For a while now, we’ve had a section here at Bruins Nation which we’ve appropriately called “LaVar Ball Said What?” as sort of a way to group anything related to LaVar Ball and his sons that was relevant to UCLA Bruins basketball, especially if it came out of LaVar’s mouth.
As we noted in another article today, LaVar has decided that his middle son LiAngelo Ball, who was one of the three UCLA Men’s Basketball players arrested in China last month, will not be going to school at UCLA any longer.
Apparently, LaVar, the “good” father he is, places such little value on a college education that, rather than telling his boy to buck up and do what’s necessary to stay in school and suffer the consequences for his actions in China, he has just decided that Gelo no longer needs to go to UCLA and it sounds a lot like his decision to homeschool his youngest son LaMelo.
But, since this is looking more and more like LaVar is taking his Balls and going home, we want to share some more of what LaVar has said to ESPN, mostly so we can all laugh at him.
So, let’s ask that question again (hopefully, for the last time): LaVar Ball said what?
On LiAngelo’s status as a UCLA student, LaVar Ball said:
“We are exploring other options with Gelo. He's out of there.”
On the indefinite suspension:
“I'm not sitting back and waiting. He wasn't punished this bad in China.”
“We get back over here and the consequences were even stiffer than China. So basically they're in jail here.”
On what LiAngelo is going to do now:
"I'm going to make him way better for the draft than UCLA ever could have."
"He's not transferring to another school. The plan is now to get Gelo ready for the NBA draft."
On whether he had informed the UCLA coaching staff that he is pulling LiAngelo out of school:
"I haven't told any of those guys. They didn't tell me anything, so why am I gonna tell them?"
"They had him there just to use the Ball family name. They were going to keep the best shooter on the team coming off the bench? That's like telling the Clippers back in the day not to play JJ Redick."
According to the ESPN article, after the news broke, UCLA basketball coach Steve Alford issued the following statement:
We learned today of LiAngelo Ball's intention to withdraw from UCLA. We respect the decision he and his family have made, and we wish him all the best in the future.
The ESPN article notes that LaVar said that the plan is still to have LaMelo play for UCLA in two years, but it also adds that a UCLA source has told Arash Markazi that “this is probably the end for the Ball family at the school.” The article concludes by mentioning how it is unclear if the NCAA will consider LaMelo to be eligible to play in college due to having his own shoe.