Sunday, April 27, 2008

Bruin Recruiting: Prep News Roundup (4/28)

By Bruin Basketball Report

Prep News Roundup is published every Monday.


Malcolm Lee (Blue) -- The UCLA commit made a new fan this weekend. After being arguably the best player on the court (other than Brandon Jennings) in the scrimmage, Lee made the most of his time on the court. He only played 18 minutes, though he showed his coach's son approach by shooting accurately and in appropriate situations, and by taking care of the ball. He had seven points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals, and no turnovers. Lee has all of the tools to become a bigtime NCAA player and NBA prospect. 4/22

Jrue Holiday (Blue) -- The highly regarded West Coast guard had a disappointing weekend. After a fairly quiet scrimmage, he shot one-of-nine from the field and have more turnovers than points (six and five, respectively). Holiday's game may not be best-suited for the all-star game setting due to his team-first attitude. Regardless, he's one of the most polished and skilled players heading into college next season. 4/22

Mullens now on top of the 2008 Rivals150: Mullens bumped Georgetown-bound Greg Monroe from the No. 1 spot. Monroe slipped a bit in the rankings, but remains in the top 10. The latest ranking is very guard-heavy at the top. After Mullens, Jrue Holiday, Demar Derozan, Brandon Jennings (all Pac-10 bound prospects), Scotty Hopson and Tyreke Evans were close behind. GatorBait 4/22

Howland, when reached by phone, was pleased to hear of Jrue Holiday and Malcolm Lee's willingness to play D. It was, he said, as if they were getting a head-start on Bruin-ball. "If they're able to come in and play good defense," Howland said, "it increases their possibility of being significant players right away -- which they're probably going to have to be." The best-case scenario for UCLA would be that one of its two current backcourt stars, Westbrook or Collison, returns to mentor the rookies, and Mbah a Moute comes back to anchor the frontcourt. A starting lineup of Westbrook and Holiday at guard, Josh Shipp and Mbah a Moute at forward, and either James Keefe or Drew Gordon in the low-post might be good enough to get the Bruins to their fourth straight Final Four. Sports Illustrated 4/24

Campbell Hall’s Jrue Holiday played his final high school basketball game in New York City on April 19, when he participated in the seventh annual Nike Jordan Brand Classic All-Star game. It was his third major prep showcase game since completing his storied basketball career as a Viking. He also played in the McDonald’s All-American game and the Nike Hoop Summit in the past month. Holiday was selected to play on the Blue Team. Holiday, who played for the victorious Blue Team, only played 19 minutes and was a non-factor on offense. He had five points, three assists, six turnovers and was 1-for-9 from the field. Sun Community 4/25

Bay Area Meet of Champions - Shot put - Colin Quirke (Los Gatos) 59-4 1/2, David Spates (Monte Vista-Danville) 58-7, Drew Gordon (Mitty) 56-10. State: Quirke (Los Gatos) 59-4 1/2. SF Chronicle

If Kyle Caldwell decided to exercise the option he’s been given to walk on to the UCLA basketball team, he’d be relieved to be playing with Jerime Anderson, not against him. The Newport Harbor High senior, who already has a volleyball scholarship from the Bruins, was facing the Canyon standout Saturday night at Ocean View High, where they were playing on opposite teams in the 43rd annual Kiwanis/PlyoCity Orange County All-Star game. Caldwell had 11 points and eight rebounds for the South, which lost to Anderson’s North squad, 124-105. Even though the All-Star game was tantamount to an exhibition, Caldwell said Anderson — who finished with 35 points — brought the same skills that led to Canyon’s 72-48 victory over Newport Harbor in the December Irvine World News tournament. “He’s full-bore all the time,” Caldwell said. “He’s a good player. He gives it all he can.” But seeing Caldwell in Bruins basketball shorts is a long shot at best. The men’s volleyball and basketball seasons overlap, and Caldwell is one of the hottest volleyball players in the nation. Either way, Caldwell and Anderson will be sharing a school, if not a team. Daily Pilot 4/27


The big man who replaces Kevin Love at UCLA apparently will not be LSU signee J'Mison Morgan. The 6-foot-11center from Dallas South Oak Cliff High met with LSU coach Trent Johnson on Tuesday and has decided to honor his letter of intent, according to his high school coach James Mays. Johnson's keeping former LSU interim coach Butch Pierre as an assistant was a big factor in Morgan's decision because Pierre recruited the senior to Baton Rouge. The former Stanford coach also emphasized his track record developing big men, assuring Morgan that he will be a focal point of the Tigers offense next season.Press Enterprise 4/22

There’s a lot of work to do on the recruiting trail in the next few weeks for new LSU men’s basketball coach Trent Johnson. But Johnson made a huge statement this week by apparently closing the book for good on the 2008 class. J’Mison Morgan, the centerpiece of the Tigers’ 2008 recruiting haul, will honor his commitment to LSU. Johnson and James Mays, Morgan’s coach at South Oak Cliff in Dallas, confirmed Thursday that the 6-foot-10, 275-pound Morgan plans on enrolling at LSU and playing for the Tigers. Morgan met with Johnson and Tigers associate head coach Butch Pierre in person in Dallas on Tuesday. That meeting convinced the big Texan that LSU is still the right place for him. “He’s a very, very good basketball player who fits well in the system we’re going to implement,” Johnson said2theadvocate 4/23

Oodles of schools have offers to Jordan Hamiliton. Here's the updated short list: Connecticut, Kansas, Syracuse, Texas and USC. Man, I hope this kid stays local and ends up with the Trojans. I'd love to watch him for another few years. By the way, ranks Hamilton as the No. 2 small forward and No. 8 player overall in the nation. In my opinion, Hamilton is a little underrated. I saw him play three times this past season, and I believe he's snipped from the same fabric as Compton's DeMar DeRozan and Campbell Hall's Jrue Holiday. LA Times 4/24

KU apparently is out of the running for Ater Majok, a 6-10 forward (in the Class of 2008) from Sudan, who is on UConn’s campus for an unofficial visit. Majok told he is considering UConn, UCLA, Baylor and Kentucky. Lawrence Journal World 4/25

Stephan Van Treese, a 6-9, 225-pound junior from Indianapolis, tells Rivals he has a final six of KU, Indiana, Louisville, UCLA, Ohio State and Florida. Van Treese, the No. 52-rated player in the Class of ’09, will compete at the ninth-annual Jayhawk Invitational, which starts May 2 at Allen Fieldhouse and Horejsi Center. Lawrence Journal World 4/25

But in a brief conversation with the Citizen-Times, the father did confirm that Christ School senior Miles Plumlee, a 6-foot-10 forward from Indiana, has asked for a release from the national letter-of-intent he signed with Stanford in November. Miles Plumlee was unavailable for comment. “I don’t want to get into the particulars of the situation, but it has changed dramatically,” Perky Plumlee said. “Now we’re just waiting on Stanford to do the honorable thing. And I know Miles just wants some closure to this situation. He’s not the type of kid who likes a lot of attention.” Greenies coach David Gaines said the Plumlee family became increasingly disenchanted with the lack of communication from Stanford since former coach Trent Johnson left for LSU earlier this month. Citizen-Times 4/27

(photo credit: Chris Williams/Icon SMI)



At Apr 27, 2008, 11:05:00 PM, Anonymous Bruinfan 2005 said...

BRR any word on Ater Majok?
Thabeet's decision to stay at UCONN has got to be huge for us right? Ater Majok could be the center piece of the front line it true that he has not visited westwood?

At Apr 28, 2008, 1:33:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Report said...

Its our understanding he has not visited the UCLA campus. Majok had once said that he'd like to visit Westwood but whether he makes it more of a priority now is unknown.
He was definitely a UConn lean before and may still be despite Thabeet staying.

At Apr 28, 2008, 4:52:00 AM, Anonymous JonW said...

Drew Gordon is also a shot putter? Wow. I've heard of track/bball guys but they are usually sprinter, high jumpers (i.e. Ryan Hollins). T

At Apr 28, 2008, 6:14:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin said...

Just got back from Vegas last night. A high ranking official there told me that Morgan has announced that he is re-opening his recruitment. Nothing offical yet but this is supposedly from
Morgan, rather than from his high school coach.

At Apr 28, 2008, 6:37:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somebody, please tell me why UCLA is having such a hard time landing a decent BIG? Back to back to back Final Fours, we should be having BIG's lining up at our door. Also, the number of players Howland has put into the NBA is also quite telling. So what's the issue? Especially when they are guaranteed tons of playing time. WHAT'S THE DEAL????

At Apr 28, 2008, 6:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to, Ater Majok gave a verbal to UCONN. Another BIG bites the dust!

At Apr 28, 2008, 7:26:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

What about Plumlee BBR. Any chance he could take a detour from Palo Alto by way of Westwood?

At Apr 28, 2008, 8:35:00 AM, Anonymous jake said...

Lack of Bigs ?
I suppose just timing and perhaps a regional thing. Ohio State gets first pick for 7' Centers - that goes without saying - then we scramble for the rest of them. The big blow (it seems) was not landing the Wears - a pair that Howland coveted for a long time - but NC nabbed out of our backyards.

At Apr 28, 2008, 8:48:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Wears should make a fine addition to the Tar Heels bench for the next 4 years.

At Apr 28, 2008, 11:44:00 AM, Anonymous Bruinfan 2005 said...

Response to I:
The reason we dont have any bigs is a big named KLove. What big boy would want to commit without any idea whether he would be playing? Nelson will be good in 2...

At Apr 28, 2008, 12:11:00 PM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Report said...

Possibly but unlikely. Doubt Stanford would allow Plumlee go to another Pac-10 school. Also, he has a lot of interest from other top schools, but academics is a high priority for him. Stay tuned.

At Apr 28, 2008, 4:14:00 PM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Bruin Fans, this is BruinFan...I preach
patience over the BIGS coming in....patience is a virtue...
BBR wrote stay tuned....
I'm a Brentwood local, had season tix my senior year when they won the title.
I had season tix this year because I moved back to my roots, they made the Final Four...."stay tuned"....listen to BBR, he has something up his sleeve...
Don't ever doubt Howland....if he recruits these guards who are studs, plus Gordon, I guarantee over the next 2 months he will announce some Cameroonian, Nigerian, BEAST, joining the UCLA Dynasty (we must win a title first to recruit across the nation)
Love, I thank u for what u did. Too bad, we never got to know you. You are always welcome back. I know you like Cali girls and not east coasters. I'm bitter about the comment "leaving my mark w/ UCLA."
Come back and take on Hansbrough.
Hang a banner.
I'm out!

At Apr 28, 2008, 4:37:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

One and done is not legacy material in my mind. Even two and through doesn't excite me much. Three and flee and I'll remember ya and call it even. Four on the floor and well - we are buds for life.

At Apr 29, 2008, 2:23:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

smooth like butter Jake...

At Apr 29, 2008, 4:07:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As smooth as your crossover was in highschool jake....

At Apr 29, 2008, 4:25:00 AM, Anonymous willis said...

The major BIG that is hovering out there is Fairfax' 6-10 Renardo Sidney. Stay tuned.

At Apr 29, 2008, 5:41:00 AM, Anonymous KDL1984 said...

Only problems with Sidney are his attitude and grades. May not have the right stuff when it comes to discipline the Howland way. Before any recruit decides to play for UCLA, he has to have the grades. I just don't think he's got them, unless a C average is acceptable these days. Otherwise, UCLA would have already offered him, right? They've basically offered every other PF that's out there. Why haven't they offered him? Plus, no other program has offered either! Must be a good reason.
UCLA stands for academic and athletic excellence. One out of two isn't gonna cut it here!
Hey, maybe he can play across town!

At Apr 29, 2008, 6:53:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Again, whatcha talkin bout Willis?
Sidney is not UCLA caliber...attitude, grades....KDL is right...send him to SUC...

At Apr 29, 2008, 7:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where was it written that Sidney has bad grades and a bad attitude last year or this coming year? The past is the past, if he will buy into the Howland system and work hard then he is welcome as long as he qualifies with the minimal academic standards...
BBR, can you clear up what the status is now? Has he improved or is he just not going to happen for us?

At Apr 29, 2008, 7:55:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Report said...

Whether people think Sidney is UCLA material or not in terms of quality recruit...the most important judge of talent/attitude in the program happens to disagree - Coach Ben Howland.
We understand that Howland has been recruiting Sidney very hard all year. Despite the stories and internet chatter about Sidney, which in some cases has grown to mythical proportions, from what we understand Sidney is not only one of the most talented players in the nation but he is also a very unselfish teammate.
If Sidney qualifies academically and chooses to come to UCLA, one should expect a Howland-caliber player in every way. Expect no less.

At Apr 29, 2008, 9:06:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

I have read more than one article independent of BBR which have indicated that Sidney has problems on the court:
Temper tantrums
Lapse of focus
Inconsistent w/his hustle
Now not one of the articles ever questioned his ability, which is apparently so good, that it almost overshadows the above-mentioned issues.
This may be why every team to date has been reluctant to send him an offer. Makes me think he might be uncoachable.
Allen Iverson may be one of the most talented players on earth...but I sure wouldn't want his whiny style of play on my team! Something to think about...

At Apr 29, 2008, 12:44:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

I think most of the comments regarding Renardo Sidney are off base. Grades and attitude issues seem to all be conjecture and unsubstantiated.
I'm guessing the rumors are abound because of him skipping around schools etc trying to get more exposure.
I've seen him play and he is certainly talented. Perhaps he does tend to spend time on the perimeter but only because he can. He is very athletic and has an outside shot so he tends to play like a tweener (big/small forward). Which is great because he presents matchup problems the way Mbah a Moute does or Lamar Odom etc.
He does want to stay in Los Angeles - is my understanding which bodes well for UCLA (and USC for that matter).
I think like BBR said ... let's let Howland be the judge of all that and see how it plays out. He is sitting on top of the player rankings for good reason.

At Apr 29, 2008, 1:22:00 PM, Anonymous Rob said...

I may be somewhat older than many of you, but as I recall I was a total idiot when I was seventeen. I too have read many articles concerning Sydney's work ethic and maturity, but even if true he is ONLY A KID. Howland would be great for Sydney. Beats the sleaze-bag across town. I hope he comes to UCLA.

At Apr 29, 2008, 1:43:00 PM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Report said...

Take it for what its worth. Despite negative rumors and (old?) stories about Sidney's work ethic and attitude on the court, in the opinion of those who matter and know, it was not evident in his play at Fairfax last season.

At Apr 29, 2008, 3:58:00 PM, Anonymous Don said...

I can't agree more Rob. As a kid we all did some stupid things, but that is part of growing up... Sidney is as talented as they come and if Howland determines he is coachable and Sidney wants to play here more power to him... I agree Jake, he presents serious matchup issues and is only getting stronger. BBR, thanks for your perspective which is usually spot on

At Apr 29, 2008, 5:07:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

Nice to see so many folks posting on the site. Keep it up fellas ...

At Apr 30, 2008, 1:28:00 AM, Anonymous Smilin' said...

I am CERTAINLY much older than most on these threads, but if any watched the HBO Special: UCLA Dynasty, it sounds like you can make a fair comparison to Sidney Wickes and Renardo Sidney in terms of attitude.
Wickes himself essentially said he was a "PITA", and Wooden confirms as much. When Wickes got with the program, he started, starred, and was a 2 time NCAA Champ.
Walton had his issues as well. Between upper class leadership and CBH discipline, UCLA would be well-served to have Sidney come to Westwood.
If Sidney didn't work with the system, he wouldn't play, and his value to the NBA would diminish accordingly.

At Apr 30, 2008, 8:33:00 AM, Anonymous UCLA Fan from West Virginia said...

Guys, the main point is guidance...Some where along the way in High school there had to be a light to come on and say, this kid has big time potiential...Coach, parents, or some one had, needed to provide some guidance to this kid...
By the time his senior year come around and there is a blemish on his record, it is nearly impossible to make it go away, or better yet make every one forget it...
Usually where there is smoke, there is FIRE...

At Apr 30, 2008, 9:09:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

Well guys I hope the Bruins are as optimistic as a lot of your posts. The way Howland transformed KLove from a defensive liability to a beast in the paint in less than one year, I think Howland can do anything! Besides, the other kids positive actions would rub off on Sidney.
Please Ben please, keep him from going to SUC and coming back to bite us. That would REALLY suck!!!
I'm real crappy at rappin' but I've had a few brewskis so here goes:
Renardo don't make a move that would be retardo, comin' here would be right for you, all laid out in gold and baby blue, then just do as you're told, make those critics fade and fold, and in the end the trophy will be yours to hold!

At Apr 30, 2008, 9:38:00 AM, Anonymous BrewMaster said...

Not bad Brew In, Got one myself
>Confirm your worth,
your talent by birth,
come to the school,
proven and true,
that raises the bar,
set by Walton,
by Love, by Jabbar.
Given the Wizard's grace,
which makes this the place,
to master excellence,
so it only makes sense,
that a player as thee,
would rightfully see,
this is your opportunity,
and we hope you'll agree,
where greatness can be,
referred to as...
Renardo Sidney!<

At Apr 30, 2008, 10:55:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Smilin' - I agree, get Snidey in and if he doesn't work out, bench 'um!
BruinFan - Careful what you ask for. Sidney is awfully good and I, like many others here, don't want to see him go to the University of Spoiled Children. I'm tired of being surprised by the Nick Youngs and Davon Jeffersons of this world.
Brew Master - Good Rap
Brew In - Luv ya', but maybe have a few more brews then try again

At Apr 30, 2008, 11:17:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

By the way does anyone else do this?
We know the Bruins are known as a basketball powerhouse while the Trojans dominate the pigskin.
So I base the success of one over the other to who has a higher winning percentage each year between the Bruins Football team and the Trojan Basketball team.
USC Hoops(2007-08) 66%
UCLA Gridiron (2007) 47%
USC Hoops(2006-07) 68%
UCLA Gridiron (2006) 54%
USC Hoops(2005-06) 57%
UCLA Gridiron (2005) 84%
USC Hoops(2004-05) 43%
UCLA Gridiron (2004) 50%
I don't like this trend people. My point being, let's keep the talent away from the Trojans basketball court if ever given the chance!

At Apr 30, 2008, 12:06:00 PM, Anonymous Justin said...

So who are we gonna use Stanback's scholarship on now?

At May 1, 2008, 5:54:00 AM, Anonymous KDL1984 said...

I don't think anybody disagrees that he has the talent to play at UCLA. But, I pose the question again...if he's such a hot commodity, why hasn't any program offered him? Yes, we all made mistakes in the past. Some more than others. But I can just see what happens to the team with a player like Sidney....One night he goes off for a 20-20 game, the next, he's called for technical and flagrant fouls and gets suspended from the team for 5 games. I've never liked head cases regardless of how much talent they have. That idealism is what got the team across town an early exit from the tournament. It's about winning as a team, not as 1 star and 4 assist men. I agree, Howland has the last word and I would expect him to make the right decision. I just don't want to see UCLA stoop down to a level where it's just about winning and not about the principals of teamwork and being humble (see Wooden, John R.). His legacy is what made UCLA and the ideals of the pyramid of success, although quite old now, still hold true. Our program has always reflected what's good about basketball. I'd support any decision that Howland makes. He's never led us astray. But, when we start putting winning in front of ethics, my support will diminish.
I think I'd rather have a bunch of less talented, non-head cases than one superstar who's head is bigger than Pauley Pavilion. (See Mayo, O.J.)
Enough said....

At May 3, 2008, 6:58:00 PM, Anonymous Mike said...

Why is USC hitting Renardo Sidney the hardest on the recruiting trail? Where are the Bruins?

At May 3, 2008, 6:58:00 PM, Anonymous Mike said...

Why is USC hitting Renardo Sidney the hardest on the recruiting trail? Where are the Bruins?


Post a Comment

<< Back To Bruin Basketball Report Home