September 5, 2012 |
When training camp opens next month, Greg Somogyi will hold one distinction not even All-Star big men Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol can match: tallest Laker. How long the 7-foot-3 center graces the Lakers' roster is another matter. The Lakers signed the former UC Santa Barbara player to a non-guaranteed contract Wednesday and extended an invitation to training camp as the team fills out the margins of its roster for practice purposes. Like former UCLA forward Reeves Nelson, whom the Lakers also signed as expected Wednesday, Somogyi is the longest of longshots to make the team.
November 11, 2010 |
It was almost impossible not to look. At some point during games at Pauley Pavilion, UCLA players would gaze behind the Bruins' bench in hopes of catching a glimpse of the man sitting in Section 103B, Row 2, Seat 1. That was the spot reserved for John Wooden , a constant presence until his health deteriorated in recent years. "I definitely looked at him when he was at the games," junior guard Jerime Anderson said. "It's hard not to notice that Coach Wooden is there.
February 29, 2012 |
UCLA Coach Ben Howland reiterated that he has “made mistakes, along the way,” in judging the abilities and character of players during recruiting in recent seasons. But he said that was “surprised by the assertions” in a Sports Illustrated story that portrayed his program as out of control. “Some [of the instances] I had no knowledge about, some were taken out of context and some were not true,” Howland said. As to whether he expected to return as UCLA's coach, Howland said he and Athletic Director Dan Guerrero meet every year to “talk about our strengths and weaknesses and what we need to get better at. … I am very confident that I will lead this program lead in the future.” The story cited instances in which former UCLA forward Reeves Nelson intentionally went after teammates during practice without repercussions from Howland.
December 19, 2010 |
It's doubtful any UCLA player is going to tweet or text "We're No. 109!" in response to the Bruins' latest Ratings Percentage Index figure. But it's a considerable upgrade over their RPI of 182 before an 86-79 victory over No. 16 Brigham Young on Saturday in the Wooden Classic gave them a long-awaited signature triumph. "It's a really big win," junior guard Lazeric Jones said after the Bruins notched their first victory over a ranked team since defeating No. 22 Washington on Feb. 19, 2009.
November 13, 2009 |
Defense has always ranked among Ben Howland's favorite topics, so it makes sense to hear the UCLA coach talk about double teams and help-side rotation leading up to the season opener. "We're still having a problem defending the dribble," he said Thursday after watching film of a recent victory over Humboldt State. "There were a number of times we were getting beat off dribble penetration." This is a young team that has yet to adopt Howland's trademark pressure defense. He expressed concern about an athletic Cal State Fullerton visiting Pauley Pavilion on Monday night.
March 3, 2010 |
There was a different look to UCLA guard Malcolm Lee's game Saturday. Freed mostly from the chore of being the Bruins' point guard, Lee had a flow to his game. It was reflected in his 18-point performance in a 70-68 loss to Oregon. "I think he scores better from that position because he does not have to worry so much about running the team," Coach Ben Howland said. Lee made eight of 14 shots. He scored 10 of the Bruins' last 12 points of the first half to keep a bad situation from becoming worse.
November 9, 2010 |
Like the home court being renovated around them, the UCLA Bruins are far from a finished product. But Coach Ben Howland proclaimed himself excited about his team after an 84-59 exhibition victory over Cal State Los Angeles on Tuesday night at Pauley Pavilion. "This is a young team," Howland said, "but I'm encouraged. " The injury-plagued Bruins made the most of their eight available scholarship players, with sophomore Tyler Honeycutt getting 15 points and 15 rebounds and freshman guard Tyler Lamb adding a game-high 17 points off the bench.
December 1, 2010 |
Playing Kansas can feel like getting poked in the eye without knowing what hit you. Reeves Nelson knows this all too well. A year after being struck in the right eye by a stray finger, the UCLA forward still doesn't know whether the culprit was Marcus Morris or his twin brother, Markieff. "They're identical and you couldn't really see the [jersey] number on the tape," said Nelson, who returned to the Bruins' 73-61 loss to the Jayhawks last December at Pauley Pavilion even after his eye had swollen shut.
October 28, 2011 |
Playing basketball away from Pauley Pavilion shouldn't keep UCLA from making itself at home wherever it goes in the Pacific 12 Conference. At least that was the assessment of conference media members who picked the Bruins to win the Pac-12 title in a close race with California and Arizona. UCLA, which will play most of its home games at the Sports Arena this season while its permanent home receives a makeover, received 14 first-place votes to Cal's 13 and Arizona's 11. "It doesn't help us win one game," Bruins Coach Ben Howland said Friday at L.A. Live during Pac-12 media day. "All it does is make the bull's-eye even bigger, and you've already got the bull's-eye because you have those four letters on your chest.
January 28, 2011 |
UCLA might want to add ear plugs to its travel checklist the next time it hits the road. The Bruins continue to have problems tuning out opposing fans, their latest issues surfacing Thursday night during an 85-74 loss to Arizona. UCLA Coach Ben Howland said several players responded to what he called inappropriate remarks made by Wildcats fans. "All they're trying to do is to get you to react to it, so it's actually serving what someone in the crowd tries to do," Howland said Friday.