UCLA Hoops Recruiting Update

The UCLA coaches are out around the country this week checking in on various prospects, especially the elite 6-8 center from Georgia, Tony Parker, trying to sew up a verbal commmitment from him...

UCLA basketball coaches are out across the country checking in on recruits.

This week we've heard that Head Coach Ben Howland went to see Kyle Anderson, the 6-7 point forward from Jersey City (New Jersey) St. Anthony's, the #4-ranked player in the nation who committed to UCLA two weeks ago.

Howland was then in Rockville, Maryland, at Montrose Christian High, to see standout 2013 prospect Ishmail Wainright, the 6-5 small forward. Wainright clearly has become a top priority for UCLA in the 2013 class.

The word is that Howland and assistant Korey McCray will then visit Tony Parker, the 6-8 center at Lithonia (Georgia) Miller Grove, today. Parker is the #19-ranked player in the nation and just took an official visit to UCLA this last weekend. Howland and McCray, who has known Parker for a while, will be trying to sew up a verbal commitment from the elite post player. Parker still has a plan to visit Memphis for Midnight Madness on October 14th, even though sources are saying he has essentially dropped Memphis from consideration. Parker also has an official visit planned to Duke for October 28th, and reports indicated that Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski was at Parker's house Sunday waiting for him when he returned from his UCLA visit. There is also Ohio State being considered, which Parker visited in September.

The word we're still hearing is that UCLA is leading for Parker, and the visit went a long way to making the parents feel at ease about the distance away from home. We're also hearing that Parker does, in fact, have family in the Los Angeles area – none other than former UCLA great Marques Johnson, who is related to the Parkers through marriage. It, of course, would vastly help to have a family connection in Los Angeles, especially if it's someone like Johnson who obviously knows the UCLA program and the ins and outs of college basketball.

Howland and McCray will also check in on William Goodwin, the 6-8 forward from Decatur (Georgia) Southwest Dekalb. Goodwin has a list of UCLA, Memphis, Florida and Georgia, and said he added Arizona, but Arizona isn't recruiting him.

A source also indicated that a UCLA coach will be visiting Jarnell Stokes, the 6-8 post from Memphis (Tenn.) Southwind. Stokes, the #17 player in the nation, is slated to take an official visit to hometown Tennessee this weekend after just visiting Florida this last weekend and having visited Arkansas in September. UCLA is trying to get an official visit out of him, while Connecticut is said to be in line for getting a visit.

Howland will then stop in to Las Vegas later this week to see the #1 player in the nation, Shabazz Muhammad, the 6-5 small forward from Las Vegas Bishop Gorman. Muhammad officially visited Texas A&M, and has a plan to visit Kentucky for Midnight Madness. We've also heard that there is a plan to visit his father's alma mater, USC, October 28th. Duke, also, could get an official visit. Muhammad plans to wait until spring to decide.

Everything we've continued to hear is that UCLA still leads for Muhammad.

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