UCLA announces December game against Kentucky at United Center

UCLA officially announced that it will play Kentucky at Chicago’s United Center on Dec. 20, setting up a marquee matchup against John Calipari’s national runner-up Wildcats.

Part of the CBS Sports Classic, the game will tip off at approximately 12:30 p.m. PT and be broadcast on — naturally — CBS. The event was first reported by the Columbus Dispatch in March.

Also part of the rotating doubleheader are North Carolina and Ohio State, who will play at 10 a.m. PT. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Report: Ben Howland a serious candidate for Oregon State head coach opening

After being fired by UCLA a year ago, Ben Howland may be employed again soon.

Multiple reports indicate that the architect of the Bruins’ three straight Final Fours is Oregon State’s top target after firing Craig Robinson.

Should Howland become the replacement, he would inherit arguably the toughest job in the Pac-12. A spot that was already unattractive when Robinson arrived in 2008 has not gotten any prettier. In the last six years, the Beavers never finished above .500 overall and only once placed higher than eighth in the conference. The program has not reached the NCAA Tournament since 1990.

Athletic director Bob De Carolis said at a press conference this week that despite affirming Robinson’s status in March, he changed his mind after taking off “orange-colored glasses.” That may not have been the only impetus. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Kyle Anderson named UCLA’s most valuable player at team banquet

This was a no-brainer.

After leading UCLA to its first Sweet Sixteen since 2008, point guard Kyle Anderson was named the team’s MVP during Monday night’s year-end banquet at the Beverly Hilton. After averaging 14.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.5 assists — leading the Bruins in the latter two — the third-team AP All-American is headed to the NBA along with former teammates Jordan Adams and Zach LaVine.

Adams, who led UCLA with 17.4 points per game, won the J.D. Morgan Memorial Award for outstanding “team” player. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

UCLA’s Jordan Adams changes decision, declares for NBA draft

Nine days after announcing his decision to stay at UCLA, leading scorer Jordan Adams will declare for the NBA draft.

A UCLA spokesperson confirmed the news late Saturday night. Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski first broke the story.

Adams’ departure robs the Bruins of their top returning player, one that averaged 17.4 points and set a school-record 95 steals. After reaching the Sweet Sixteen in the first year under head coach Steve Alford, and for the first time since 2008, UCLA will return a roster that looks almost entirely different. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

UCLA to play home-and-home basketball series with Gonzaga

Gonzaga will visit Pauley Pavilion this winter, beefing up what should be a much more impressive nonconference schedule for UCLA basketball.

Zags athletic director Mike Roth told the Gonzaga Bulletin that the game will be a part of a home-and-home series with UCLA, with the Bruins visiting Spokane in 2015-16.

The Bulldogs finished 29-7 this past season, losing to Arizona in the round of 32. They will have four-star point guard Josh Perkins, whom UCLA missed on last summer, as well as Kentucky transfer Kyle Wiltjer.

Bruins head coach Steve Alford has said often that he wants to schedule more marquee games, and also secured one against title-game finalist Kentucky this December at the United Center in Chicago. In his first season, Alford faced a nonconference schedule that included only two top-50 RPI teams: Missouri and Duke, the latter squeezed in as a last-minute addition.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Leading scorer Jordan Adams to return to UCLA for junior season

Leading scorer Jordan Adams will return for his junior season at UCLA, a source confirmed. ESPN first reported the news.

The Pac-12′s seventh-leading scorer was mulling an entry into the NBA draft, and filed paperwork to receive feedback on his status. Point guard Kyle Anderson, a third-team AP All-American, and reserve guard Zach LaVine had already declared their intentions to go pro.

As a sophomore, Adams led the Bruins with 17.4 points per game, and set a new school record with 95 steals. The 6-foot-5 wing’s return is the most significant offseason news for a team that is coming off its first Sweet Sixteen since 2008. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Four-star forward Jonah Bolden signs with UCLA

Four-star forward Jonah Bolden signed a national letter of intent with UCLA on Wednesday, officially giving the Bruins the fourth commitment in their 2014 class.

The versatile 6-foot-9 Australian verbally committed in December, and will fill out a frontcourt that should improve despite the graduation of David and Travis Wear. Bolden spent the fall semester at Las Vegas Findlay Prep, then led Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.) to the National Prep Championship.

“We are thrilled to add a player of Jonah’s caliber to our program,” head coach Steve Alford said in a statement. “Not only is he a talented young man, but he’s also very coachable, has great character and will immediately add to our team’s depth.

He joins a haul that already includes five-star forward Kevon Looney, four-star center Thomas Welsh and three-star forward Gyorgy Goloman — all of whom inked their letters during the November signing period. UCLA’s class is ranked seventh in the country by Scout.com.

The second NLI signing period started today, and ends on May 21.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Kyle Anderson, Zach LaVine officially declare for the NBA draft

Guards Kyle Anderson and Zach LaVine have officially declared for the NBA draft, UCLA announced today.

Anderson’s father, Kyle Sr., told numerous outlets at various points in before, during and after the Bruins’ Sweet Sixteen run that his son was bound for the pros after his sophomore season. LaVine’s decision was reported last month.

“My two years at UCLA were two of the best years of my life,” Anderson said in a statement. “It was a tough decision to make with my family since our last game, but I have decided to enter my name into the NBA Draft. I will still continue to embrace the UCLA community, and I hope they will do the same with me.”

The school did not release any information regarding leading scorer Jordan Adams, who led the team with 17.4 points last season. The 6-foot-5 wing is still considering going pro, and has until the NBA early entry deadline on April 27 to make a decision. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Report: Jordan Adams, Norman Powell file paperwork for NBA draft status

According to the Los Angeles Times, both Jordan Adams and Norman Powell have filed paperwork for NBA draft evaluations.

However, a source told me Powell will return to UCLA, though Adams is still undecided. The NBA draft early entry deadline is April 27.

Adams led the team in scoring last season with 17.4 points per game, and set a new school record with 95 steals. Bruin 247′s Neal Nieves first reported last month that Adams was exploring the possibility of going pro.

Powell was the Bruins’ best man-to-man defender, and ranked third on the roster with 11.4 points per game. The junior had a breakout year in Steve Alford’s transition offense, averaging 14.2 points on 53.8 percent shooting.

UCLA is already losing to the draft one of the most versatile players in the country in All-American point guard Kyle Anderson, as well as reserve guard Zach LaVine.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email

Report: Former UCLA player Tyler Honeycutt received pay, agent alleges

A former sports agent alleges that he paid former UCLA player Tyler Honeycutt with the hopes of signing him.

Noah Lookofsky told SB Nation that he began paying Honeycutt and his mother Lisa Stazel while the 6-foot-9 forward was preparing to enter his senior season at Sylmar High — eventually spending $55,800 on a player that eventually spurned him before becoming a second-round NBA draft pick.

Lookofsky provided SB Nation with documents and emails to support claims of payments for apartment rentals, flights, and the purchase of a Dodge Magnum. The relationship extended to spring of 2011, and potentially make Honeycutt ineligible for his entire UCLA career. Continue reading

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email