November 9th the season will begin. The uncertainty still clouds the program as both Shabazz Muhammad and Kyle Anderson have yet to be cleared by the NCAA. One of the reason that this is a little disconcerting is because Kentucky's newest substantial talent Nerlens Noel was cleared about a week ago. So why hasn't the NCAA cleared the two Bruins stars yet?
I think Noel and Shabazz's investigation started at about the same time and yet it doesn't seem that the NCAA has gotten any closer to an actual decision on Shabazz. I want to think that the NCAA is just making sure that they can clear both at the same time to give Bruin fans an early Christmas present, but then again it could be that they continue to find things that are somewhat iffy in the eyes of the NCAA.
The Bruins need to have a good year to save coach Howland and keep UCLA on the progression back towards national title contenders. With this dark shadow being cast over the whole program, I assume that it is probably hurting the recruiting of future athletes. Kentucky got the clearance from the NCAA on the Noel hearing and have since signed four 5-star players for the 2013 season. Coincidence? Maybe, but it still is somewhat intriguing.
More questions can be asked about the UCLA program as well. Tyler Lamb had a minor knee surgery and who knows how he is going to come back from that. Josh Smith is at least not afraid to admit that his weight is a problem, but that doesn't exactly mean he is ready to loose a bunch of weight and be out on the court for useful minutes. Oh and then there is the new point guard situation. Larry Drew is a reasonably good point guard, but I never saw anything while he was at North Carolina that made me believe he could lead a team.
With the season quickly approaching there are still many more questions than answers at this point. Of course, this is me being the obvious pessimist. That is not me though. I know that Shabazz and Anderson will both be cleared and the Bruins will be full strength from the get-go leading to at least a final four run. The NCAA and their investigations largely lead to nothing of significance and honestly they want these big time athletes on the court for their own selfish financial gains. November 9th Bruin fans! Get ready. Can I get an 8 count!Back to the UCLA Bruins Newsfeed