Thursday, June 30, 2016

Why Kobe Paras pulled out of UCLA

LOS ANGELES, California -- There's been a change of plans for Kobe Paras, one of college basketball’s most high profile, highly anticipated recruits: He will no longer be a UCLA Bruin.

The University of California in Los Angeles announced the withdrawal of 18-year-old Filipino on Wednesday morning.

In a statement, the school said: “Incoming freshman guard Kobe Paras, admitted upon condition to UCLA, has withdrawn from the university due to academic conditions of his admission not being met."

But his coaches at Middlebrooks Academy said he is academically eligible to play for an NCAA Division 1 program.

The Los Angeles Times quoted Cathedral High School officials as saying that there was an issue with Paras's Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) score, despite being a consistent honor student.

Paras had verbally committed to UCLA in the fall of 2014 as a high school junior. He went on to have a phenomenal junior season attracting fandom at many of his games as a player for Cathedral High School.

He went on to participate in several high-profile camps.

Due to an issue in his transfer and credit this past school year, Paras suited up for the Middlebrooks Academy, a basketball prep program that is also run by Cathedral's coach William Middlebrooks.

Last February, Cathedral High School announced that Paras had scored 1750 on his SAT, which is regarded as a high score.

However, the average incoming UCLA freshman has a score of 2064.

The withdrawal comes just weeks after Paras checked in on campus with the school, tweeting his visits and his locker room nameplate. He even had a chance to meet his fellow class of 2016 recruits during his visit.

“The issue is SAT. Based on UCLA’s standards and his announced score, he fell below the UCLA average,” coach William Middlebrooks said.

Although Paras is no longer UCLA-bound, his coaches said he will still play college basketball at a Division 1 level. According to reports, some schools have already contacted his coaches.

Just as when he first arrived in LA, they expect a number of suitors lining up to bring in the 6-foot-5 wing player.

Paras himself has been silent throughout the ordeal with Middlebrooks basketball requesting for privacy.

The program said they will clarify the issues and details surrounding the young athlete's withdrawal soon.

No matter where Paras will eventually play, that school will have a well-conditioned athlete. The hoops phenom has been in tip top basketball shape, spending most of his time in the gym and getting ready for the next phase of his basketball life.