UCLA continued its pipeline to the Compton Magic grassroots program on Thursday as talented five-star forward T.J. Leaf committed to the Bruins during a televised announcement.
The 6-foot-10 Leaf becomes the third member of UCLA’s Class of 2016 to come from the Magic and two more Class of 2017 UCLA commitments are also from the storied AAU program.
A former Arizona commit, Leaf is a very skilled forward who can hit jumpers from all over and also put the ball on the floor a little bit. Regarded as the No. 15 overall prospect in the national class, Leaf picked UCLA over his other finalists of Oregon and San Diego State.
During 12 games with the Magic this spring and summer, Leaf averaged 21 points and 10.6 rebounds per game. Leaf joins five-star point guard Lonzo Ball, four-star big man Ike Anigbogu and three-star guard Kobe Paras in the Bruins’ Class of 2016.
Since opening up his recruitment from Arizona last month, five-star forward T.J. Leaf has been one of the hottest recruiting names in the country. The skilled forward can hit shot all the way out the perimeter, but he’s also athletic enough to finish above the rim.
The 6-foot-10 forward from El Cajon, California is a potential All-American candidate this spring. Here’s a new mixtape of him from Courtside Films.
Just days after announcing that he was de-committing from Arizona, five-star 2016 forward T.J. Leaf is focusing on eight schools. The news was announced by the Compton Magic grassroots program that Leaf plays for.
The eight schools (in no particular order according to the announcement) under consideration are Kentucky, Kansas, UCLA, Texas, California, San Diego State, Gonzaga and Indiana.
Leaf had an eventful summer on the court, beginning with some good play for the Magic on the adidas Uprising circuit. Leaf tried out for the United States U19 team but did not make the cut for a squad that would go on to win gold at the FIBA U19 World Championships under Arizona head coach Sean Miller’s tutelage. The team is selected by a committee led by Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim.
Leaf went on to represent Israel at the FIBA U18 European Championships, where he emerged as one of the top players in the tournament.
Leaf’s list includes some of the nation’s top programs, with many in positions of need when it comes to their front court rotation in 2016. Kentucky seemingly reloads every season, and each of the other teams on the list has at least one contributing senior who will be out of eligibility when the 2015-16 season concludes.