The UCLA basketball program announced on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018, that Tyger Campbell, a 6-foot tall, 165-pound freshman point guard, will not be playing for the 2018-19 season after suffering a severe and freak injury.
During a practice over the weekend, Tyger made a wrong cut and accidentally tore his left ACL. His absence from the Bruins will prove to be a hit as Campbell will be the third player in UCLA to miss this season after Shareef O’ Neil was pulled out due to a heart ailment and Alex Olesinki due to a stress fracture on his right foot.
UCLA loses freshman Tyger Campbell for the year with an ACL tear. Second medically related loss for the Bruins already. pic.twitter.com/J1hz7AKRe6
— Brian Hamilton (@_Brian_Hamilton) October 9, 2018
During Campbell’s senior year at La Lumiere High, he averaged 15.5 points and 7.2 assists per game. The school finished with a 23-4 record which landed them No. 6 on the final USA Today High School Sports rankings.
When Campbell was first signed into the Bruins, he was praised heavily by UCLA head coach Steve Alford for his versatility. Campbell was able to have pass-first mentality but also had the tendency to score when needed to. His feel for the game allowed him to flourish against older competition.
Prior to the injury, Campbell was planned to have shared ball-handling practices with Jaylen Hands, a sophomore at UCLA, who is also now the team’s only point guard. Hands averaged 2.6 assists and 9.9 points per game last season.
All of these injuries put a huge impediment on the Bruins. The loss of O’Neal could have been sustained as the Bruins still have Brown, Nwuba, Jalen Hill, and Cody Riley. But the loss of Campbell might prove to be a big issue to the team.
This season is looking bleak for the Bruins with that many top players gone. They are scheduled to open the year against Fort Wayne on Nov. 6 at 9 p.m. ET.