One could say it is the jinx of the UCLA athletics homepage which for the last month or so has featured a picture of Tyler Lamb. Like Brendan Lane before the season, Tyler has read the writing on the wall and decided to transfer. Lamb, was obviously the tenth man in a nine man rotation and with Shabazz eligible was just not going to play. The official release states:
"We are very sad to see Tyler leave our program," Howland said. "He is a great kid, and we have really enjoyed having him play for UCLA. We fully support his decision, and we wish him all the best in the future."
Lamb entered his junior season having averaged 5.8 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game through 67 contests. Lamb had played in all 33 games (32 starts) last season as a sophomore. He played in all 34 games (two starts) as a freshman in 2010-11.
"I would like to thank the University, Coach Howland and his staff for the unparalleled opportunity to have been a part of UCLA's program," Lamb said in a statement. "However, I believe that it is in my best interest to find a new destination where I can continue to grow, both as a person and as a basketball player. I am eternally grateful to my coaches and teammates for everything they have given me, and I wish them the best going forward. I plan on enrolling in a new educational institution by next semester, and I have not yet determined my schools of interest."
While Lamb's leaving does not affect the rotation per se, it is a bad sign for a number of reasons, including:
- UCLA only has nine scholarship players. Not even enough for five on five during practice.
- He was the emergency point guard. If Drew or Anderson go down, the next point guard is a now a walk on.
- Lamb was by all accounts a good kid who worked hard.
- And worst of all this continues an alarming trend of losing players during the season.
While most will rightly focus on the last reason, I am just as concerned about the first.