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UCLA BASKETBALL

UCLA basketball's David and Travis Wear have versatility in common

Sophomore twins can shoot three-pointers or take on opponents' under the basket. David Wear is expected to create mismatches at small forward, while Travis Wear will bolster deep frontcourt.

November 01, 2011|By Ben Bolch
  • Before taking their talents to UCLA, Travis, left, and David Wear were standouts at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana.
Before taking their talents to UCLA, Travis, left, and David Wear were standouts… (Christine Cotter / Los Angeles…)

Not everything about them is identical.

David Wear is expected play a lot this season at small forward, creating a mismatch against smaller counterparts with his 6-foot-10 frame.

Travis Wear will spend his time at power forward and center, bolstering one of the deepest frontcourts in the country.

The sophomore twins' versatility could pose twice the challenge for UCLA's opponents. Both can step outside and shoot three-pointers or take on 7-footers underneath the basket.

"I think they are going to be really, really good," North Carolina's Roy Williams, who coached the Wears during the 2009-10 season before they transferred to UCLA, said last spring in an interview with The Times. "If they had been here, they would have played 45 minutes [per game] between the two of them at least this year."

Although David Wear's natural position is power forward, the Bruins will use him mostly at small forward because they are thin at that position after Tyler Honeycutt's early departure to the NBA.

David Wear said he was up for the challenge of defending smaller, quicker players.

"I played the three when I was at Carolina," he said, "so I think I'm a little more adapted and prepared to guard the three."

UCLA Coach Ben Howland called the Wears the best-conditioned players on his team and praised David Wear as a top offensive rebounder who would probably be a starter.

"He's done maybe the best job on the team at going to the offensive glass on a consistent basis every time a shot is taken," Howland said.

Backup plan

With Jerime Anderson starting his two-game suspension Sunday, sophomore Tyler Lamb will be the backup to point guard Lazeric Jones in UCLA's exhibition game against Cal State San Bernardino at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario.

Lamb also appears to be ahead of freshman Norman Powell in the battle for the starting shooting guard position. Howland said Powell was struggling with his passing and his ability to stay in front of his man on defense.

Injury report

Howland said center Anthony Stover (shoulder) won't resume non-contact drills for 10 days to two weeks, meaning he will probably miss at least the Bruins' first two games. … Center Joshua Smith (ankle) and forward De'End Parker (concussion) have returned to practice.

ben.bolch@latimes.com

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