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5-star Maryland basketball target Moses Brown commits to UCLA

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The Terps miss out on their highest-rated target left.

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Maryland basketball missed out on one if its top remaining targets in the 2018 class Monday, as Moses Brown announced his commitment to UCLA via SLAM Magazine.

The Jamaica, Queens, native is rated the No. 2 center and No. 15 overall player in his class. While Maryland was perceived to be the leader in his recruitment for a while, he’ll join the Bruins as their fourth commit for the Class of 2018.

Brown’s camp had been quiet for a while before his announcement. He took his third and final official visit to UCLA over the weekend of Oct. 27, and not much had leaked about his recruitment since. He took visits to College Park from Sept. 22-24 and Louisville earlier in the process, and appeared ready to commit to the Terps earlier, before some of his top options became embroiled in an FBI investigation.

Maryland nearly became an unexpected beneficiary of the FBI investigation into bribery in college basketball, which implicated two of the Terps’ closest competitors for Brown: Louisville and Brown’s recruiter from Arizona. Details about the investigation are still forthcoming, but it cleared the runway for a battle between Mark Turgeon and Steve Alford for his service. The Bruins became a more viable option for Brown in the weeks after the investigation broke, culminating in commitment.

The seven-footer is now the top-rated recruit headed to Westwood, joining four-star guards and fellow top-100 players Jules Bernard and David Singleton and three-star center Kenneth Nwuba. UCLA now has the No. 3 class in the nation.

While Maryland recently added transfer big man Schnider Herard, it wouldn’t be surprising if Turgeon looks around for another big body to bring in. The Terps are losing Michal Cekovsky and Sean Obi to graduation, and Bruno Fernando could still potentially play himself into the draft. As of now, five-star forward Jalen Smith and Herard (potentially at midseason) will join a frontcourt that will also return Ivan Bender and Joshua Tomaic.