Interesting tidbit in this report about how NBA great Tony Parker was almost a Bruin! It would've been amazing to have had Tony Parker playing in the Blue and Gold...
Instead of a high school in the Western Suburbs, Tony was able to attend the prestigious National Institute of Sport in Paris. While other kids rode the bus on snowy days to get to school, Parker was living on his own in one of the world's great cities, best friend Boris Diaw at his side.
Looking at it from that perspective, it's easy to see why Parker passed on American high school basketball.
"I was on a campus having a good time," he said. "I almost went to college. I was that close to going to UCLA. At the last moment I changed my mind and I stayed playing professional in Paris."
Tony Parker entered the league in 2001. If Tony played just 2 years at UCLA (reasonable prediction), he woulda played at UCLA from '99-'01 during the dark Lavin years. He woulda been battling with Earl Watson for the starting PG spot and woulda been playing with Matt Barnes, Kapono, Ray Young, Dan Gadzuric and TJ Cummings.
Maybe Tony Parker coulda gotten Lavin out of the Sweet Sixteen... then again, maybe in that case UCLA wouldn't have canned Lavin and snagged Howland. In that case, thank Goodness we didn't get Mr. Parker!!!