UCLA Prospects in Top 100

Thomas Welsh had one of the biggest leaps of any player to get up to five-star status, and he's joined in UCLA's 2014 class by two other five-stars...

The first full class for Steve Alford at UCLA is a very highly-rated one, and with three five-star prospects in the front court, UCLA's strength over the next year should be its big men.

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, is skilled in the mid-range, and is a very good rebounder with length. Not an elite athlete, Looney has a very good motor which allows him to hit the boards with tenacity, though his lack of physical strength and 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 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. While he has some physical talent, he is still a bit too raw to earn a higher ranking.


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