With point guard Aaron Holiday having already verbally committed to attend UCLA, head coach Steve Alford was in need of another guard with transfer Jon Octeus and Norman Powell both being seniors. Saturday afternoon the program landed a verbal commitment from one of the best shooting guards in the Class of 2015, as Prince Ali announced his decision to head west for college.
Ali, a four-star prospect ranked 27th in the Class of 2015 by Rivals.com, attends Sagemont School in Florida and was at one point in time a UConn commit. However in late May Ali reopened his recruitment, and his play during the summer months resulted in offers from programs such as Louisville and Maryland. During Nike EYBL play Ali averaged 20.5 points and 4.9 rebounds per game for the Southern Stampede, shooting 45 percent from the field and 38 percent from three.
As a junior at Sagemont, Ali averaged 20 points and six rebounds per game on a team that finished the year with a Florida Class 3A state title and a 33-0 record. For his efforts Ali was named Small School Boys Basketball Player of the Year by the Sun-Sentinel.
With Ali on board UCLA still has a couple spots to fill recruiting-wise, with 2015 small forward Jaylen Brown and big man Carlton Bragg being two of the players they’re actively recruiting at the point in time. Who else Alford and his staff can reel in remains to be seen, but with Holiday and Ali in tow UCLA’s off to a solid start.