Friday, May 23, 2008

Center J'mison Morgan Headed To UCLA

By Bruin Basketball Report


J'mison Morgan is now officially headed to UCLA. The Dallas South Oak Cliff HS senior announced today UCLA has received his release papers from LSU and that he's headed to attend school and play basketball in Westwood.


"It's UCLA this time around," Morgan said. "It was all about the comfort level with the players and the coaches. There have been so many great centers at UCLA and it's my chance to make my mark there."


Morgan had committed and signed a letter of intent with LSU last year but after head coach John Brady was fired from the school, Morgan and his family began to reconsider their decision to attend LSU.


The 6'10, 265 lb center was released from his national letter of intent from LSU earlier this month, but there was a delay in the paperwork transfer to UCLA.


The five-star recruit should get immediate playing time in the upcoming season. Center Kevin Love opted to enter the NBA draft and appears to be lottery-bound. Love's departure leaves just Alfred Aboya as UCLA's only experienced center. The Bruins also have incoming center/power forward Drew Gordon who has been impressive in postseason play. Look for Gordon to spend time at both low post spots in the incoming season.


Morgan's commitment to UCLA solidifies it's 2008 recruiting class as tops in the nation. He joins Jrue Holiday, Malcolm Lee, Jerime Anderson, and Gordon in Westwood next season.


Morgan averaged 13.5 points, 11 rebounds and 4 blocked shots as a senior last season.


Since NCAA rules state a player may only sign one letter of intent per year, Morgan will instead sign a grant-in-aid. It is binding on UCLA but not on Morgan. He will be bound to the school once he enrolls at UCLA. Morgan is expected to enroll and take classes this summer on campus.


(photo credit: Dallas Morning News)

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17 Comments:

At May 23, 2008, 9:47:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin 2005 said...

First...
Awesome I have be refreshing so much on google news I thought my computer was going to shut down

 
At May 23, 2008, 10:07:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Thanks for the great news BBR! Keep them coming Bruins!!!
2009...
2010...
2011...

 
At May 23, 2008, 10:39:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fantastic!

 
At May 23, 2008, 12:38:00 PM, Anonymous Bruinator said...

Kevin who?

 
At May 23, 2008, 5:45:00 PM, Anonymous DorianGraysBlues said...

Alex Stevenson?...Demar De Rozan, anyone?
Greatest class of all time?

 
At May 23, 2008, 9:14:00 PM, Anonymous DB said...

Even if Demar is available, i doubt ucla would take or want to take him in. He is a one and done player most likely and in a position and team that is now deep so playing time would be difficult. Not to mention there arent enough scholarships available.
Getting Morgan is a huge bonus and if Bruins get stephenson, it be really amazing.

 
At May 24, 2008, 1:05:00 AM, Anonymous Rome 06' said...

Ben, we love you...please stay in Cali...forever!!! My q: there have been many great classes in the past, but is this arguably the best incoming freshman class post-Wooden era? Is there even any debate?

 
At May 24, 2008, 1:52:00 AM, Anonymous Fran said...

I have been a fan since Sidney Wicks and Curtis Roe and actully when Kareem was there - a fan thru good and bad - but now...WOW!!!!

 
At May 24, 2008, 2:42:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Ben Howland, you are the man. We appreciate all you have done. Let's hang a banner and continue our DYNASTY
Thanks BBR...keep it coming...

 
At May 24, 2008, 3:47:00 AM, Anonymous DorianGraysBlues said...

I've grown to believe that in order to attract top talent what you have to do is go further in the tournament than you were supposed to do. The last 3 years ucla has done that. We are now bearing the fruit of that.
I've been a bruin fan since kareem's last year in college. My favourite years were the Wicks-Rowe-Patterson years because, although they were ranked no. 1 most of the time, they had to really struggle to win. Saint John (I know you old timers remember the nick-name) had to do his best coaching during this time. Patterson might have been the first center with a consistent outside jump shot. Rowe was a tough, solid consistant forward who could score. Wicks was the best player in college ball for two years and as clutch a player as the Bruins have ever had. Henry Bibby was a 3 point specialist extraordinaire before the line was drawn and a senior the 1st of those two years, making it four members who developed into solid pro-level players.
Lastly, this is easily the best class since wooden although bartow had a very good one with David Greenwood, Roy Hamilton and a shooting guard whose name I forget, but he was a very good college guard. And Howland had a very good one with Farmar, Afflalo, Shipp and Mata-Real. Bottom line is, i think we go from 3 final fours to 3 championships.
God has blessed us with ben howland as he had blessed us with Saint John.

 
At May 24, 2008, 7:55:00 AM, Anonymous bruin66 said...

No doubt about it, the 70-71 Wicks-Rowe squad was great. But the best coaching had to be 63-64 (check BBRs historical rosters) - nobody over 6'5". The introduciton of St John's (he was Gentleman Johnny in those days)press. Three future NBA all-stars.
And let's get off KL's case. He showed a lot of class.

 
At May 24, 2008, 9:14:00 AM, Anonymous David G. said...

I love this class. I don't think it's going to be like Michigan's Fab Five because all five won't be starters at the same time, but this is easily the best class UCLA's had since 1999's frosh class of Gadzuric-Moiso-Barnes-Young-Rush. Obviously, that class didn't live up to its potential because of Steve Lavin, but based on raw potential as a frosh class, it stacks up against any UCLA has brought in.

 
At May 24, 2008, 4:27:00 PM, Anonymous luap said...

The shooting guard who played with Greenwood and Hamilton was Brad Holland.

 
At May 26, 2008, 1:01:00 PM, Anonymous DorianGraysBlues said...

Thanks, luap, for filling in my omission.
Holland, although no nba all-star, was a sharp shooter and does have an nba championship. He was drafted by the lakers and was on the 79-80 team led by Kareem (his last league mvp)and an upstart rookie.
Also, David G., you are correct, the 1999 was does stack up very well. I think Howland could have worked wonders with Gadzuric. and who knew Rush was a tragedy waiting to happen?
I'm still rooting for Barnes, although I think the year or two he sat on the bench, behind Rush, really hurt his developement. Even though Rush was better, I thought if Barnes had started 3 or 4 years he might have been an all-american power forward.
And I'm still pissed at Lavin for taking Barnes out of his last ncaa tounament game when he was playing the game of his life. Yes, Lavin was right, he was tired, but he was a HOT as he had ever been as a Bruin. And he was rested when he came back in, but he was cold. and ucla lost.

 
At May 26, 2008, 1:52:00 PM, Anonymous Rick1967 said...

My loyalties go back to 1963-64, my freshman year at UCLA--what a team that was. Thanks so much, Ben H, for bringing the Bruins back to national prominence. As for recruiting classes, I'm excited as I've ever been over this one, though I also wonder what Ben could have done with the '99 class (ever notice how no one improved much over 4 years of playing for Lavin?). The best ever remains '65, with all-Americans Lew Alcindor, Lucius Allen, Lynn Shackelford, Kenny Heitz, and all-Texas point guard Kent Taylor. I was at the first game ever played at Pauley when they trounced the #1 ranked varsity. I'd take that bunch over Michigan's Fab Five any day (won 3 titles to none for UM, and would have been 4 if freshmen had been eligible).

 
At May 27, 2008, 9:09:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin66 said...

Rick - Who did you cheer for in that legendary varsity-frosh game? I was glad to see how great the frosh were (Kenny Heitz at one guard played CENTER in HS), but after all the varsity were our returning heroes. The frosh won every game that year by almost 100 points (Gary Cunnigham kep the starters in since the prupose was to get practive).

 
At May 30, 2008, 11:34:00 AM, Anonymous Rick1967 said...

Bruin66--
As I recall, we all just sat there for a few minutes waiting for something to happen, and then...I'll never forget Lew slashing across the lane and dunking right over one of the varsity. The place exploded. I think from that point on, I couldn't help but cheer for the freshmen.
I think your memory has inflated their scores a bit. They dominated, but not quite that much. I do remember them beating Citrus JC by over 100, because my cousin was student body president there and he came to the game. I snuck him into the Bruin section, and he slowly sank below the bleachers. Final score was 152-49. Ah, what memories!

 

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