UCLA has two players who are verbally committed, and that hasn't changed since July. In August, a few of UCLA's remaining targets have taken unofficial visits to UCLA's campus, and they'll continue to do so. Things could heat up a bit more starting September 9th when the Contact Period begins and college coaches can start having in-home visits with prospects, watch them at their high schools, call and write them and also have them on campus for official visits.
UCLA continues to want to sign a five-man class in 2012. With a point guard and one wing already in the fold, they'd like another wing, a power forward and a center or, if they can't get a true center, two posts.
For a look at a projection of UCLA's future depth chart and recruiting needs, go here.
Jordan Adams, 6-4 shooting guard from Mouth of Wilson (Virg.) Oak Hill. Adams, even though he's not a great athlete, showed in July that he certainly can fill it up, displaying a very good outside shot and a kind of old-school offensive game. He is currently the #74 player nationally. Committed.
Dominic Artis, 5-11 point guard from Las Vegas (Nev.) Findlay Prep. He emerged as one of the best point guards in the country in spring and summer, with a very good handle and skills. He's #64 nationally. Committed.
Shabazz Muhammad, 6-5 small forward, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman. The best player in the country, Muhammad has a list of UCLA, Arizona, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, and UNLV. Even though there's been quite a bit of talk about Kentucky doing well with Muhammad, we still hear that UCLA is the leader, and that the program that poses the biggest threat is hometown UNLV. He has said he'll visit Kentucky and Duke officially. He recently visited UCLA unofficially, along with a few other prime targets (mentioned below), and there is still the talk that Muhammad will headline a group of elite 2012 players committing to UCLA. Ranked #1.
Kyle Anderson, 6-7 point forward, Jersey City (New Jersey) St. Anthony. Anderson is one of the most skilled players in the nation. He recently visited UCLA unofficially after being in Los Angeles for Adidas Nations, along with Muhammad, and the two are friends and have said they could go to UCLA together. Anderson is in L.A. again for the Boost Mobile Elite 24 game this week and he plans on visiting UCLA unofficially, perhaps a number of times (he was on campus Monday). There are reports that he'll also unofficially visit Georgetown (August 30th), Seton Hall (Sept. 1st), and St. John's (Sept. 2nd), officially visit Florida Sept. 16th, and then make his announcement September 20th. He is the #5 prospect in the nation.
Brandon Ashley, 6-8 power forward, Henderson (Nev. ) Findlay Prep. The athletic, quick forward is on the same AAU team, the Oakland Soldiers, with Artis (and now on the same high school team), and the two are friends. Ashley has long been thought to be a lean toward Arizona, and that's still believed to be the case, but things could shake out a certain way with Arizona recruiting that could make him look elsewhere. The word is that he's narrowed his list to Arizona, UCLA, Kentucky, and Oregon. Don't count out Kentucky or Oregon either. Ranked the #4 player in the nation.
William Goodwin, 6-7 power forward, Decatur (Georgia) Southwest Dekalb. "Shaq" visited UCLA unofficially in August about the same time as Muhammad, Anderson and Adams, and he also met with UCLA football coach Rick Neuheisel, since he intends to play both football and basketball in college. Of course, his former AAU coach, Korey McCray, is now an assistant at UCLA, and that definitely helps. Ranked #25.
Amile Jefferson, 6-7 power forward, Wynnewood (Penn.) Friends' Central. Jefferson is a long athlete with some tremendous upside. He'll be in town for the Boost Mobile game, and plans to visit UCLA unofficially. The Bruins are trying, and perhaps the visit can get them on Jefferson's map, which already includes St. John's, Villanova, and North Carolina State. Nation's #21 prospect.
Torian Graham, 6-4 shooting guard, Raleigh (North Carolina), Word of God Christian Academy. Graham is a very good athlete who was committed to North Carolina State, but then de-committed and has opened up his recruitment. He has said he wants to check out UCLA. #52 in the nation.
Arnaud Moto, 6-5 small forward, Alexandria (Virg.) Episcopal. Moto, originally from Cameroon, is a very good athlete with good skills. He was injured for most of July, but UCLA saw him enough to be going after him aggressively. He plans to take official visits, and he'll choose from among his final six that includes UCLA, Florida, Miami, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest. He went back to Cameroon after July so not much recent news can be found on him, but the word is that UCLA has a real chance with him, and is trying to use their Cameroon connections. #59 in the country.
D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, 6-3 shooting guard, Mouth of Wilson (Virg.) Oak Hill. Smith-Rivera is a strong, stocky combo guard with skills. It seems that the UCLA/Smith-Rivera relationship has cooled some, but it's not over completely. Texas, Baylor, Georgetown, Louisville and Michigan State are the main players. Nation's #31 prospect.
Joel James, 6-10 center, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) William Dwyer. James is a big, burly, physical center. He took an unofficial visit to UCLA on August 1st, when he was in Los Angeles, and the Bruins are recruiting him. Florida, Louisville, Ohio State and many others are involved. Country's #71 prospect.
Chris Obekpa , 6-8 post, Centereach (New York), Our Savior New American School. Originally from Nigeria, Obekpa is a springy athlete, good defender and shot blocker. UCLA saw him in July and has started to recruit him.
Zena Edosomwan, 6-7 power forward, North Hollywood (Calif.) Harvard-Westlake. Edosomwan had a good spring and summer, and has dramatically improved. He recently said he's down to USC, Wake Forest, Harvard, Texas, Washington and California, but if UCLA offered they'd quickly jump to the head of that list. At least, that's how it's been previously, but we're hearing that it could be getting late in the game for UCLA. #63 nationally.
Josh Scott, 6-9 post, Monument (Col.) Lewis-Palmer. An agile, developing post prospect, he's verbally committed to Colorado, but after a good July other schools are checking out their chances, including UCLA. At this point it seems like his commitment to Colorado is solid.
Xavier Johnson, 6-6 small forward, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei. You have to give Johnson a great deal of credit; he started July a bit nicked up and out-of-sorts on the court, but in the second half of the month he really stepped it up and played well. Arizona State, Cal, San Diego State, UNLV and USC are going after him hard. Nation's #83 prospect.
Tyrone Wallace, 6-4 combo guard, Bakersfield (Calif.) High. He showed well in July, displaying an improved shot and increased athleticism. Arizona State, Cal, Colorado, Gonzaga, Oregon and others are all over him. He has said he wants to hold out until spring to see what other options he has, and it's mostly thought that he's waiting on a UCLA offer. But we'll see if he actually makes it through November and not sign, and if UCLA does offer him. #78 nationally.
Of course it's difficult to project how many scholarships will be open a year or two down the line, but If UCLA does indeed sign five prospects for 2012, and the jump-early-to-the-NBA guys do what you think they'll do, UCLA should have 3, and possibly 4 rides for the 2013 class. A point guard would be good, but more ideal would be a combo guard to come in after Artis in 2012. There is definitely a need for a small forward type, and then probably a post – the best power forward or center UCLA could get.
Zach Lavine, 6-1 combo guard, Bothell (Wash.) High. It's probably fortunate for UCLA that Lavine injured his hip and sat out July; UCLA would prefer all the high-major programs across the country not see Lavine. He came to UCLA's camp in June and looked like Stephen Curry, with the scoring skills of a shooting guard and the ball-handling of a point guard. The word is that he's close to committing to UCLA. UCLA has obviously offered. He's ranked the #74 prospect in the 2013 class nationally, but that ranking is low since not too many national scouts have seen Lavine – and again, that's beneficial for UCLA.
Beejay Anya, 6-8 center, Hyattsville (Maryland) DeMatha Catholic. Another Cameroonian, Anya plays on the same AAU team as Moto, and UCLA is trying to play up their Cameroon connections. Anya is a big body who is a true post. At this point it's pretty wide open for him, but he'll have the likes of Georgetown, Indiana, Texas, Pittsburgh and others on him. Whoever gets Moto could have a real advantage with Anya. He has a UCLA offer and is #42 nationally for 2013.
Dakarai Allen, 6-4 shooting guard, Sacramento (Calif.) Shelton. One of the best athletes on the west coast regardless of class, Allen is seeing his recruiting skyrocket as a result of a good July. Arizona and Colorado are on him hard early, and UCLA hasn't offered yet. But, if he doesn't commit early, he'll be a target of national high-majors by next spring/summer. UCLA hasn't offered. Ranked #80.
Jordan Bell, 6-6 power forward, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly. Bell, physically, looks like a small forward at this point, but he's a great athlete, being one of the best rebounders and shot blockers on the west coast. If you project him out with just average development it's easy to see him as a high-major, and being at Long Beach Poly and a very local kid, the potential for UCLA to make him a target. No UCLA offer yet. #77.
Jabari Bird, 6-5 shooting guard, Richmond (Calif.) Salesian. Bird is one of the best players in the west for 2013. He's very athletic, with one of those flexible, lithe bodies; he always seems to be in the right place at the right time for the timely rebound or putback, and his skills have continued to improve. Despite Bird being Artis' AAU teammate, and former high school teammate (before Artis transferred to Las Vegas Findlay Prep), UCLA, at this point, is behind in its recruitment of Bird, trailing Arizona, Cal and Washington. UCLA hasn't offered. #17 nationally.
Isaac Hamilton, 6-4 shooting guard, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco. One of the west's top scorers, Hamilton had a good summer and improved his stock. Arizona is probably out front, with other national programs, but he does like UCLA and has said he'd like to stay close to home. UCLA hasn't offered yet. #35 nationally.
Stephen Domingo, 6-6 small forward, San Francisco (Calif.) St. Ignatius. Domingo has good offensive skills, with a consistent outside shot. The question will be if he ends up a power forward or not, or is able to guard a small forward. He played on the same AAU team with the son of UCLA assistant coach Phil Mathews, so there is a good connection there. UCLA hasn't offered. #31 nationally.
Brandon Randolph, 6-1 point guard, Playa Del Rey (Calif.) St. Bernard. A strong, quick scoring lead guard, and will be one of the best point guards in the west for 2013.
Chance Murray, 6-0 shooting guard, Los Angeles (Calif.) Price. Murray is a nice outside shooter, but he hasn't developed at the rate you would have liked, still being an under-sized shooting guard with only average athleticism. UCLA offered Murray a while back, but it's questionable whether that offer still holds.
Kameron Rooks, 6-9 center, San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills, A very big body, Rooks, the son of former Arizona great Sean Rooks, has continued to develop and has made himself into a potential high-major prospect. UCLA has been recruiting him. Not ranked nationaly.
With the way it most likely could play out, UCLA could have another five-man class in 2014. Of course, there will be many 2014 prospects that come onto the scene in the next few years, but here's a list of the guys who have already made it clear they're guys UCLA will probably be targeting.
Parker Jackson-Cartwright, 5-7 point guard, Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola. Extremely talented, and so much so he makes up for his size. Plus he's only going to be a sophomore and there's a chance he could still grow. Based on the talent he's shown already, UCLA has offered him, and the Bruins are the early, clear favorite.
Stanley Johnson, 6-5 small forward, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei. A well-built player with skills, Johnson is considered one of the best wings in the west for 2014. UCLA has already offered him.
Isaiah Bailey, 6-4 shooting guard, Compton (Calif.) High. One of the most talented for 2014 already, Bailey is already getting recruiting attention.
Chris Sandifer, 6-2 shooting guard, Los Angeles (Calif.) Price. A lefty with a smooth stroke and good athleticism. One of the top prospects in 2014 in the west. Attended UCLA's camp.
Namon Wright, 6-3 shooting guard, West Hollywood (Calif.) Pacific Hills. Good-looking young wing with skills and a good game sense. Attended UCLA's camp.
Rashad Jackson, 6-1 shooting guard, Bakersfield (Calif.) Garces. Good athleticism and skills, one to watch. Attended UCLA's camp.
Taelin Webb, 5-10 point guard, (School TBD). Quick point guard who is very difficult to guard. Could develop into a good one for 2014. Attended UCLA's camp.
Isaiah Whitehead, 6-4 shooting guard, Brooklyn (New York) Lincoln. UCLA saw him in AAU ball and is recruiting him. A very good shooter and can get to the rim.
There is no way to foresee who will be all the guys UCLA will recruit for 2015 – players who will be incoming high school freshmen. But there are already a couple of guys who it's very easy to project as potential targets, they're that good. Even though it's early, the 2015 class has the chance to be one of the best in the west in quite a while.
Stephen Zimmerman, 6-9 center, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman. Easily the best young center prospect in the west since Kevin Love, Zimmerman is a bit of a freak, being very tall and lanky but coordinated, and with basketball skills. If you project out just average development, he should be one of the best in the country for 2015. UCLA has already offered him, and he comes from a Bruin family. If Shabazz Muhammad commits to UCLA that wouldn't hurt, with the Bishop Gorman and the Dream Vision connection.
Aaron Holiday, 5-11 point guard, North Hollywood (Calif.) Campbell Hall. The little brother of Jrue Holiday, he's very much a play-a-like of his older brother, and very talented. It's well known that the Holidays and Howland didn't exactly see eye-to-eye, and you'd have to think that could be a factor in Holiday's recruitment.
Chance Comanche, 6-6 power forward, Playa Del Rey (Calif.) St. Bernard. A Tayshaun Prince type, but has huge feet and will probably grow. Very good skills for his size and age. Will combine with Jones to make one of the best tandems in SoCal over the next four years. He attended UCLA's camp.