Report: NCAA Investigating UCLA Hoops Recruits
LOS ANGELES (AP) — UCLA says two of its freshmen basketball recruits have not yet received final amateurism certification from the NCAA and is disputing what it calls “misleading and inaccurate public reports” regarding its incoming class.
A Scout.com report says freshmen Kyle Anderson and Tony Parker are being investigated by the NCAA for potential basketball recruiting violations.
Freshman Shabazz Muhammad has been the subject of an ongoing NCAA investigation involving alleged improper benefits he received in his recruitment from boosters of his AAU program. The forward from Las Vegas was one of the nation’s mostly highly sought-after recruits last spring when he chose UCLA over Kentucky and Duke.
“Recently, there have been misleading and inaccurate public reports regarding the initial-eligibility certification of our men’s basketball team’s incoming class,” athletic director Dan Guerrero said in a statement Monday.
“Currently, there are two men’s basketball student-athletes who have not yet received final amateurism certification from the NCAA. UCLA will not, and cannot, endanger the privacy of our student-athletes or the confidentiality of the process by providing a more specific response at this time to these reports,” he said.
The report posted Sunday on Scout.com’s website, which cites unspecified sources close to the situation, says the NCAA is looking into allegations of violations involving Anderson and Parker. It says sources have indicated another college basketball program turned in evidence of violations in the recruitments of Muhammad, Anderson and Parker. The report said it was unknown whether UCLA was specifically named in the alleged violations.
Muhammad didn’t accompany the Bruins on their exhibition trip to China last month because of the ongoing NCAA investigation into his relationship with the AAU booster and the alleged improper acceptance of airline flights for some of his recruiting visits. The school has only said that Muhammad, his family and UCLA is working with the NCAA during the process.
Anderson and Parker were on the China trip, although Parker didn’t play because of a strained left hamstring. Anderson, a forward from Jersey City, N.J., and Parker, a center from Lithonia, Ga., were among the nation’s top recruits last spring.
“As a member of the NCAA, UCLA works closely with the national office to establish the facts and circumstances for a fair and thorough review for each of our incoming student-athlete’s academic and amateurism records,” Guerrero said.
It has been a turbulent year for UCLA’s basketball program. Last month, redshirt junior center Anthony Stover was dismissed for failing to meet NCAA eligibility requirements. In February, a Sports Illustrated report suggested the program was in disarray under coach Ben Howland, with teammates fighting and some players using drugs and alcohol.
Last December, star player Reeves Nelson was kicked off the team for bad behavior and last fall senior Jerime Anderson was suspended for two games in connection with the theft of a laptop.
UCLA missed the NCAA tournament for the second time in three years after finishing last season with a 19-14 record.
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