UCLA has joined Kentucky as one of the top two 2012 recruiting classes with the addition of top-25 prospect Tony Parker on Monday. Parker, listed at 6'9", 280-pounds will join 6'10", 305-pound Joshua Smith to help comprise one of the top frontcourts in college basketball next season. They'll be joined by the 6'10" Wear twins, David and Travis.
The rest of the recruiting class, No. 2-rated 6'6" Shabazz Muhammad, the versatile No. 5-rated, guard/forward 6'8" Kyle Anderson as well as 6'5" shooter Jordan Adams, should have the Bruins challenging for the Pac-12 title and poised to make a serious run in the NCAA tournament. They will be extremely tough to defend with the ability to score both inside and outside.
Parker had Ohio State and Georgia in his final list prior to today's decision. We rate UCLA's class now slightly ahead of Kentucky's class of No. 1-rated 6'11" Nerlens Noels, No. 13-rated 6'8" Alex Poythress, 6'5" wing Archie Goodwin (No. 15-rated) and 6'10" center Willie Cauley. Kentucky is still in the mix for 6'7" Anthony Bennett, the top rated power forward in the class. If the Wildcats sign Bennett they would leap-frog UCLA back into the No. 1 spot.
In other college basketball news, Seth Greenberg was let go as the head coach of Virginia Tech, junior guard Mark Lyons will not return to Xavier next season, Connecticut has granted releases to Michael Bradley and Roscoe Smith which will enable them to transfer and Sam Cassell Jr. signed with Maryland.
The recruiting of 7'1" Polish center Prezmek Karnowski has been heating up and we expect him to make a decision over the next few weeks. Karnowski visted Gonzaga this past weekend. Marquette, Baylor, St. Mary's and Cal are still involved while Duke and Kansas have recently expressed interest.
Follow Carl Berman on Twitter: www.twitter.com/carlberman