2014 Rankings Report: UCLA

Here is a look at where the UCLA Bruins commitments come in, in the final 2014 rankings, and why they are ranked where they are.

The first full class for Steve Alford at UCLA by every single measure will go down as a success despite missing out on a key point guard. The Bruins now have three five-star prospects, and that will solidify the frontcourt for the Bruins for a long time.

Leading the way for the Bruins is five-star power forward Kevon Looney. Looney mostly stayed steady in the rankings going down slightly from No. 14 to No. 15, but he remained a five-star prospect and also retained his ranking within the power forward position group.

With Looney it is simple, he runs the floor well, has decent skill in the mid-range, and is a very good rebounder with length. Not an elite athlete, Looney relies on solid motor going to the backboard to produce along with a surprising skill, though his lack of physical strength and ability to have a go-to offensive move limited him from the top 10 relative to his peers.

Making a huge move up in the final rankings was Thomas Welsh. Welsh jumped up to No. 17 from No. 45 in the rankings, and was bumped up to five-star status. The reason is simple, the rapidly improving Welsh showed that he is as good as nearly any big in this class at running the floor and scoring around the bucket.

While not an elite athlete, Welsh is solid, and more than holds his own against the best. Given the trajectory of his game, and the upside he has, moving Welsh to the five-star level was a fairly unanimous decision.

Also jumping into the five-star ranks was Jonah Bolden. Bolden transferred from Findlay Prep to Brewster Academy during the year, and there he showed his significant potential. Versatility, athleticism, and upside all define Bolden's game who is now No. 25 overall after previously being No. 30 and a four-star recruit.

At this point Bolden has limited experience within the United States, but he made a huge impression during that time, and should be able to make an immediate impact for the Bruins. He is just now scratching the surface of his ability, and could quickly make big improvements to his game.

The final member of the UCLA class is Gyorgy Goloman. Like in the last rankings, Goloman is an unranked three-star recruit. Now there is some talent there, but we felt as a team that he was too raw and didn't have quite enough upside to throw into the rankings or jump up to the five-star level.

Overall as evidenced by their jumps in the rankings, UCLA signees had tremendous senior seasons. Alford is off to a good start on the recruiting trail, and this group ranks right up there with almost any in the country.


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