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UCLA may have found its replacement for Adem Bona in transfer William Kyle III

South Dakota State's William Kyle III holds the ball under pressure from Iowa State's Demarion Watson
Center William Kyle III (42) is transferring from South Dakota State to UCLA and is likely to be the Bruins’ primary post player.
(Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press)
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UCLA now has enough transfers to fill out a starting lineup. Go ahead and pencil in its latest as the center who will walk to midcourt for the opening tip.

William Kyle III, who starred as a defensive menace for South Dakota State, will likely replace Adem Bona as the Bruins’ primary post player after verbally committing Wednesday on social media after taking an official visit earlier this week.

“BRUIN NATION LETS WORK,” Kyle tweeted alongside a bear emoji as well as blue and gold hearts.

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The reigning Summit League defensive player of the year, Kyle blocked 1.6 shots per game last season while averaging 13.1 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.7 assists. He shot a league-best 62.3% on the way to being selected first-team all-conference.

Tyler Bilodeau, a gifted scorer who flourished last season for Oregon State, announced on social media he was committed to the Bruins.

April 20, 2024

A 6-foot-9 sophomore, Kyle has two seasons of eligibility remaining and will presumably split time with returning center Aday Mara.

Kyle becomes the fifth transfer to become a Bruin, joining small forward Kobe Johnson (formerly of USC), combo guard Skyy Clark (Louisville) and power forwards Eric Dailey Jr. (Oklahoma State) and Tyler Bilodeau (Oregon State). All five players averaged double figures in scoring at their previous stops, significantly bolstering a UCLA offense that staggered for much of last season.

Recruiting website 247Sports.com had ranked the Bruins’ transfer class No. 3 nationally before Kyle’s commitment, trailing only Indiana and Kansas. It’s conceivable that UCLA’s starting lineup next season could feature four transfers alongside returning point guard Dylan Andrews.

With Kyle joining the roster, UCLA currently has no open scholarships but is believed to be pursuing sharpshooter Dominick Harris, who entered the transfer portal after making 44.8% of his three-pointers last season for Loyola Marymount. The Bruins would need an additional scholarship to become available to land Harris.

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