Jalen Hill, newest UCLA commitment, 6-foot-8 at just 15

Jalen Hill, a five-star center who committed on Sunday to UCLA, could look significantly different when he arrives on campus in 2017.

The Corona Centennial junior-to-be turned 15 in December. He could easily be a 2018 prospect based on his age alone. Hill is touted as a defensive center, but his offensive game is developing as rapidly as his 6-foot-8 body, according to his high school coach, who noted that Hill’s father is 6-9 and his mother is “at least 6-3.”

“Most kids who are this tall this young can’t chew gum and walk, but Jalen is one of the fastest, most agile players on our team,” Centennial basketball coach Josh Giles said. “A year ago, sure, he was more of a defensive guy, but he’s increased his range and he is a much better outside shooter. He’s got much more to his game than just defense.”

Giles thought enough of Hill’s perimeter skills to call the scout.com five-star prospect a stretch-4. Hill’s offensive development was on display earlier this month when he set a record for the 16U USA Basketball team on its way to a gold medal at the FIBA Americas Championship. He connected on 88 percent (15 of 17) of his field goal attempts in the tournament’s five games, breaking Jahlil Okafor’s 2011 mark of 71 percent shooting.

It has been an unexpectedly eventful summer for Hill, who wasn’t anticipated to issue a commitment this early. His decision boiled down to UCLA and Arizona, according to Giles. Continue reading

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Asiantii Woulard picks USF after transferring out of UCLA

Former UCLA quarterback Asiantii Woulard has decided to transfer to South Florida — the school he first committed to as a four-star recruit.

Once named the Elite 11 Camp MVP, Woulard never appeared in a game as a Bruin. After a promising fall camp in 2013, he fell to third-string on the depth chart behind Brett Hundley. He has yet to appear in a college game.

Woulard first committed to USF in February 2012, then decommitted two months later. He changed his mind again in June — then parted ways with the Bulls in December before signing with UCLA.

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UCLA schedules home game against Fresno State in 2021

UCLA has scheduled a game against Fresno State in 2021, the schools announced Monday.

The Bulldogs will travel to the Rose Bowl on Sept. 18, the only contest scheduled in the contract. The Bruins start that season by hosting LSU and visiting Rutgers.

UCLA just one spot left open in their nonceference schedule through the next seven seasons.

2016
Sept. 3 — at Texas A&M
Sept. 10 — UNLV
Sept. 17 — at BYU

2017
Sept. 2 — Texas A&M
Sept. 9 — Hawai’i
Sept. 16 — at Memphis

2018
Sept. 1 — Cincinnati
Sept. 8 — at Oklahoma
Sept. 15 — Fresno State Continue reading

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Five-star center Jalen Hill commits to UCLA’s 2017 class

UCLA has landed a commitment from another big man out of Corona Centenniel.

Two months after center Ike Anigbogu announced his decision to join the Bruins’ 2016 class, his high school teammate Jalen Hill has done the same for the 2017 cycle. Hill is ranked a five-star center and a top-25 national recruit by Scout.com, and a four-star power forward by Rivals.com.

He was picked for the USA Basketball U16 team earlier this month.

The 6-foot-8, 205-pound Hill is the second member of UCLA’s 2017 class, joining three-star shooting guard LiAngelo Ball.

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UCLA assistant TJ Bruce leaves to coach Nevada baseball

UCLA baseball assistant TJ Bruce has taken the head job at Nevada, becoming the latest member of John Savage’s growing coaching tree.

Bruce, who turned 33 in March, always seemed bound for a bigger opportunity. He had served as the Bruins’ infield coach for the past five years, as well as his hitting assistant. But one of his primary duties was recruiting coordinator, where he helped the program reel in three top-10 classes.

After UCLA won its first College World Series title in 2013, I asked Bruce what he had planned as a celebration. He was set to hit the recruiting trail the next day. Continue reading

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