What makes UCLA's 2016 recruiting class the fourth best in the country?

UCLA has Scout's 4th ranked class with the addition of 22nd rated 2016 prospect T.J. Leaf. What do all four commits bring to the table?

With the addition of five-star T.J. Leaf on Thursday, UCLA now has the 4th best recruiting class in the country and it’s a group of four players which complement each other perfectly.

The 6-foot-10 Leaf gives UCLA Scout’s 22nd ranked 2016 prospect and a power forward who is a real threat as a scorer from the high post and in. He can hit midrange jumpers or take bigger defenders off the dribble and score around the basket.

He passes very well and is a good rebounder for the position. Leaf’s size, skill set athleticism, motor and consistency make him a safe bet to be a very productive college player.

Of course, the class is headlined by Chino Hills (Calif.) point guard Lonzo Ball, Scout’s 14th ranked prospect in 2016. At 6-foot-5, Ball has terrific size for the position and he’s the nation’s top passer, regardless of class. Ball is a streaky shooter but has deep range on his jumper and rebounds very well.

Ball’s outlet passing will remind UCLA fans of Kevin Love’s and he’s a perfect fit for an up-tempo, offensive oriented system. He’ll have to get better on defense, but what he brings so much to the table on offense that you live with it even if there isn’t a big jump on that side of the court.

He’ll be joined in the backcourt by Kobe Paras of Los Angeles Cathedral. Paras is a wing with good size at 6-foot-6 with very long arms and a smooth stroke. He’s a bouncy player who can hit jumpers or attack the basket. Like Ball, he’ll need to improve defensively, but there is definitely upside.

Leaf, Ball and Paras are all offensive oriented players, which makes Ike Anigbogu the perfect addition to the class. There has to be someone to intimidate opponents from slashing and Anigbogu will fill that role perfectly.

At 6-foot-10 with long arms, a terrific frame and strong athleticism for the position, Scout’s 35th ranked 2016 prospect is an elite rim protector who rebounds well. Anigbogu will need to keep improving offensively, but he’s gotten better and has a very high ceiling.

This is an extremely successful recruiting class for UCLA, which already has some good young talent in the program with players such as Aaron Holiday, Prince Ali, Isaac Hamilton, Jonah Bolden and Thomas Welsh.

The addition of Ball, Leaf, Anigbogu and Paras to that group should make the Bruins a real threat to compete for a Pac-12 title and deep NCAA tournament run very quickly.


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