me, and to tell them I wouldn’t be there in the fall … it was tough. I just decided UCLA was a better fit.”

“I think with the five schools we narrowed it down to, he couldn’t go wrong with any of the schools,” said Kyle Anderson Sr., Kyle’s father and coach with the Playaz AAU program. “I think Seton Hall did the best job recruiting him, but in this business, the best recruiter doesn’t always win.

“You can recruit as hard as you want and as well as you want, but each student-athlete has to make his own choice and there are various factors with each of them. There is no textbook way of how to recruit someone, but if there was, Seton Hall did it.”

Anderson seemed at peace with his decision. It’s no longer a big deal for a New Jersey kid who grew up in the shadow of New York City to go cross-country.

With the mechanisms of big-time AAU basketball, Anderson has played all over the country. He’s already been to UCLA three times.

Part of the allure of UCLA is it arguably is the most storied college basketball program. It has the specter of John Wooden, Pauley Pavilion and a record 11 national championships. UCLA was 23-11 last season.

“There are a lot of great players to come from UCLA,” Anderson said. “When you play for them, you want to keep the tradition going. You won’t be remembered there if you aren’t winning.”

Anderson comes from a basketball family and has been devoted to the game since he was a child. The family dog is named Magic, for Earvin “Magic” Johnson, of course. Johnson was a point guard in Los Angeles for a long time, and Anderson hopes he can bring a similar kind of excitement.

St. Anthony star Kyle Anderson stayed poised during recruiting process before choosing UCLA

St. Anthony star Kyle Anderson stayed poised during recruiting process before choosing UCLA

By Matthew Stanmyre/The Star-Ledger
Published: Wednesday, September 21, 2011, 4:30 AM

The blue-clad Seton Hall University fans filed into the gym at Paterson Kennedy High School last week, a group of more than 100 people that filled the bleachers for Kyle Anderson’s fall league basketball game.

As Anderson, the highly rated 6-8 senior swingman from St. Anthony High, tried to focus on the game, he couldn’t help but note the most unusual recruiting tactic during what had been a frenzied battle for the coveted player.

“Sometimes it’s been a little bit overwhelming,” said Anderson, a First-Team All-State selection for The Star-Ledger who is rated the No. 2 overall prospect in the class of 2012, according to

“But you’ve got to think of the bright side. There are millions of kids that want to be in my position and be wanted by all these schools.”

In the end, the efforts by Seton Hall’s fans couldn’t sway Anderson, who verbally committed to UCLA Monday night. He chose the Bruins over Seton Hall, St. John’s, Georgetown and Florida.

The decision marked the end of an intense recruiting war for Anderson, whom scouts love for his blend of size and versatility.

The past few months he has been deluged with messages from fans sent to his
Facebook and Twitter accounts. His cell phone has seemed to constantly buzz for long stretches. No matter where he went, people asked about his college decision.

“It’s just been crazy,” Anderson said. “But I’m happy it’s over with.”

Anderson has been a highly touted player since his freshman season at Paterson Catholic, which closed after the 2009-2010 school year, prompting his transfer to St. Anthony. This past season, he helped lead the Friars to a 33-0 record and coach Bob Hurley’s fourth national title.

Anderson grew up playing the point guard position, but a massive growth spurt allowed him to sprout to his current height, while keeping his ball-handling skills. He selected UCLA largely because of coach Ben Howland’s track record with grooming guards such as Russell Westbrook, Jrue Holiday and Darren Collison for the NBA.

“Certainly this kid, as he should right now, is dreaming the dream about playing professionally,” Hurley said. “(He) thinks coach Howland will give him a good chance to continue to develop as a player.”

Anderson informed UCLA of his decision Monday night, not long after a home visit with Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard.

“I thought it was the best fit for me,” Anderson said. “I really liked it from the beginning.”

Kyle Anderson’s commitment raises hopes for UCLA resurgence

Kyle Anderson’s commitment raises hopes for UCLA resurgence

By Jeff Eisenberg
Yahoo Sports
Tue Sep 20 09:59am EDT

In the three-plus years since Kevin Love and Darren Collison propelled UCLA to its third straight Final Four in 2008, the Bruins have missed the NCAA tournament altogether once and failed to get out of the first weekend twice.

Expect the 2012-13 season to be UCLA's return to the national stage.

Although the Bruins lack the perimeter talent to complement one of the nation's deepest and most talented frontcourts next season, the 2012 recruiting class coach Ben Howland has reeled in should replenish the roster.

Versatile 6-foot-8 point forward Kyle Anderson, the No. 2 prospect in's class of 2012 rankings, committed to UCLA late Monday night, selecting the Bruins over Florida, Georgetown and hometown Seton Hall. The New Jersey native adds his unique blend of size, vision and facilitating skills to a class that already includes four star forward Jordan Adams and quick-rising point guard Dominic Artis and may yet include some more top talent.

UCLA has long been considered one of the favorites to land Shabazz Muhammad, a Las Vegas native who is the class 0f 2012's consensus top-ranked prospect. Furthermore, new assistant coach Korey McCray reportedly has made serious inroads with a pair of big men from his former state, Georgia's Shaq Goodwin and Tony Parker.

It's always dangerous to think more than one year ahead at UCLA because of Howland's history of players leaving for the NBA a year earlier than expected, but consider the lineup the Bruins could field if Muhammad commits.

Either Artis or North Carolina transfer Larry Drew would start at point guard with the trio of Muhammad, Anderson and defensive stopper Tyler Lamb sharing time at wing. Reeves Nelson and Joshua Smith would start in the frontcourt if both return to school for another year, but even if one leaves, twins Travis and David Wear or defensive specialist Anthony Stover are all adequate replacements.

A potential resurgence for UCLA could coincide with a revival for the recently struggling Pac-12's basketball fortunes.

Two straight monster recruiting classes for Arizona's Sean Miller have the Wildcats in position to potentially contend for a Final Four again in 2013. Furthermore, Washington should be better in two years than next season assuming young perimeter talents Tony Wroten and Terrence Ross haven't left for the professional ranks.

Arizona's surprise run to the Elite Eight last March not withstanding, it has been a bleak couple of years for the Pac-12, which was gutted by early defections in 2008 and 2009 and then experienced too much coaching turnover to quickly replenish its rosters. The 2012-13 season, however, may be the year the league finally returns to the forefront.

Kyle Anderson's commitment to UCLA may not sway Shabazz Muhammad

Kyle Anderson's commitment to UCLA may not sway Shabazz Muhammad

Ben Bloch, Los Angeles Times
September 19, 2011 | 10:54pm

Ron Holmes, whose son Shabazz Muhammad (pictured at left) is widely considered the top high school senior in the country, said Kyle Anderson's commitment to UCLA would not necessarily sway his son's college decision.

"They are good friends and have talked about playing college ball together," Holmes said in a text message, "but they both at the end of the day have to do what's best for themselves."

The commitment of Anderson, a 6-foot-8 point guard-forward from Jersey City (N.J.) St. Anthony's, bolsters what is shaping up as one of the top recruiting classes in the nation. The Bruins had already received commitments from highly touted shooting guard Jordan Adams of Mouth of Wilson (Va.) Oak Hill Academy and point guard Dominic Artis of Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep.

"We all have one common goal, and that's to win a national championship," said Anderson, who picked UCLA over Seton Hall, Georgetown, Florida and St. John's.

Anderson said he was not scared off by a potential logjam at point guard in Westwood for the 2012-13 season. In addition to Artis and Anderson, the Bruins will have North Carolina transfer Larry Drew II, who will be in his final year of collegiate eligibility.

Anderson said UCLA Coach Ben Howland's record of producing successful NBA point guards was a major selling point. Recent Bruins Jordan Farmar, Russell Westbrook and Darren Collison have all become productive professional players.

Anderson said he was also looking forward to playing in the renovated Pauley Pavilion.

"That would be pretty cool, to be there for the first game," he said.

As far as trying to lure Muhammad to complete the recruiting class, Anderson said, "We'd love for Shabazz to come along with us." Holmes said his son, a 6-6 forward from Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, has not scheduled his official visit to UCLA.

SHU upset by Kyle Anderson's decision

SHU upset by Kyle Anderson's decision

By John Lopiano, Assistant Sports Editor
The Setonian
Published: Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Updated: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 13:09

The Seton Hall campus breathed a collective sigh of frustration on Monday evening as one of the most heralded recruitment processes in recent memory came to a sudden end.

Kyle Anderson, regarded as one of the premier recruits in the high school class of 2012, announced he would be playing for coach Ben Howland at UCLA after graduation and not Seton Hall.

"Had a great family meeting," Anderson said via his Twitter account at around 10 p.m. "I've decided to be a UCLA BRUIN!!"

The decision came after a long recruitment process which saw Anderson's interest dwindle to just five teams as of two weeks ago. After Georgetown and St. John's were bumped, the list contained just three schools: Florida, UCLA, and Seton Hall.

Anderson, a native of Fairview, N.J., has been considered one of the most unique players in the nation over the last three years, first while a freshman at Paterson Catholic and then after his transfer to St. Anthony's in 2009. At 6-8, 210 lbs., Anderson is capable of playing several positions but has stated he would explicitly like to play point guard in college.

Last year for St. Anthony, as a junior, Anderson averaged 14.4 points per game, 7.5 rebounds per game, and 4.2 assists per game. In the 2010-11 season he played alongside teammate Myles Mack who will play for Rutgers University during the upcoming season.

St. Anthony finished last season with a 33-0 record and a national title victory. The national title is coach Bob Hurley's fourth.

Anderson's roller coaster recruitment was sure to disappoint someone, but for Seton Hall the pain will linger a little longer. Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard's recruitment was flawless, according to Anderson's father, Kyle Anderson, Sr.

"I think with the five schools we narrowed it down to, he couldn't go wrong with any of the schools," Anderson's father said in an interview with The Bergen Record. "I think Seton Hall did the best job recruiting him, but in this business, the best recruiter doesn't always win.

"There is no textbook way of how to recruit someone, but if there was, Seton Hall did it."

The pressure on Anderson to stay home was heavy. Even after his announcement, Anderson tweeted "the last thing I want [out of] all this is to still go to SHU games and have SHU still on my side!!"

On campus, the reaction to losing out on a recruit as lauded as Anderson has been understandably grim.

"It's definitely disappointing," said Connor McCormick, a senior at Seton Hall. "I think Willard and his staff did everything they possibly could, but not landing him is pretty devastating for a program looking to get back into contention."

Last week over 100 Seton Hall fans, adorned in blue and white, packed the Kennedy High School gym in Paterson, N.J. for Anderson's fall league game, holding signs and cheering his name. This wasn't the fans' first display of support either.

During his official visit in early September, students crowded him as he walked around campus with former AAU teammates and current Seton Hall players Jordan Theodore and Fuquan Edwin. The campus has been buzzing ever since he showed interest.

"His recruitment ignited such a craze around here," McCormick added. "Just imagine if he had come here, how it would have affected this school."

Despite the best efforts of both the coaching staff and the fans, Anderson will take his talents to a storied UCLA program, one that holds many NCAA records including 11 National Championships and 18 Final Four appearances.

According to Anderson, his decision was difficult and involved much consideration; however he was intrigued by coach Howland's ability to run a guard orientated offense at UCLA, one that has produced NBA stars such as Russell Westbrook and Darren Collison.

"Sometimes it's been a little bit overwhelming," Anderson said in an interview with the Star Ledger. "It's just been crazy, but I'm happy it's over with."

Kyle Anderson Highlights - Kevin Durant's #1 Player in Class of 2012 - Future UCLA Bruin


Published on Sep 20, 2011 by CityLeagueHoopsTV

Kyle Anderson is ranked #2 in the country by Rivals, but Kevin Durant sees it differently, he recently dubbed Anderson the best player in the country in the class of 2012. It's easy to see why the 6'8 point guard from New Jersey gets such high praise. Nicknamed "Slow-Mo", Anderson isn't the most athletic player on the court in most cases but his basketball IQ and advanced skill set keep him a notch above the competition. Kyle recently committed to play college ball at UCLA.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Kenny Smith and Kyle Anderson talk shop

From Five Star Basketball.

Thanks to Kaz for sharing on BZ.

Kyle Anderson commits to UCLA, choosing Bruins over Seton Hall

Kyle Anderson commits to UCLA, choosing Bruins over Seton Hall

By Brendan Prunty/The Star-Ledger
Published: Monday, September 19, 2011, 10:37 PM
Updated: Tuesday, September 20, 2011, 12:27 AM

It's official: Kyle Anderson is heading west.

Ninety minutes before his 18th birthday, the highly sought-after St. Anthony recruit announced on his Twitter page Monday night that he will attend UCLA in 2012. The 6-foot-8 point guard from Fairview chose the Bruins over Seton Hall after a long, drawn-out recruiting battle.

The decision came down to the very last hours, with Anderson and his family entertaining Pirates coach Kevin Willard for his final in-home visit with the recruit.

As internet rumors began to swirl that Anderson had officially chosen UCLA, the first-team Star-Ledger all-state selection last year Tweeted for everyone to pump the brakes on that line of thinking.

"NOTHING IS OFFICIAL!!!!!!!" Anderson tweeted, before following up that he was still discussing the decision with his family and for everybody to "relax."

Thirty minutes later, he announced he would be headed to Los Angeles to play for UCLA and head coach Ben Howland. His versatility at the point guard position was the main reason for the heavy recruiting war that came down to five schools in the end: UCLA, Seton Hall, Florida, Georgetown and St. John's.

Just this weekend, Anderson traveled to Florida for an official visit, taking in the Gators football game against rival Tennessee. But as the weekend drew to a close, smoke signals began to arise that his decision would come down to the Pirates and the Bruins. Willard, about to begin his second season as Seton Hall's head coach, had spent the majority of the summer trying to woo the St. Anthony star to South Orange.

Several recruiting analysts and websites said that Anderson would be an instant difference-maker for the Pirates and could instantly jump-start Seton Hall back into the recruiting mix.

According to, Anderson is rated as a five-star prospect. He is ranked No. 1 overall at the point guard position and No. 2 overall in the class of 2012.

Originally beginning his high school career at Paterson Catholic, Anderson transferred to the Jersey City powerhouse when the school closed after the 2009-10 school year. Behind Anderson, the Friars went 33-0 and won the Tournament of Champions title over Plainfield.

"We had no idea how good he was when he first got here," legendary St. Anthony coach Bob Hurley said recently.

Kyle Anderson picks UCLA Bruins

Kyle Anderson, photo source here.

Thanks to Kaz for hooking us up at BZ with this ESPN article following KA's commitment.

Kyle Anderson picks UCLA Bruins

By Dave Telep
ESPN Recruiting
Originally Published: September 19, 2011

Kyle Anderson (Fairview, N.J./St. Anthony) committed to the Bruins Monday night and by doing so has lifted the Bruins to No. 2 in the class rankings.

Anderson repeatedly stated that he would decide on Sept. 20, his birthday. The only deviation from his plan was word coming a day early. Other than that, Anderson stuck to the script. Seton Hall went into his home on Monday and afterward the No. 5 overall prospect in the country huddled together with his family and decided to commit to the Bruins over Seton Hall, Georgetown, Florida and St. John's.

"Me and my family stuck to our plan from the beginning to end, Anderson said. "I don't think I would change anything at all."

Anderson won a high school national championship with St. Anthony last year and the versatile wing joins forces with coach Ben Howland, a frequent visitor to the Final Four with UCLA. Winning was clearly a significant part of his decision, however, during the process, Anderson learned more and more about Howland's reputation on the defensive side of the ball.

"That's an area I need to improve to make it to the next level so he will help me out a lot," Anderson said. Often listed as a small forward, Anderson has a point guard's mentality and is comfortable with the ball in his hands ala Magic Johnson. Defensively, is where he's in position limbo.

Anderson sees big things for himself and the Bruins in his first year. "Of course, winning the national championship and being a strong contributor," Anderson said, while describing his ideal UCLA experience. "Staying at UCLA until I am ready to go to the NBA and enjoying the whole college process."

Anderson joins a stellar recruiting class with fellow ESPNU 100 commits SF Jordan Adams (Lawrenceville, Ga./Oak Hill) and PG Dominic Artis (Richmond, Calif./Findlay). However, the Bruins are still looking to add talent.

Anderson is thought to be close to Shabazz Muhammad (Las Vegas/Bishop Gorman), the nation's top prospect. "Bazz has to make his own decision based on what's best for him," Anderson said. "I do hope he comes though."

Kyle Anderson is Heading West








Thanks to Kaz for posting on BZ.

Kyle Anderson is Heading West

By Adam Zagoria on September 19, 2011, 10:32PM

One of the most intriguing and hyped recruiting processes in recent memory has finally come to an end.

And it leaves UCLA fans rejoicing, and Seton Hall and St. John’s fans heartbroken.

Kyle Anderson, a 6-foot-8 point guard from Jersey City (N.J.) St. Anthony, on Monday night chose to bring his talents to the West Coast instead of keeping them near his Fairview, N.J., home for family and friends to watch.

“I’ve decided to be a UCLA BRUIN!!” he Tweeted, adding by email that he “just made up his mind tonight.”

He chose the Bruins over Seton Hall, St. John’s, Florida and Georgetown.

Seton Hall finished second, even after Pirates coach Kevin Willard attended an open gym Monday at St. Anthony and then met with Anderson one last time during a home visit.

After growing up attending Seton Hall games and watching two former teammates player for the Pirates, Anderson Tweeted: “ Sorry #piratenation i love you guys!!!!!!”

He added: “The last thing i want outta all this is to still go to shu games and have shu still on my side!!”

In the end, Westwood and UCLA coach Ben Howland won the sweepstakes to arguably the best player in the country.

“From the neck on up, he’s the best high school player in America, irrespective of class, right now,” longtime New York recruiting expert Tom Konchalski told about Anderson earlier this month.

“He elevates your basketball IQ. He has a basketball IQ on steroids.”

Whether Anderson’s close friend, Shabazz Muhammad, ends up joining Anderson at UCLA remains to be seen.

“Kyle, me and him really want to play together in college,” Muhammad, a 6-6 shooting guard out of Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, told last month.

He added: “Yeah, I think it’s an option. We’ve been really talking about that. Pretty much he’s like my best friend now, so I’m always hanging around with him. We’re just talking about UCLA, what other schools he likes, what other schools I like.”

Dominic Artis, a 6-1 point guard from Findlay Prep, and Jordan Adams, a 6-5 shooting guard from Oak Hill Academy, have already pledged to the Bruins.

“I am looking forward to playing in the back court with Dom Artis,” Anderson said. “Dom can play both positions so when we are on the floor together it doesn’t matter who has the ball, kinda like when I played with Myles Mack and we were very successful playing together.”

Anderson previously said Howland often told this group what a special recruiting class they could be if they joined forces at UCLA.

“Yeah, yeah, he does,” Anderson said. “He definitely does. He tells us every time we come into the office. Just a great class we could have…and how the arena’s going to be renovated by the time we’re freshmen so he definitely talks about it a lot with us.”

Anderson added that he believes Howland can help improve him on both sides of the ball.

“They can help me get a more consistent jump shot from the long range,” Anderson said.

“I feel Coach Howland can [also] make me a better defensive player which will help me at the next level. Also, I like the PAC 12 and it’s wide open style of play.”

Konchalski believes Howland will make good on those promises.

“Ben Howland is a very defensive-oriented coach,” he said. “Ben Howland is going to make him a better defensive-oriented player. He’s going to demand that he works harder on defense.”

Anderson spent his first two years at Paterson (N.J.) Catholic before that school closed for financial reasons in June 2010. He then switched to St. Anthony and helped lead the Friars to an undefeated season (33-0) and a mythical national championship under Naismith Hall of Fame coach Bob Hurley.

After the Playaz Basketball Club lost in the quarterfinals of the Peach Jam, Anderson led them to titles at the Desert Duel and the End of Summer Classic. He took home MVP awards in both events, as well as at the Rumble in the Bronx earlier this summer and the inaugural Franchise Classic in The Bronx.

“All summer long his teams have won,” Hurley told this month. “Whether he played for St. Anthony’s or whether he played for the Playaz, they won. And when it comes down to it at the end of games, he makes plays. And you want somebody to give you statistics, but you also want a performance that counts. And that’s what he really does.”

“He makes people better,” Konchalski added. “He’s a recruiting magnet. Kids like to play with him because he gives the ball up. He really sees the floor. He is a gifted passer in much the same sense that Chris Mullin was a gifted passer. Chris Mullin made some touch passes where he never even really caught the ball. He would sort of direct the angle of his hands.

“Kyle Anderson just is so smart.”

Kyle Anderson is a Bruin!!!

Check out Kyle's original tweet here.

Welcome to Bruin Nation, Kyle!!!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Bruins Making Push For Arnaud Moto


Bruins Making Push For Arnaud Moto
Sept 17, 2011

Admin Brett Pierce posts:

"Moto is the No. 75 player in the country in the 2012 class. The small forward has narrowed his list to UCLA, Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, Miami, Florida, and Virginia Tech. He will visit UCLA sometime next weekend."

UCLA Recruiting 2013 Center BeeJay Anya


UCLA Recruiting 2013 Center BeeJay Anya


Special from's Joey Natale talks to 2013 center BeeJay Anya to break down his recruitment. Anya, a 6'8, 260lb post player from Dematha Catholic High School, is one of the most highly rated big men in the 2013 class.

Joey Natale: How did your AAU season go this summer?
BeeJay Anya: The summer went well. I feel like I did well. We (Team Takeover) came out strong but didn’t finish strong.

Natale: What are you looking forward to this high school season?
Anya: I definitely want to win a championship. I’m looking forward to playing with my teammates again. Just getting back and playing basketball.

Natale: What schools are recruiting you right now?
Anya: There are a lot of schools. Memphis, Syracuse, Kansas, UCLA, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Georgetown, Indiana, North Carolina, Duke, UConn, Rutgers, St. John’s, Florida, Florida State, Louisville, Arizona, Alabama and Ohio State.

Natale: Who are you talking to at UConn and what are they telling you?
Anya: I spoke to an assistant coach and I’ve spoken to coach Calhoun as well. I've met him in person too.

Natale: What about Syracuse?
Anya: Coach Autry. He just tells me I’ll be a great fit. And they’re recruiting my teammate Jerami Grant (2012) really hard; he just did an in home with them. We could play together again and have great chemistry.

Natale: Duke?
Anya: I spoke to an assistant coach there. They watched me a lot and they really like my game.

Natale: North Carolina?
Anya: I talked to Roy Williams once and another assistant coach. They’re going to be at my school Monday.

Natale: Do you have any visits planned?
Anya: No not right now.

Natale: Are there any leaders for you right now?
Anya: None right now. All the schools are the same, some of the schools that are recruiting my teammates. My teammate James Robison is committed to Pittsburgh and I’m interested in them too.

Natale: What are you trying to improve about your game?
Anya: I want to get in better shape and improve on my mid range jumper and speed. And I need to work on my ball handling skills as well.

Natale: What are some things you like to do off the court?
Anya: Just stuff like hanging with my friends and family. And playing video games too.

Natale: Who’s your favorite NBA player?
Anya: Its between Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant. But I play like Dwight Howard.

UCLA Has In Home Visit With Shabazz Muhammad


Thanks to Kaz for posting on BZ.

UCLA Has In Home Visit With Shabazz Muhammad

by AK Murthy
Published on 09-13-2011 09:38 PM

Coach Ben Howland just finished an in home visit with the Bruins' top 2012 target, Shabazz Muhammad. A 6'6 wing and the top prep prospect in the country, Muhammad is choosing between UCLA, Kentucky, Duke, Kansas, and UNLV.

After watching 2012 Bruin commit Dominic Artis at Findlay Prep in Las Vegas, Nevada on September 9th, Howland then went to the Muhammad household to have an in home visit, which was the first one scheduled for the 2012 wing.

"I thought it went really well," Muhammad told "I've had a relationship with coach Howland for so long now and we've talked so much that it wasn't anything new really, but it was good to do the visit. It was cool to hear about the new stadium too."

Muhammad said that Howland's coaching style and system were particularly appealing to him.

"Coach Howland is a mastermind on offense," Muhammad said. "He's a real genius when it comes to getting guys open and creating in the half court. I think I would do really well there."

"I like that UCLA is a premier program in the west too," he added. "Location isn't a deciding factor for me, but LA is close to home and would allow my family to see me more."

Muhammad also mentioned that he sees UCLA as a program on the rise because of their recruiting success as of late.

"UCLA has brought in a lot of good players in my class," he said. "Dominic Artis, Jordan Adams, they're great players and that's a big thing for me. I want to go somewhere where they have a lot of talent and we'll be competing for championships."

Bruins Ball also spoke with Ron Holmes, Muhammad's father.

"Shabazz will make a decision when he's ready and the time is right," said Holmes. "When he does make his decision, he'll be sure that it's the right one for him and for his future. He's a very intelligent kid so I know he's going to make the right decision, and he's got his entire family's support through the process."

"We've always been high on UCLA," he said. "It's a great west coast school with a lot of tradition and success, and we have great trust in Coach Howland."

Kyle Anderson plans to announce his choice next Tuesday, Sept 20.

Thanks goes to Kaz for sharing these 2 posts on BZ.

Elite recruit Kyle Anderson keeps Seton Hall fans guessing

By Jeff Eisenberg
The Dagger,, yahoo!
Wed Sep 14 03:33pm EDT

Seton Hall's quest to land elite Class of 2012 prospect Kyle Anderson is so important to the future of the program that Pirates fans will over-analyze any scrap of information to gain insight on what school the New Jersey native will choose.

As a result, expect a pair of cryptic Seton Hall-related tweets from Anderson to garner plenty of attention the next few days.

On the same night as Georgetown coach John Thompson III was at Anderson's house for an in-home visit, the 6-foot-8 point guard had this to say about Seton Hall:

"I want to know if i dont choose SHU will i still be able to come to all the games i been going to them every year since i was 9 lol," he wrote. "I love everything about SHU tho being a pirate will be great tho!! I hate wen ppl tell me not to go there."

Landing Anderson would be a game changer for a Seton Hall program that is attempting to climb back into the upper echelon of the Big East under second-year coach Kevin Willard.

Anderson, who attends New Jersey's famed St. Anthony's High School, is's No. 2 prospect in the Class of 2012 and is still considering UCLA, Florida, Georgetown and St. John's in addition to the Pirates. If he were to spurn those more established programs in favor of Seton Hall, it could be the spark the Pirates need to jumpstart a program that last made the NCAA tournament in 2006 and last won a tournament game in 2004.

The plan for Anderson is to announce his college destination next Tuesday night, so Seton Hall fans won't have to ponder his cryptic tweets too much longer. Until then, however, it will be an anxious week for the Pirates.


Anderson Tweets About ‘Being a Pirate’

By Adam Zagoria
September 14, 2011, 7:55AM

Kyle Anderson sure is a heck of a poker player.

He’s got everyone guessing about his future.

On the same night that he had a home visit with Georgetown head coach John Thompson III, the 6-foot-8 St. Anthony point guard tweeted about potentially picking Seton Hall.

“I want to know if i dont choose SHU will i still be able to come to all the games i been going to them every year since i was 9 lol,” he Tweeted.

“I love everything about SHU tho being a pirate will be great tho!! I hate wen ppl tell me not to go there,” he added.

Anderson has two former Paterson Catholic teammates currently at Seton Hall in Jordan Theodore and Fuquan Edwin.

Against this backdrop, Seton Hall fans plans to flock to his game Wednesday night in the Fall Ball League at Paterson (N.J.) Kennedy. They were out in force last week, as was reported here.

Meantime, Thompson and Hoyas assistant Robert Kirby visited Anderson Tuesday after taking in an open gym at St. Benedict’s Prep. Anderson was accompanied by his mother, Suzanne, his brother and sister.

Amid all this, others in the Anderson camp believe St. John’s is still very much in play.

And don’t count out Florida. He is headed there this weekend on an official visit that his father told could be “very instrumental” in his “recruiting process.”

Anderson plans to announce Sept. 20, his 18th birthday.


For more news and videos on this Mr. Anderson (not Keaanu Reeves), do a search on the blog by using the search box on right sidebar. The search box is there somewhere, I tell you. Right now, it's right after COB's SLAM "UCLA Don't call it a comback" cover and the prospects lists.

Tony Parker down to UCLA, Duke and Ohio State



Tony Parker
6'9'', 270 lbs. | Class of 2012
Hometown: Lithonia, GA
School: Miller Grove High School
Position: Power Forward

MalibouAL shared this on BZ. Thanks!

Georgia Tech and UGA haven’t quit on Atlanta basketball star visiting Duke, Ohio St. and UCLA

by Michael Carvell
10:30 am September 14, 2011

Georgia Tech and UGA haven’t given up on basketball star Tony Parker, who doesn’t have an official visit planned to either local school.

Both UGA coach Mark Fox and Georgia Tech assistant Chad Dollar showed up at Miller Grove High School this week to check on the 6-foot-9, 270-pound power forward who is ranked among the nation’s top 25 overall college basketball prospects.

Parker’s original top five was Duke, Ohio State, UCLA, Memphis and Georgetown but now it appears to be a three-horse race for his services.

After making an official visit to Ohio State last week, Parker rated it a “10” and is scheduled to welcome Buckeyes coach Thad Matta on Wednesday to the DeKalb County school. Parker said he has also set up recruiting trips to UCLA on Sept. 30 and Duke for Oct. 28. Memphis and Georgetown apparently have been eliminated.

“I think it’s smart that Georgia Tech and Georgia are still recruiting Tony,” Miller Grove basketball coach Sharman White told the AJC. “I wouldn’t give up. He’s a hometown guy. When you look at it, Georgia Tech and Georgia aren’t losing that much in time or money by checking on Tony. It’s not like they have to fly out to California to see him. He’s in their backyard. I think it’s smart for them to keep recruiting Tony because you never know how things turn out.”

Parker told the AJC he is considering taking an unofficial visit to Georgia Tech and/or UGA. His next scheduled recruiting trip will be in a couple of weeks to UCLA, which hired his longtime AAU coach from the Atlanta Celtics, Korey McCray, as an assistant in June. Parker’s close friend and teammate on the Atlantic Celtics, shooting guard Jordan Adams, has already committed to the Bruins.

Then there’s Duke next month. “I want to go visit Duke the same time as Alex Poythress” said Parker, referring to fellow top 25 national prospect from Clarksville, Tenn. The 6-foot-7 Poythress plays for Parker’s rival AAU team, the Georgia Stars.

Ohio State appears to be the frontrunner for Parker after last weekend’s visit. “I’d give that trip a 10,” Parker said. “I had a great time, and that school is at the top of my list. Well, it’s high on my list.”

“[Matta] is a great guy. I’m really digging the campus. They have a family-like atmosphere with the players and coaches that I love. I’m just all-around loving the school.”

Ohio State has another big factor working in its favor with Parker – NBA All-Star LeBron James. Parker and James became fast friends at a summer camp, and James has said he would’ve played at Ohio State if had not gone directly to the NBA.

“LeBron will be there [at Ohio State] next week for training,” Parker said. “I know he’s a big Ohio State fan. He watches their basketball and football games.” What advice has LeBron give Parker about Ohio State, or the recruiting process in general? “None, really. He doesn’t talk with me about that stuff.”

More on Mr. Parker here. Podcast: Where top uncommitted recruits will land

Thanks to bruinjake for hooking the BZ faithful with this.

Podcast: Where top uncommitted recruits will land

By Matt Norlander Eye on College Basketball
Posted on: September 13, 2011 1:35 pm

Recruits are becoming savvy to the game. Each year, it's taking longer and longer for more and more high-level recruits to commit to a school. Makes sense -- this is pretty much the last bastion of legitimate power they'll have until they get out of college and go on to earn buck at some sort of professional level.

So, with that in mind, I had Borzello hop onto the podcast and give you the most likely landing spots for these 10 undecided guys:

1.Shabazz Muhammad
2.Mitch McGary
3.Kyle Anderson
4.Archie Goodwin
5.Kaleb Tarczewski
6.DaJuan Coleman
7.Amile Jefferson
8.Alex Poythress
9.Rodney Purvis
10.Jarnell Stokes

Some seem inevitable, while a few others are true toss-ups. Listen to find out which guys on the list could very well drag out their recruitments all the way until April. That's right -- after the upcoming college basketball season, which is still seven weeks away from having games on television. We also discuss how Houston was able to pull off getting two top-100 guys, and why that label is actually a little misleading in this case.

To play podcast, visit site here.

Yayareasfinest2006: "Check out UCLA-bound Dominic "DA" Artis having a HUGE summer for the Oakland Soldiers"

Thanks to Kaz for posting on BZ.


Uploaded by Yayareasfinest2006 on Sep 12, 2011

"Check out UCLA-bound Dominic "DA" Artis having a HUGE summer for the Oakland Soldiers... Easily the best PG on the West Coast in 2012, is he the best in the nation? Watch this and you decide...

Check out UCLA-bound Dominic "DA" Artis having a HUGE summer for the Oakland Soldiers... Easily the best PG on the West Coast in 2012, is he the best in the nation? Watch this and you decide..."

Obekpa Hosts Trio of Schools

Thanks to Kaz for posting on Bruin Zone.


Christopher Obekpa
6'8'', 200 lbs. | Class of 2012
Hometown: Centereach, NY
School: Our Savior New American School
Position: Power Forward
Status: Undeclared

Obekpa Hosts Trio of Schools

By Adam Zagoria on September 12, 2011, 3:48PM

Chris Obekpa, a 6-foot-9 Nigerian power forward at Our Savior New American on Long Island, hosted head coaches from UCLA, Providence and Cincinnati on Sunday for in-home visits.

Ben Howland had Phil Mathews with him. Ed Cooley brought Andre LaFleur and Mick Cronin was accompanied by Darren Savino.

“Everything went well with each visit,” said assistant coach Eric Jaklitsch of Our Savior. “They all expressed their interest in Christopher and how much they want him.”

A native of Nigeria, Obekpa also plays sweeper on the school soccer team and was thus unavailable the first two days of the contact period.

He takes the SAT Oct. 1, and cannot take any officials until.

“We spoke about possibly taking an unofficial to Providence,” Jaklitsch said. “We spoke to UCLA and Cincinnati about taking official visits out there once he gets his SAT and everything.”

More on Chris Obekpa here.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Double Dribble

Thanks to bruinjake for sharing on Bruin Zone.

Double Dribble

By Wendy Soderburg
UCLA Magazine
Published Sep 9, 2011 12:00 AM

Although there won't be any home games in Pauley Pavilion this year, Bruin basketball fans are still looking forward to the start of the 2011-2012 season. Why? They'll be catching their first look at David and Travis Wear, the highly recruited McDonald's All-American twins who transferred from the University of North Carolina last year.

David (left) and Travis Wear representing UCLA and Bruin blue, ready for this season.

Sit down with identical twins David and Travis Wear — the 6'10" McDonald's All-Americans from Huntington Beach, Calif., who will be playing basketball for UCLA this fall — and you'll discover subtle differences.

For example, Dave enjoys the occasional cookie, while Travis refuses to eat junk food of any kind. Dave also tends to be the more adventurous twin, perhaps by virtue of his being the older brother (by one minute). When they were kids, Dave would always be the first to try a new skateboarding trick or attempt to catch the biggest wave — in Travis' words, "the first one to do something stupid."

On this sunny July afternoon in the J.D. Morgan Center on campus, the twins actually don't look that much alike: Dave, in a black T-shirt, sports slightly longer hair than close-cropped Travis, who is wearing white.

But those are minor differences. In almost every other way, the Wear brothers are very much alike, from their love of the outdoors to their taste in TV shows (The Office, Entourage, Discovery Channel). After being hotly recruited by several schools upon their high school graduation in 2009, the duo — who had always planned to attend the same school — narrowed their choices down to UCLA and the University of North Carolina (UNC).

The Wears chose UNC and, as freshmen, averaged 10-12 minutes per game under Coach Roy Williams. But after a year in which they both admitted to a bit of homesickness, they decided to come back home and play for UCLA. The brothers sat out the 2010-2011 season per NCAA transfer rules, but now they're chomping at the bit to join their teammates in playing Bruin basketball.

Big Gets Bigger

The Wear twins bring versatility to UCLA's already impressive big-man game this season. They can play both power forward and small forward, although Dave will probably see more time at the small forward position.

Together with forwards Reeves Nelson (6'8") and Brendan Lane (6'9") and centers Josh Smith (6'10") and Anthony Stover (6'10"), the brothers are part of what could be the most formidable front line in the newly formed Pac-12 (newcomers Utah, Colorado and the former Pac-10 schools). Actually, UCLA Head Men's Basketball Coach Ben Howland believes that with the added depth provided by the Wear twins, the Bruins will have one of the best front lines in the country.

"There will be a lot of competition for minutes," he says. "We've got Josh and Reeves returning as starters from the NCAA tournament games, and with the addition of the Wears, it gives us a lot more depth and strength."

Impressed by their playing ability early on, the UCLA coaches started recruiting the brothers when they were 9th graders at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Calif. Although he lobbied hard for them to come to Westwood, Howland learned in 2008 that the twins had decided to commit to UNC.

"It was devastating because we wanted them so badly, but that's part of this whole recruiting game," Howland says. "I think that when they got [to North Carolina], they realized how far away from home they were, with all their family and friends out here in California. It was such a different world, 3,000 miles from here."

Dave and Travis second that emotion. "I'd grown up here my whole life, and I thought it would be nice to move away and see how things were on my own. Go from bigger city to smaller city," Travis explains. "But I missed home a lot when I was actually there for a while."

It was culture shock, Dave agrees. "It was completely different, being in the small town of Chapel Hill," he says. "It was a learning experience and a lot of fun, but I'm definitely excited to be back and playing for UCLA, surrounded by friends and family and all the people who supported me. So I definitely have no regrets."

Howland notes that the brothers have dedicated themselves to becoming the best they can be. They attend yoga classes three times a week with their teammates; lift weights four days a week and practice basketball for seven; and, despite Dave's occasional cookie, are extremely serious about nutrition and eating right.

Leave It on the Court

They've easily settled into campus life, and are ready to start playing.

Generally laid-back, the only time the brothers really argue is when they're competing, and their squabbles on the basketball court have served as a source of amusement to their teammates. "If we're on the same team and one of us makes a mistake, we get on each other," Dave says. "Probably more so than any coach or anyone else would, because we just expect so much out of each other."

Travis acknowledges, "Sometimes it can be a distraction to our teammates, because we just get so heated …" "We don't hear anything else," Dave finishes. "We're just focused on ourselves."

The on-court arguing is one of the few things Howland has had to talk to them about. "They're each other's biggest critic," he says, laughing. "They're always getting on each other, but in a good way. That's the one thing I've had to try to correct them on — to be supportive of one another."

Otherwise, the twins are as close as two brothers can be, according to their dad, Dave Sr. "They've been basically joined at the hip forever, and I don't think they'd have it any other way," he says. "If one of them isn't around, the other one always wants to know when the other one is coming back. And as soon as he gets back, it's 'What'd you do? Who'd you see? What happened?' They want a full play-by-play so they can feel like they were there with them. It's a pretty special relationship, that's for sure."

The brothers, both political science majors, are good students and often study together. When they're not working out or shooting hoops, they like to play video games ("Call of Duty" is a favorite) or hang out with their friends. Ferocious competitors on the court, they're nonpartisan in their social lives. Dave's girlfriend, Christina Marinacci, plays on USC's women's basketball team, while Travis' girlfriend, Kendall Bullock, is a Trojan song girl. Not that there isn't good-natured "rivalry" teasing between the brothers and their girlfriends, but it's all in fun.

Twice as Nice

The arrival of twins was completely unexpected for Dave Sr., 6'9" and a former basketball player, and his wife, Gloria, who is 5'9". The couple knew they would have big kids, but when Gloria became pregnant, she couldn't understand why she was so extraordinarily huge at only two months.

"Two of my girlfriends were pregnant at the same time as me. They were barely showing, and I looked like I was about five months pregnant," Gloria says. "I would go to my check-ups and look at my ultrasounds and my friends would look at theirs. They could see an outline of a baby, and mine was always a mess!"

About a month before her due date, Gloria wasn't feeling well. Since her regular doctor was on vacation, Gloria saw his partner, who grew concerned when he saw that she had grown two inches in the last week. He ordered another ultrasound.

"He said, 'OK, here's the head on the left and here's the head on the right,' " Gloria recalls. "And I said, 'What? My baby has two heads?' And the doctor said, 'Well, there are two bodies to go with those heads.' And I had them three days later."

The Wear boys naturally gravitated to sports and played several, including baseball, soccer, roller hockey and ice hockey. In fact, before they were hoops heroes they excelled at roller hockey, playing on the North American national championship team for the 10-and-Unders. Once they started growing, however — they hit 6'3" in the 7th grade — the twosome began to concentrate exclusively on basketball.

Prep-school Prodigies

After a few years of playing in the National Junior Basketball league and in the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU), the Wears entered the prestigious basketball program at Mater Dei High School, run by Coach Gary McKnight. Dave and Travis played on McKnight's teams from 2006-2009, garnering an incredible record of 132 wins and 10 losses.

"They won a CIF championship in 2006 and two state championships in 2007 and 2008," McKnight remembers proudly. "David was two-time CIF Player of the Year, and both David and Travis were first-team All-CIF, All-County, All-League. They were co-MVPs of [Orange County's Trinity League]."

In fact, Dave and Travis are just two of five Mater Dei alumni on the UCLA team, along with Tyler Lamb, Blake Arnet and David Brown. And the twins still see their high school coach often, dropping in at Mater Dei and speaking to the elementary and middle school boys at McKnight's summer basketball camps.

When the Wears played for him, McKnight recalls how they would fool him at practice by switching jerseys. "I couldn't tell them apart," the high school coach says. "I had to put numbers on both sides of the jerseys, because if they were facing me and the numbers were on the back, I couldn't tell who was who. I'd yell 'David!' at one of them, and he wouldn't give me a response. Finally, he'd say, 'I'm Travis. That's David.' They would just mess with me all the time."

Home Again

UCLA senior point guard Lazeric "Zeek" Jones, a transfer student from John A. Logan College in Carterville, Ill., arrived at the Westwood campus in summer 2010 along with the twins. But because he wasn't from the West Coast, Jones was one of the few players on the Bruin team who hadn't already met or played with the Wears. He had definitely heard of them, though.

Travis (left) and Dave reach new heights (even for them).

"They were way cooler than I thought they'd be," Jones says, laughing. "They're real laid-back guys. They have a really good sense of humor, too." After a couple of weeks, Jones says, the brothers didn't even look alike to him anymore, and the differences in their personalities became evident: Trav, he says, can be more silly, while Dave is the serious one.

But when it comes to basketball, Jones says, both Wears mean business. "They can do pretty much everything I can do," the 6'1" point guard says. "They can shoot, they can dribble, they can pass. They're smart players and they're really aggressive. And if it comes down to it, they can go on the post with the big guys — like Reeves and Josh — and they can score."

With the Wears around, the team's practices can get pretty lively, Jones says. "They mess with me a lot! During practice, Coach will say, 'Zeek, don't worry about the twins!' because they'll be on the sidelines, barking at me. I can't miss a shot; I can't make a turnover because they're in my ear, trying to get into my head," he says, laughing ruefully.

"I do the same to them and make sure whenever they make a mistake, I'm on them. It's all good-natured — right afterward, we're smiling and hugging. And it's definitely made me better," Jones admits. "But I'm working hard to make sure I don't make a mistake, because I know as soon as I mess up, they're right there, in my ear. I have to turn around and see both of them!"

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

NBA AM: Who’s Playing in Las Vegas? Malcolm Lee is.

Some choice cuts from Alex Kennedy's post on HOOPSWORLD. To read the whole thing, click here.

NBA AM: Who’s Playing in Las Vegas?

By Alex Kennedy
Updated: September 7, 2011, 6:49 am ET

Impact Basketball is working out the final details for their two-week competitive training series, which means NBA stars are beginning to flock to Las Vegas. The league’s rosters won’t be released until Thursday, but over 50 players have already committed to play in next week’s games.

John Wall, Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph, Stephen Curry, Kyle Lowry, Stephen Jackson, Chauncey Billups, DeMar DeRozan, Tayshaun Prince, Al Harrington, Jermaine O’Neal, DeAndre Jordan, Mo Williams, J.J. Hickson, Austin Daye, Jared Dudley, Marreese Speights, Dahntay Jones, Courtney Lee, Chase Budinger, Omri Casspi, Eric Maynor, C.J. Watson, Ryan Gomes, James Anderson, Avery Bradley, Melvin Ely, Armon Johnson and Shawne Williams are among the players that are expected to participate.

The Impact CTS will also feature a number of rookies including Iman Shumpert, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, Jordan Williams, Malcolm Lee, Josh Selby, Trey Thompkins, Travis Leslie and Shelvin Mack.

With no summer league or offseason workouts, these first-year players will use the two weeks to build chemistry with their new teammates and adjust to the NBA’s style of play.

Several former NBA players will also compete including Jamaal Tinsley, Bonzi Wells and Damon Jones.

Blake Griffin remains a possibility, but he may not be able to play for the entire two-week period due to his busy schedule. If the lockout continues and September’s series is a success, Impact will hold another two-week session during the month of October, which Griffin would participate in.

The list is subject to change and other players will be added throughout the course of this week. Impact is hoping to have 64 participants so that the eight teams will feature eight players. Some players – such as Leonard – won’t be able to stay for both weeks so having extra bodies to take their place is important.

The games will be streamed online for free and they will also be open to the public. Five hundred tickets will be sold each day and the proceeds will go to charity. Nike has designed jerseys for each of the eight teams and other sponsorships are being discussed. Statistics, standings and more information will be updated on Impact Basketball’s website.

Unlike many other summer leagues, the Impact CTS won’t resemble streetball. Organizers are encouraging players to treat these games as if they were part of the NBA’s regular season. There will be an emphasis on defense and NBA rules will be enforced by referees.

This is the closest thing to the NBA that basketball fans will be able to watch for quite some time. As the NBA’s players and owners continue to meet and iron out a new collective bargaining agreement, the Impact CTS will provide you with a basketball fix.

News and Notes: Here are some items from this week’s news and notes bin.

• Jimmer Fredette is organizing two rookie exhibition games with all proceeds going to his charity. The games will be played in Salt Lake City (9/21) and Provo (9/22) and will feature Kemba Walker, Kawhi Leonard, Chris Singleton, Nolan Smith, Malcolm Lee and Isaiah Thomas among other players.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The NBA's worst-kept secret: UCLA

The NBA's worst-kept secret: UCLA

By Steve Ritea
UCLA Today
Aug 30, 2011

Lakers forward Ron Artest (center), who's petitioned to change his name to Metta World Peace, plays a pick-up game at the Student Activities Center, a favorite, low-key place to practice for dozens of all-stars during the off-season and current NBA lockout.

It’s a poorly-kept secret just about everyone in the NBA knows: If you’re looking for a casual, off-season pick-up game, there’s only one place to go — UCLA.

On any given weekday afternoon, dozens of professional basketball players can be spotted wandering past Ackerman Union and the Bruin statue, and disappearing into the Student Activities Center (SAC) for an informal, all-star game that most fans can only dream about seeing.

On a recent Thursday, the sneakers squeaking on the floors of the second-floor gym belonged to Ron Artest of the L.A. Lakers, Andre Miller of the Denver Nuggets and Elton Brand of the Philadelphia 76ers … to name just a few.

Bruin players were out on the floor, too — shooting, dribbling and guarding them in pick-up games that have become a decades-old tradition at UCLA, stemming largely from its reputation as a basketball powerhouse.

This year, in fact, UCLA will have more alumni in the NBA than any other university, Bruins Assistant Coach Scott Garson said. "There’s no better pick-up game anywhere in the country," he said of the unannounced games.

Philadelphia 76ers forward Elton Brand, formerly of the L.A. Clippers, aims for the basket.

At the former Men's Gym basketball courts, hoops history is all around them — even Coach John Wooden’s original chalkboard as well as the very gym floor where he trained Kareem Abdul-Jabbar back when the towering player was still Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor Jr. In fact, the courts, located on the second floor of SAC, used to be where the Bruins played before crowded bleachers until Pauley Pavilion became their home court.

Today, only a few spectators watch from the sidelines.

But Brand said there’s something very raw and appealing about getting to play away from the crowds and the ever-present cameras. "It’s a great, pure feeling," he said. "You’re just playing for the love of the sport. … There’s not even anyone to tape knees."

That also makes for amazing basketball moments never captured on camera, left only to linger in the minds of those who played that day.

"Yesterday Russell Westbrook did some amazing dunks against really aggressive defense," Artest said after a recent pick-up game, sweat still dripping from his brow. "There’s not many games like UCLA in any other city."

The games also function as an informal way to study up on your opponents’ moves. Miller said he might step into an NBA game and suddenly recognize someone with whom he played months earlier back at UCLA. "You pick up on other guys’ habits," he said.

Those "other guys" might soon include Bruins' Point Guard Lazeric Jones — a talented player with his sights set on the NBA. For guys like Jones, playing against the pros at SAC was intimidating at first, but it turned out to be an invaluable experience that’s preparing him for the next step in his career.

While the rules are few at SAC, there is one that the pros take to heart. At least one student has to be included in every game.

"This is one of the reasons I came here," Jones said. "This is a legendary place. … I’ve talked to Baron Davis and Earl Watson, and they’ve taught me a lot."

Including Bruin players in their pick-up games is actually one of the few rules at SAC. At least one student player has to be included in every game, said Mitchell Butler, a former Bruin who went on to play for the former Washington Bullets. On good days, there are up to three games going on simultaneously.

"We were all young pups, and the older players would share their knowledge with us, and we turned around and shared it with Baron Davis and others," Butler said. "Today, Baron’s helping young Bruins like Reeves Nelson."

With the NBA lockout delaying preparations for any upcoming season, the pick-up games, which would normally be over by now, are now likely to extend into early September.