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The premium message boards of Bruin Report Online are where quite a bit of news breaks -- from not only writers on this site but from the site's subscribers.

This feature -- the "Message Board News" -- enables you to quickly get the lowdown on the latest news from the message boards!

8/3

I wouldn't want to jinx this, but I'm hearing from a source close to the situation that UCLA has moved ahead for Kevin Love, the elite 6-9 junior from Lake Oswego (Calif.) High.

It's a combination of many things: the Loves having always liked UCLA, having many family and friends in SoCal, the program's tradition, the personnel currently in it, and the school's academics; the fact that it's far closer to their home in Oregon than Duke or North Carolina and the family in Oregon would be able to watch him play more often, and the Loves' admiration for Ben Howland.

In fact, what I've heard is that Ben Howland has been outworking everyone for Love, taking on Love's recruitment personally.

Of course, it's still early, since Love is going to be a junior, and so much can change. As of now, North Carolina hasn't offered Love, and if they did that move simply might change things.

But as of now, it's pretty certain that UCLA is doing very well with Love.i>-- Tracy Pierson

8/2

I just spoke with Deon's high school coach. He now has offers from North Carolina and Wake Forest, along with the others previously mentioned.

The plan right now is for Deon to take official visits in September and October. They'll likely be spaced out a bit, since several of the schools are far away and there will be significant travel time.

Thompson will probably sit down with his mom and coaches this week and figure out where he wants to visit. -- Greg Hicks

7/27

OLB Bruce Davis had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee last Friday to remove a small piece of loose meniscus (cartilage). He is expected to be ready for the first day of practice on August 8.

7/26

Luke Babbitt, the 6-7 sophomore forward from Reno (Nev.) Galena, became a nationally-known prospect in Vegas this week.

Here's the write-up that Hicks provided on A game Babbitt had against national competition (Babbitt)

Babbitt told Jeff Goodman that, at this point, his early list of schools includes UCLA, USC, Washington, Cal and Michigan.

He'll be a high major player, and probably a youngster that UCLA could offer fairly early.

7/26

We've heard that UCLA is still involved with the foreign player whose name I can't release.

He is a 6-9 skilled post and, from what I know, would come in the 2006 class.

7/20

Darrell Arthur, the 6-9 post from Dallas (Tex.) South Oak Cliff, is currently the #7-ranked player in the country.

Arthur is very talented, and if there wasn't a new age requirement for the NBA, would be among those in the 2006 class that would seriously contemplate putting his name in the NBA draft next June.

But he'll now go to school because of the new rule.

It's believed that Texas and KU have been the leaders. However, Texas has a commitment from Kevin Durant, who is a similar player to Arthur, and KU has a similar guy in Micah Downs, who will be a freshman this fall.

From what I've heard recently, Arthur is fairly open and UCLA has inquired. It's a longshot that the Bruins would have a chance, but UCLA is gauging interest from Arthur.

7/20

UCLA faced off against a JC football team in an informal 7-on-7. Get a review of the game here.

7/19 Sources are indicating that UCLA is doing very well with Kevin Love, the 6-9 junior center from Lake Oswego (Oreg.) High.

We're hearing that Love really likes UCLA, likes Howland, likes the school and the program, and has family in SoCal, as we know.

I'm told that UCLA could be among a very short list of favorites at this point for him, and has a very realistic chance of getting him.

7/16

Greg Hicks reports from the West Coast All-Star Camp second session that Richmond (CA) High School junior-to-be center Elijah Holman is a high major prospect with a chance to be elite.

His high school team wasn't much last season (11-12; 5-7 in league play), but they do play in Division I. It won't hurt the UCLA chances if he remains part of the Adidas and Pump Brothers system (and this is their camp) for AAU basketball.

West Coast All-Star Camp and Elijah Holman-- PHS1

7/8

He's Samson Szakacsy, a 6-4, 200-pounder from Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure.

Szakacsy stepped into the starting role for St. Bonaventure a few games into the season last year, and improved and gained confidence by the end of the season.

He then tested really well this spring at various combines, showing off a very good athleticism for his size.

Then in passing leagues this spring and summer he has continued to improve.

Many college coaches went by St. Bonaventure this spring and saw Szakacsy, and were impressed, including UCLA.

The Pac-10 will be all for him, I believe. And I think he has a chance to be mentioned among the few best quarterbacks in the 2007 class in the west.

And here's the great news: His dad is a UCLA grad and has been in contact with the UCLA football staff.

7/2

Garrett Green, the 6-2, 190-pound quarterback/athlete from Sherman Oaks (Calif.) Notre Dame, came by the football camp Wednesday.

He didn't participate, but did talk with the UCLA coaches.

UCLA hasn't offered Garrett, but I suspect they could be considering it seriously.

6/29

Brandon Jennings, the 6-0 point guard in the 2008 class from Compton (Calif.) Dominguez, visited campus today, meeting with the coaches.

6/28

The Beyond 2000 camp took place this last weekend in Thousand Oaks and Woodland Hills.

Prospects like Darian Hagan, David Ausberry and A.J. Simmons were there.

A quick report from a scout in attendance had Tyquan Knox, the wide receiver from Crenshaw, as one of the best prospects there. In fact, he was so impressive, this scout considers him one of the best 25 players in California and among the top 3-5 receivers.

Knox hasn't played much football, and hasn't lifted weights, but has a good body at about 6-0 and 180ish. He was considered the best receiver at the Nike Camp in Palo Alto, with such other notables as Ausberry, Rickey Thernarse and DeLaShaun Dean competing at that camp.

The question on Knox has been his speed, running a 4.7 at the Nike Camp. But this scout feels that Knox, without any training in running and having never lifted weights, will get much faster, and already has. He said that he was running away from Hagan and other players at the Beyond 200.

And here's the good UCLA-related news. Knox wants to be a Bruin. It's his childhood favorite and where he wants to go. UCLA is recruiting him and while his grades aren't bad, even Knox admitted that he should improve his GPA, and wants to do it specifically to get into UCLA.

6/24

I've heard that Kevin Love, the 6-9 center in the 2007 class from Lake Oswego (Ore.) and a top ten national prospect, will take an unofficial visit to UCLA in August.

-- Tracy Pierson

6/22

James Keefe, the 6-8 power forward from Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita, the junior committed to UCLA, will play with his high school team this summer, according to his family.

While that might not seem like big news, it is a relatively interesting decision, given Keefe's situation.

Keefe was widely considered a top 25 national player in the class of 2006 heading into spring.

He played with the So Cal All-Stars this spring, and Keefe started off fairly well with them in April.

But a few tournaments into the spring, SCA started to get a bit selfish, and Keefe didn't mesh particularly well in that style of play.

His stock with national scouts fell some as a result.

Now, James had previously planned to play with his high school team for the summer and not SCA, because he felt he didn't need the exposure on the higher-profile AAU team, since he was already committed to UCLA.

But now that his stock has fallen a bit, there were some other issues weighing in the balance. For one, being a McDonald's All-American. Now, James will play in the NBA Players Camp and a shoe company camp, and he'll still be able to prove himself to national scouts in those environments. But it would have helped him to play with SCA, or another high-profile AAU team, in July, also, if he wanted to take his best shot at being named to the McDonald's All-American team.

But I just received word that James has decided to stick with his plan, and play with his high school team in July. James told his father about playing with Santa Margarita this summer: "If I don't play we will get killed in Vegas. I can't do that."

Now, Mr. Keefe told me this in a private e-mail without the intention of getting it publicized, and I considered not putting it up on the board.

But I then thought it just was too good at illustrating the type of kid UCLA is getting in James Keefe.

Greg and I talk about this all the time -- that there are plenty of talented players out there. But you not only need talented players, but kids that put their personal accomplishments behind wanting their team to win. Keefe is a great example of the type of kid UCLA needs to continue to get.

And by the way, Greg Hicks and Frank Burlison were both at the Mater Dei tournament this last weekend, and they said that Keefe played very, very well with Santa Margarita, and that it's preposterous that anyone would base their opinion of his game on SCA's spring.

6/18

As you all saw from the photo galleries on WeAReSC.com, Jake Dean, UCLA's committed offensive lineman, went to the recent USC camp but didn't participate.

Of course, that caused some consternation here on the message boards.

Jake e-mailed me and said this:

"I was there watching my teammate, Cory Yirate, and helping him in the one-on-ones. I am 100% committed to UCLA. You can't beat living in Westwood. I was recently offered by the University of Colorado. But I'm still solid with UCLA."

6/14

UCLA had its "Pro Day" on campus, when NFL scouts come to evaluate UCLA players.

According to reports, Junior Taylor looked good, running a 40 in the low 4.4s.

Maurice Drew ran in the high 4.4s.

Brandon Breazell ran in the high 4.4s, as did Matt Slater. Rodney Van, from what I heard, ran in the low 4.5s.

Apparently, defensive end Justin Hickman showed well, running a 4.7ish 40.

Spencer Havner reportedly ran in the 4.6 range.

6/12

Chase Budinger, the 6-7 junior small forward from Encinitas (Calif.) La Costa Canyon, did not take an official visit to Arizona last weekend, as had been the rumor.

Budinger did visit UCLA the weekend of June 4-5, along with his friend and AAU teammate, UCLA commit James Keefe.

Budinger, who has blown up to be a top 20 national prospect, has indicated he'll visit Arizona in the fall, and take an unofficial visit to USC. He said recently he has narrowed it down to those three schools.

6/10

UCLA's summer session "A" starts Monday, June 27th.

To my knowledge, all of UCLA's incoming basketball freshmen are supposed to be enrolled for that session.

You'd think they'd be in town at least the weekend before that, which is June 24-26.

The Say No League, if it starts the same weekend it did last year, would start June 17th.

So, speculating, the freshmen should possibly be able to play at least in the Say No the weekend of the 24-26.

Also, with UCLA's camp being the last few days of the month, the incoming freshmen will be on campus, and could be around during that time.

So, hopefully we'll have a chance to see all the incoming freshmen a few times by the end of this month.

Chad Moline, the 6-0, 225-pound linebacker from Saddleback College, will enroll at UCLA this fall.

Moline was named to the Mission Conference National Division first-team.

He is, of course, the older brother of UCLA signee, DT Chase Moline, and UCLA recruiting target, current Mission Viejo junior Chane Moline.

6/7

PAC-10 ADOPTS NINE-GAME CONFERENCE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE AND EXPANDS MEN'S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT TO 10 TEAMS

WALNUT CREEK, Calif.--The adoption of a nine-game Conference football schedule beginning in 2006 when the overall college season increases to 12 regular season games and the expansion of the Men's Basketball Tournament from eight to 10 teams highlighted the actions taken at the Pac-10 annual summer meetings just concluded in Portland, Oregon.

Pac-10 Chief Executive Officers approved the implementation of a full round-robin Conference football schedule starting in 2006. Each Pac-10 team will play nine Conference games and three non-conference games. It is the first time the Conference has had a full round-robin schedule in football since 1977.

The Conference approved a recommendation of the men's basketball coaches and Directors of Athletics to expand the Pacific Life Pac-10 Men's Basketball Tournament from eight to 10 teams beginning with the 2006 tournament at Staples Center in Los Angeles. It will require expanding the event from three to four days. The winner of the tournament receives the Conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

The Conference also voted to experiment with instant replay in football during the 2005 season. The Pac-10 will adopt a system similar to the one that was successfully implemented by the Big Ten Conference last season. Instant replay will be utilized in all Conference games and in non-conference games hosted by Pac-10 members if agreed to by the visiting institution.

The Conference adopted the recommendation of the Pac-10 Compliance and Enforcement Committee that Arizona State be placed on probation for a period of two years as a result of violations involving extra benefits received by a former football student-athlete from a former member of the institution's compliance staff. The Committee commended Arizona State for its quick response to the violations and the level of cooperation it extended during the investigation, noting the institution implemented rigorous corrective actions to avoid future violations and terminated the employment of the former member of the compliance staff involved in the violations.

6/6

I've heard that USC could be a bigger player in the sweepstakes for Chase Budinger, the 6-7 small forward from La Costa Canyon, than everyone suspects.

Chase's father is a USC grad, and from what I've heard, Tim Floyd is recruiting Chase and his father very aggressively.

If you're Tim Floyd, you would sell the new arena, Chase being the guy they would build the program around, and then the angle that Floyd knows the NBA.

With the success Budinger has had this spring (being named the MVP of the TOC is pretty huge), there is naturally some crazy talk about Budinger going to the NBA early, even out of high school, from certain circles.

So, Floyd talking up his NBA connections could play right into that.

6/4

I did receive the tape of the All-Canadian Game, featuring committed UCLA post player, Ryan Wright, over the weekend.

Thank you, UpNorth, for the tape.

Trying to evaluate from tape is more difficult than seeing him in person, but this game also had its advantages over a tape of Wright's high school games since it was against considerably better competition.

Wright definitely held his own and did very well, in fact.

He looks to be a little taller, now a legit 6-8 and maybe 6-8 1/2. He says he's 230, and if he is, that's a great sign, because even though he is muscular he's still thin and looks like he could put on 25 more pounds.

His athleticism is very apparent, getting up well for rebounds and throwing down some put-backs.

What was evident was that Wright's skills have definitely improved. He made a 15-foot jump shot and a very nice turn-around jump hook from about 7 feet. He did throw up one brick, but overall it's clear that his skills have developed.

If I had to come up with a criticism, I'd say that he still looks to be learning how to play, and that he doesn't have an elite-type of natural feel for the game. it's not bad, and you can see it's definitely improving, though.

It's going to be very fun to watch him develop at UCLA. Among the incoming freshmen, you'd have to say that he and Darren Collison probably have the most potential for development, with Wright physically still looking very young, and still at the beginning of the curve in learning how to play.-- Tracy Pierson


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