Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Drew Gordon To Leave UCLA Program

By Bruin Basketball Report

Sophomore center Drew Gordon is no longer a member of the UCLA men’s basketball team by mutual agreement, head coach Ben Howland announced today. 

“After several discussions with Drew, we both have decided that it is in the best interests of our program and Drew that he continues his career at another school,” Howland said. 

“He is no longer a member of our team and will transfer at the end of the quarter.
“This is not a spur of the moment decision and ultimately, it’s what’s best for all parties.”

Gordon, UCLA's starting center, was the team's third-leading scorer averaging 11.2 points and was second on the squad in rebounds with 5.3 per game in 6  games.  He averaged 24.5 minutes per contest.

Gordon's departure leaves a gapping hole in the middle for the Bruins, but it opens up opportunities for freshman Reeves Nelson and sophomore J'mison Morgan to show they can contribute. 

Nelson has been a solid frosh contributor this season averaging 7.3 points and 4.3 rebounds in just 14.8  minutes per game.  While Morgan has played sparingly this year but is expected to see more time on the court with the departure of Gordon.


At Dec 1, 2009, 7:34:00 AM, Anonymous Gustavo Gallardo said...

what is the real reason for this decision ?

At Dec 1, 2009, 7:38:00 AM, Anonymous BZ said...

I have a feeling its because Gordon is not the type of hard-nosed player Howland expects from his post men.
Think Mata and Aboya - buth then also think about how tough Kevin Love and for that matter Ryan Hollins became under Howland.
I doubt think Gordon felt he wanted to be a blue-collar center. But that's exactly what Howland wants...UCLA needs. Look at what Villanova did to us.

At Dec 1, 2009, 7:40:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

This is really strange! I agree, what happened!?!

At Dec 1, 2009, 7:40:00 AM, Anonymous JDay said...

I hear they've butted heads since Gordon came to UCLA. But what a lost!

At Dec 1, 2009, 8:27:00 AM, Anonymous Paul said...

Good luck to Drew Gordon. I was at the Cal St. Fullerton debacle and noticed how Gordon kept complaining to the UCLA bench that he was getting pushed in the back. He did this several times. I remember thinking that was pretty soft, complaining about being pushed around by some Titans. He should've pushed back or quite complaining and played harder. He never seemed like a good fit to me.

At Dec 1, 2009, 8:31:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Hey everybody! I'm intrigued by this young team. Howland has been recruiting players who are gr8 at Div 5 CIF...what he lacks are studs that can be impact freshman (see this years class)...Oh, can we get another non-turnover prone point guard??
Is Brew in still providing the nachos??...Hope all is well...I live in San Diego now...

At Dec 1, 2009, 9:39:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

Hey BruinFan, long time! No nachos have even been worthy to bring out and watch the games with. The only thing I've been chewing on is my nails and I've run out of them.
Coach H has a different kind of problem this year. Instead of things like boxing out, stopping penetration or keeping down turnovers, he has to keep the peace, prevent mutiny (Gordon), and try to salvage a somewhat respectable season to keep the recruits coming in.
Definitely will be his most trying year since his first year here!

At Dec 1, 2009, 9:48:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

We need to beef up! Josh Smith is a step in the right direction. Coach H needs to quit overloading our team with 6'8", 200 pound power forwards, 6'7", 185 pound shooting forwards, or 6'1" 175 point guards. Time to get bigger like a good majority of the other dominating programs around the country. We need a few semi-athletic bruisers on the squad every year. In 2010 comes Josh Smith and we should get the big guy Kyle Caudill from Orange County in 2011. Need those boys to fill up the lane and knock some guys around.
Boy did we get spoiled when we had Love and Mata playing at the same time!!!

At Dec 1, 2009, 10:21:00 AM, Anonymous ralph said...


At Dec 1, 2009, 10:42:00 AM, Anonymous Tim said...

Woah! I didn't realize how much turmoil there was between Gordon and the staff. I'm quite sad that one our players is leaving like this, but I guess it must be done. Now that this story has hit daylight I guess I did notice how Gordon just didn't seem to fit into Howland's system, big man willing to play East Coast style defense first and foremost.
Does this mean Reeves Nelson moves into the starting 5? Personally, I would love to see "Bobo" get in on the action. He could become an excellant shot blocker and rebounder for a team that's really lacking.
On an unrelated note, how many of our current players are likely to leave for the NBA at the end of the season? Well, is Malcom Lee likely to leave after the end of the season?

At Dec 1, 2009, 12:35:00 PM, Anonymous Kris said...

Godon leaving ucla is a shock but I think Nelson will develope into an awesome player alone with lane and Josh Smith at the center. What UCLA needs is "GUARDS" Both Lee and Anderson are not UCLA material. Howland needs to look for a few 6.4 guard like will Memphis had when they crushed UCLA.

At Dec 1, 2009, 1:46:00 PM, Anonymous Grrravy said...

Agreed with Ralph. UCLA has no offense. A lot of other Bruin 'blogs' blame the players but it all starts with the head coach.
I wish Drew Gordon well and I would not be surprised if a few others leave as well. Bruin fans better pray that Malcolm Lee is staying for another season.
The Commissioner was one of my favorite players. I hope he succeeds wherever he goes.
BTW - Malcolm Lee is good, it's just that Coach Howland doesn't know how to utilize him.

At Dec 2, 2009, 1:36:00 AM, Anonymous Jackson Mcgee said...

Gordon was pretty soft for his size...not a Howland type of player.

At Dec 2, 2009, 3:23:00 AM, Anonymous wufler said...

Gordon is not a center...he was a power forward being pushed into the center spot because Bobo couldn't step up, this decision makes me very sad but rebuilding is tough on everyone involved I hope Howland can keep this together

At Dec 2, 2009, 4:25:00 AM, Anonymous Faarrrrtt said...

Note to our football and basketball programs: UCLA is all about athletes, flashy offense, and showtime. The current programs are boring...and Cal-like.

At Dec 2, 2009, 4:51:00 AM, Anonymous Matt Stairs said...

Bottom-line: UCLA needs a true point guard. Everything starts at the point. Malcolm Lee is not a point guard.

At Dec 2, 2009, 4:57:00 AM, Anonymous ReactionOC said...

The LA Times quote had Howland say "He has a lot to learn and he knows that". Leads me to believe Drew stopped listening to BH. BH won't tolerate stubborn players that won't get on board with him. Good luck Drew! 2008 Fab Five Scorecard....
J'rue Holiday- NBA
Drew Gordon-quit
Bobo Morgan-Over hyped and underachieving
Malcom Lee-Creator, but not a finisher
Jerime Anderson-Lost and not big program point guard.
This is not Ben Howlands fault. Going off the rating system, UCLA should have been a top 10 team THIS year. LAST year was the transition year. BH got Collison, Shipp and Aboya to stay to get to this year's Sophomore class. They were supposed RELOAD not REBUILD!

At Dec 2, 2009, 5:21:00 AM, Anonymous Swami Mikey said...

There was a telling line in the L.A. Times article - something to the effect that a number of players will not be sad to see Gordon go. Hopefully the team will rally around each other now. As for Bobo, it is not surprising that I can see in my crystal ball a zone defense with Bobo getting a lot more minutes.

At Dec 2, 2009, 5:27:00 AM, Anonymous Lucius Jackson said...

Howland needs to let some hungry walk-ons or JC transfers onto the team...make our players work harder.

At Dec 2, 2009, 7:21:00 AM, Anonymous Parkman96 said...

Am happy to see Gordon go. Anyone that messes with Howland shouldn't be there. He is a proven winner, loves his players(follows all their NBA careers etc.) but demands toughness from his team. He doesn't care about massaging some 19 year olds ego and if you are going to play for Ucla you better bring it. This group is not but my belief is it is not for trying, they just aren't good. Keefe is not a starting center, roll should not be our main scorer, and Andersen should be playing for a Div-II team. Anyways if Gordon is a whinner glad he is gone. Still have hope for the season because of Howland's toughness, but we will have to see

At Dec 2, 2009, 8:17:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Loss of Holiday hurts
Anderson = Div II
Bobo - No game
Gordon - Gone
Lee - OK (our best player)
Honeycutt - pending opinion
Keefe, Roll, Drag - Not UCLA Caliber
R Nelson, Moser, A. Stover, B Lane - didn't play anybody good in high school
Whoever is doing the recruiting for Howland needs to be fired, along with the trainer...
Where's the nearest church...I'll beg for the N.I.T.

At Dec 2, 2009, 9:16:00 AM, Anonymous Jake Waters said...

bruin fan youre a joke. you cant grade our current freshman, they have not had enough opportunity.
get outta here foolish ****

At Dec 3, 2009, 8:15:00 AM, Anonymous Jammer said...

Check out what other prominent schools have in the way of Freshman talent. Kansas, Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina, Michigan State, Florida ... these frosh can flat out play the game. Our Freshmen and Sophs simply don't have the talent to compete. Holiday's gone and Lee and Anderson should be playing on Div II teams.
Give these guys some playing time to develop; especially the bigs. Having Roll as your go to guy is ridiculously unfair on the Senior who must be counting the days to get out of Pauley.
Loved the hire of Howland and if he could get the same kind of recruits he got at Pitt, the Bruins would be fine. We lack shooters, we lack skilled big men, we lack a zone defence and a zone offense. Gordon's departure is unfortunate; but how is Drogovic still on a team that prides itself on top of the line student athletes. Drags is hardly the "good citizen".
Lee is a great on ball defender, but no point guard to lead an offense.
Anderson is a shooting guard who doesnt shoot well. Shadow Roll and he you shut him down. Jury is still out on Nelson, Moser, Stover and Lane
Swallow your pride; play zone and help defense and hope to keep it within 40 of the Jayhawks.

At Dec 3, 2009, 10:27:00 AM, Anonymous Tim said...

I'll agree Lee is our best on ball defender, but it's not really worth noting cause he hasn't slowed anyone this season..
Anderson is a shooting guard?... Definately a point that isn't ready to start.
Anyone know Honeycutt's skill set? Is he a perimeter player (3pt shooter/slasher/scorer) or post player (back to the basket/face-up game)?

At Dec 4, 2009, 1:24:00 AM, Anonymous Swami Mikey said...

Jammer: I just saw Honeycutt briefly in one of the exhibition games. It looks like he is a slasher with good passing skills. He is very thin - almost definitely not a post up guy. We'll see if he can shoot the ball.

At Dec 4, 2009, 10:29:00 AM, Anonymous Jammer said...

Howland needs to realize he doesnt have the bodies to play man to man with anyone. Fullerton was a more athletic team and they took it to the Bruins. Our closest game was against Butler, but they were smarter and more disciplined. We know how that turned out.
Howland's gotta stress team defense. On ball defense is all about forcing your opponent where you want him to go and then help out. Lee can do that, but then the other guys have to provide some weakside help.
Lee will play big against Collins, but Jayhawks have way too much talent -- 10 deep and strong at every position. A kid deciding between Lawrence and Westwood -- if he wants to win; he'll go to the snow and get coached by Self.
Compare the Kansas frosh to the Bruins and there lies the gap in these two storied programs.

At Dec 5, 2009, 1:39:00 AM, Anonymous justin said...

I'm glad to see him go. Horrible attitude. With all the people that left UCLA he could have stepped up but he is obviously to scared and childish to be a good player. His family said he has received so many offers. Good - let someone else deal with missing layups left and right. He's soft and will never amount to anything in basketball.

At Dec 9, 2009, 7:21:00 AM, Anonymous BNR said...

Anderson = Can't teach skill and this child has none - even reflex's aren't very good
Bobo - Done - Will be leaving soon - Big clown with no heart
Gordon - Can you say Andre Patterson - what is he doing now?
Lee - Will grow into a good player - has disfunction all around him at the moment
Honeycutt - Expect mistakes early will grow and add value
Keefe, terrible disappointment, seems like a nice kid. Don't blame a guy for trying
Roll - making the most of what he has - has skills and doesn't try to do more than he can but currently pushed to his limitations
Drag - Whoever thought this clown was a UCLA caliber starter? Please. My 3 yearold shoots better
R Nelson - Love this guy, much bigger things to come, hope his attitude is better than Gordons
Moser, - Jury is out
A. Stover - Wasn't expected to play a roll this year - Project that could pay off
B Lane - will get much better as he grows - evidence of some skills there. This type of kid doesn't slay the dragon in freshman year....he needs to percolate
Joshua Smith - Good recruit start running him as soon as his injury heals
Bottom line - need to recruit Top 10 talent at guards and more than 1 - depth = winning at the big schools. Check out Texas this year.


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