James Keefe Makes an Early Decision

A top-25 national recruit in the class of 2006, 6-8 <b>James Keefe</b> from Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita, verbally committed to UCLA today...

James Keefe, the 6-8 junior power forward from Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita, got his decision out of the way early.

"I verbally committed to UCLA today," Keefe said. "I felt UCLA was the whole package, with a great reputation academically, and a great basketball program, with history and tradition. The coaching staff is great, and I know they really wanted me a lot. It was the best decision for me."

Keefe, considered a top 25 national prospect in the class of 2006, said the talent UCLA has been getting was a factor. "With the great freshmen they have this year, and then they signed a great class for 2005, it shows that they're on their way back. I want to be a part of that rebuilding and win some championships. By the time that I get there I'm sure we'll be really good."

Keefe said he felt he wanted to go to UCLA for some time and wanted to get the commitment out of the way early. "I wanted to do it before my season started, so I could get it over with and focus on my junior year and high school season. I also wanted to see how the 2005 class would play out."

Keefe chose UCLA over Arizona, Duke, Notre Dame and Stanford.

CAT TRACKS' ANALYSIS: This one kind of hurts the Wildcats. Keefe is one of the better prospects on the West Coast and is a top-tier big man who is college bound. The Cats seemed in good shape after a Midnight Madness, but all it seemed to do was push Keefe towards the Bruins. The Cats are in good shape with a number of talented big men, but many of these guys will be flirting with the NBA.

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