Quick Hoops Recruiting Update

SEP. 23 -- UCLA's coaches have been out in force conducting in-home visits over the last week and change...

With the fall recruiting period in full swing, UCLA coaches have been out in force visiting prospects across the country and locally. Probably the most significant news since our last update was the commitment of Jean Marc-Christ Koumadje to Florida State. Koumadje was one of the few remaining post targets on the board for the Bruins, and his commitment makes it even more critical that UCLA land one or more of Stephen Zimmerman, Carlton Bragg, Ivan Rabb, or Caleb Swanigan.

The board, as it stands right now, looks like this:

Posts
Stephen Zimmerman
Carlton Bragg
Ivan Rabb
Caleb Swanigan

Guards/Wings
Jaylen Brown
Brandon Ingram
Brandon Sampson

Today, Steve Alford will visit Jaylen Brown, and it can’t be understated how critical Brown is to the success of UCLA’s 2015 class. Brown is such an elite talent that the hope is that his commitment would push other prospects, like Bragg, to jump on board as well. Brown was thought to be a UCLA lean over the summer, and there was some talk that he could commit by the middle of August, but it now looks much more likely that he’ll sign in the spring.

Later this week, Alford will also visit Bragg and Ingram. Given the loss of Jonah Bolden for the year, which means he won’t get the game reps and experience you’d want him to receive this year, it’s even more important to grab an early-impact power forward. Bragg could fit the bill, and there’ some noise that he and Brown are close enough that they could influence each others’ decisions. We’re skeptical of that, though. UCLA visited both Ingram and Bragg last week as well, and the visits reportedly went very well. Ingram and Stephen Zimmerman are both scheduled to visit UCLA on October 24th.

2016 & 2017 news

UCLA visited 2016 Santa Monica High guard Jonah Matthews, the son of former UCLA assistant Phil Matthews, this past weekend. The Bruins have yet to offer him, but the thinking is that UCLA could leap to the forefront of his recruitment if they offer. UCLA also stopped in at Windward to check out Marques Johnson’s son Cyrus, who’s about 6’4 as a freshman, and Shaquille O’Neal’s son Shareef. Shareef O’Neal is already a 6’6 freshman.

The Bruins offered 2016 center prospect Zach Collins last week. Collins is a 6’9 teammate of Stephen Zimmerman and Chase Jeter at Bishop Gorman who already has offers from Arizona, California, Iowa, San Diego State, UNLV, USC, Washington, and more.

UCLA is visiting Napa (Calif.) Prolific Prep’s Josh Jackson, the No. 2 small forward in the country in 2016, today. Jackson recently moved to the West Coast, which could help to elevate UCLA in his recruitment. So far, Michigan, Michigan State, Kansas, Auburn, and Ohio State have been the significant factors in his recruitment.

Yesterday, assistant coach Ed Schilling visited Indiana and saw multiple prospects while in-state. He stopped in to see Joey Brunk, the 2016 power forward who Schilling coached in high school. The current thinking is that Brunk will stay close to home,with both Michigan State and Xavier on him hard. He also visited with 2017 guard Paul Scruggs and 2017 forward Jaren Jackson, both of whom could be big-time prospects in that class with more development. Both are in the nascent stages of recruiting, so UCLA will kick the tires.

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