UCLA’s Kris Wilkes one of 28 vying for USA basketball roster spot

Kris Wilkes is doing a fine job building anticipation for his debut with the UCLA basketball team.

The most decorated member of Steve Alford’s 2017 recruiting class, which is ranked No. 2 in the country, has already worn a McDonald’s All-American jersey. He’ll don a USA Basketball one in a few weeks.

The incoming freshman small forward was among 28 players invited to Team USA’s U19 World Championship Team training camp June 18-25 at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The first roster cut-down will happen after two days and the 12-member team will be determined by June 22. The final roster coached by Kentucky’s John Calipari will attempt to win a third consecutive gold medal during the FIBA U19 World Championships in Cairo, Egypt July 1-9.

UCLA rising senior Thomas Welsh was a member of the 2015 gold medal-winning team. This year’s roster will feature three of Calipari’s Kentucky players along with a couple familiar faces from the Pac-12, Continue reading “UCLA’s Kris Wilkes one of 28 vying for USA basketball roster spot” »

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Lonzo Ball works out for Lakers, sits down with team brass

Lonzo Ball at the LA Lakers training facility in El Segundo where he went through a workout and spoke to reporters afterward. (Photo by Brad Graverson/SCNG)

Lonzo Ball’s long-awaited workout for the Lakers wasn’t limited to the basketball court on Wednesday. Tuesday night, the former UCLA point guard had dinner with Lakers coach Luke Walton, GM Rob Pelinka and President of Basketball Operations Magic Johnson.

After his 75-minute workout at the Lakers practice facility – followed by an interesting session with the media – Ball was whisked off to a lunch date with Lakers owners Jeanie, Joey and Jesse Buss.

Ball’s private workout included “typical stuff” on the court, but he had a few eyebrow-raising things to say afterward. As for his infamous father, LaVar, Lonzo said he was ensured at dinner that Lakers brass is far from worried.

“They said they love him,” Lonzo said. “That’s about it.”

LaVar Ball wasn’t present at the workout or at dinner Tuesday night in Venice. Neither were any of the current Lakers players.

READ: Lonzo Ball downplays criticism of LaVar, highlights leadership qualities 

Perhaps the most interesting thing Ball had to say indirectly referenced D’Angelo Russell, the team’s current point guard. Continue reading “Lonzo Ball works out for Lakers, sits down with team brass” »

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UCLA loses commitment from safety Jhevon Hill

UCLA lost its longest-committed player for the 2018 recruiting class Wednesday as Jhevon Hill backed out of his verbal pledge to the Bruins.

When the three-star safety from Cajon High in San Bernardino committed to UCLA on March 8, he wrote on Twitter that UCLA was his “childhood ream school.” However, he has since pulled in offers from Arizona and Arizona State. He also has Pac-12 offers from Utah, Cal and Washington State.

The Bruins have two safeties for their 2018 class and both are four-star prospects: Stephan Blaylock (St. John Bosco) and Cam’ron Jones (Mansfield High in Texas). UCLA didn’t sign any safeties in its deep 2017 defensive back group.

UCLA’s nine remaining commits:

  • ATH Isaiah Johnson
  • DL Aaron Maldonado
  • OL Blake McDonald
  • S Cam’ron Jones
  • WR Kyle Phillips
  • RB AJ Carter
  • QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson
  • S Stephan Blaylock
  • DL Niti Liu
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UCLA lands commitment from 3-star defensive lineman

UCLA landed its second defensive lineman for it’s 2018 recruiting class on Tuesday as three-star defensive tackle Niti Liu announced his verbal commitment to the Bruins on Twitter.

The 6-foot-3, 310-pound prospect from Sacramento’s Grant Union High is the No. 10-ranked defensive tackle in the West and No. 6 in California, according to Scout.com.

He also had offers from Arizona, Colorado State and Fresno State. UCLA was the first school to offer him.

Bishop Amat’s Aaron Maldonado is UCLA’s other defensive line commit for the 2018 class. Liu brings UCLA’s group to 10:

Other UCLA verbal commits: Continue reading “UCLA lands commitment from 3-star defensive lineman” »

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UCLA scheduled to take podium on first day of Pac-12 Media Days

UCLA head coach Jim Mora speaks to reporters during NCAA college Pac-12 Football Media Days, Thursday, July 30, 2015, in Burbank, Calif. (Mark J. Terrill/AP)

The Pac-12 released its schedule for next month’s Pac-12 Media Days and it has UCLA set to take the main stage at 10:20 a.m. on Wednesday, July 26 at Hollywood and Highland.

Head coach Jim Mora and two to-be-announced players will represent the Bruins during the two-day event.

UCLA hasn’t released its summer training camp schedule yet, but it should be starting very close to the Media Days as the end of two-a-day practices meant adding an extra week to training camp. The Bruins started camp in the second week of August last year.

Here’s the full Media Days schedule:
Continue reading “UCLA scheduled to take podium on first day of Pac-12 Media Days” »

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