The UCLA men’s basketball team is preparing for a major overhaul heading into the 2021-2022 season. With the departure of Jaime Jaquez, Tyger Campbell, Amari Bailey, and David Singleton, coupled with Mac Etienne and Abramo Canka joining the NCAA transfer portal, as well as Jaylen Clark and Adem Bona declaring for the NBA draft, UCLA’s roster will look quite different next season.
UCLA head coach Mick Cronin is confident that his team can weather this transition and has already made several moves in order to make sure of it. The Bruins have added four transfers, all of whom have considerable experience and production to offer the program. The newest addition is former Virginia Tech guard Tyrece Radford, who was an All-ACC first team selection last season. He is joined by Ellis Dozier (Chattanooga), Kenneth Nwuba (Virginia), and Jon Pedersen (Purdue).
In addition, UCLA has added three freshman who will look to make an immediate impact. Mikey Williams (Playaz Basketball Club), Jimmy Kimmel (Orange Lutheran) and William Snow (Brewster Academy) have all been highly touted recruits and should be able to fill in the gaps left by the departed players.
The Bruins are also looking to make the most of their returning players. Johnny Juzang was an All-Pac 12 first team selection last season and should be the leader of the offense once again this year. UCLA will also look to Jaime Jaquez Jr., Chris Smith, Jake Kyman and Cody Riley for production.
It’s clear that there will be a lot of new faces in Westwood next season as UCLA looks to adapt and adjust to the considerable losses that they have endured. However, with a core of returning players coupled with talented transfers and freshmen, the Bruins are confident that they can make a push for their first NCAA tournament appearance since 2018.