Kevon Looney, the 6-foot-8 power forward from Milwaukee Hamilton, gave UCLA a treat and five other schools a trick on Halloween.
In a press conference delayed two hours by some school bureaucracy, Looney picked UCLA over Duke, Florida, Michigan State, Tennessee and Wisconsin. According to Rob Hernandez, UCLA edged out Tennessee in the final analysis.
“California was a great place, UCLA was a great campus, the most beautiful campus I’ve ever seen,” Looney says in the above video. “Coach [Steve] Alford, great coach. On the visit, I seen their team, I seen how they bought in to the system, him being new there. They got a great style of play out there, I can fit in. I like his vision he had for me.”
The No. 13-ranked player in the Class of 2014 by Rivals, Looney figures to be an impact player for the Bruins.
He joins a class that includes Sagemont (FL) School center Gyorgy Goloman, who committed earlier this week.
“I’ll bring a versatile player,” Looney told SNY.tv earlier this month. “I think I can score the ball. I’ve become a much better shooter. I’m getting stronger. I can defend multiple positions. And I’m a great rebounder.”
Longtime New York recruiting expert Tom Konchalski saw Looney this summer at the NBA Top 100 Camp and came away impressed with Looney’s desire to help his team more than to showcase his perimeter skills.
“He was more about winning the game for his team,” he said. “So his team needed him to play more inside and that’s what he did. He rebounded extremely well. He scored off the offensive glass extremely effectively. And at times he showed perimeter skills. At times he would handle the ball on the perimeter and hit a couple of 3’s.
“But he’s about winning, he’s about the team. He’s about doing what his team needs in order to win the game. He’s gotta get stronger. He has the length and the size of a 4 man, but right now he has the slender frame of a perimeter player. But he’s a competitor and he plays the game to win.”
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.