Three UCLA basketball players, including the younger brother of former Bruins star Lonzo Ball, have been arrested for shoplifting in China, according to a report.
UCLA freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill are the players named in a Twitter post from ESPN’s Jeff Goodman on Tuesday afternoon. Goodman’s story cited several attempts to reach Coach Steve Alford and Ball’s controversial father, LaVar Ball.
The Bruins are in Hangzhou, China, as they prepare to play Georgia Tech in the Pac-12 China Game on Friday. UCLA will face Kentucky on Dec. 23 in the CBS Sports Classic in New Orleans.
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“We are aware of a situation involving UCLA student-athletes in Hangzhou, China.” UCLA said in a statement reported by Goodman. “The university is cooperating fully with local authorities on this matter, and we have no further comment at this time.”
Tuesday morning, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported “Local police were called to the team hotel for both UCLA and Georgia Tech on Tuesday morning to investigate an unknown matter.”
The AJC reported that three Georgia Tech players were questioned and cleared, citing a statement from Georgia Tech.
“Police inspected the UCLA team bus’ cargo compartment as players on the bus waited to go to practice,” the AJC report said. “After a lengthy delay, players eventually got off the bus and returned to the hotel. Additional police vehicles arrived at the hotel around 11:40 a.m. local time.”
Ball, a 6-foot-6 small forward, is the younger son of controversial basketball parent LaVar Ball. His brother starred for the Bruins last year and is now an L.A. Laker. Ball, Riley and Hill are part of a top-10 recruiting class for the Bruins, who were ranked No. 21 in the AP’s preseason Top 25 poll.