UCLA links: Making UCLA men’s basketball fun again?

Incoming freshman Lonzo Ball will make an immediate impact on UCLA men's basketball. (Will Lester/Inland Valley Daily Bulletin)

Incoming freshman Lonzo Ball will make an immediate impact on UCLA men’s basketball. (Will Lester/Inland Valley Daily Bulletin)

ESPN calls UCLA commit and incoming freshman Lonzo Ball “the first player of a new age” in college basketball. But Eamonn Brennan also wonders if the dynamic Chino Hills point guard with range out to the parking lot can inject some fun into UCLA men’s basketball this season.

Perhaps the more important question is if head coach Steve Alford will let Ball bring some fun back. As explained in this great story from The Ringer (which I have shared previously), Ball is a product of an unorthodox basketball upbringing, brought up under his father LaVar’s unique system of “the only bad shot is the one you don’t practice.” We’ll see how much Alford buys into that way of playing.

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UCLA at NFL minicamps

Linebacker Myles Jack had a tough introduction to the heat and humidity in Florida where he made the rookie mistake of coming to practice wearing a long-sleeved shirt. He soon ditched the sleeves.

The Jaguars website has a video practice report on Jack.


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Kevin Love, in fact, not snubbed for high five by LeBron James

Former UCLA basketball player Kevin Love struggled in Cleveland’s season-saving Game 5 win on Monday against Golden State, which left him as the butt of internet jokes. Most notably, there was a Vine that showed LeBron James apparently leaving Love hanging for a high five.

However, the situation wasn’t what it appeared. In an extended clip, it shows James and Love simply having a discussion.

James and Kyrie Irving carried the Cavs to a Game 5 win while Love had only two points and three rebounds in 33 minutes. Cleveland still trails 3-2 with Game 6 on Thursday.

No matter the team that wins the NBA Finals, a Bruin will become a champion. Kevon Looney, who played one season for UCLA, plays for the Warriors, but he has only appeared in five games, averaging 1.8 points and two rebounds.  

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UCLA links: Alumna Lauren Fendrick heading to Rio Olympics

Lauren Fendrick will be making her first appearance in an Olympic Games. (Photo courtesy USA Volleyball)

Lauren Fendrick will be making her first appearance in an Olympic Games. (Photo courtesy USA Volleyball)

UCLA volleyball alumna Lauren Fendrick will make her Olympic debut this summer as the former Bruin indoor volleyball player qualified with Brooke Sweat for the beach volleyball competition with Team USA.

“Competing with USA on my back is always an honor, but to do it at the Olympics on the biggest stage and in a city with such a rich beach volleyball tradition is truly a dream come true,” Fendrick told USA Volleyball. “I feel honored and privileged to get to compete for my country.”

The duo is one of two U.S. women’s teams heading to Rio: Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross going as the top U.S. team.

Fendrick played in 127 matches for the UCLA women’s indoor volleyball team from 1999 to 2002 and is 18th in program history in kills (1,356) and ninth in total attacks (3,710). She led the Bruins in kills her last two seasons and was a three-time All-Pac-12 honorable mention. She made the jump to the beach immediately after her collegiate career.


Other links:

  • UCLA coaches were on out at the Empire Showcase satellite camp this past weekend in Railto.

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