Boys’ basketball: Cathedral’s Kobe Paras commits to UCLA


Days after being offered a scholarship by UCLA Coach Steve Alford, 6-foot-6 junior wing Kobe Paras of L.A. Cathedral has committed to the Bruins.

Paras, who moved to the area from the Philippines and is living with a host family, made the announcement Saturday morning in a news release sent out by Cathedral.

Paras’ father, Benjie, was a professional basketball player in the Philippines and was the only player named both rookie of the year and MVP in the same season.


“Kobe, the world is yours and now it’s time for you to decide which path you want to take.” Benjie Paras told his son in a phone call, according to the news release. “I sent Kobe to America to begin his transformation into manhood, while continuing his LaSallian development and education. Each time I speak with him, I am convinced I made the right decision and investment.”

“I am thankful that Coach Steve Alford is willing to take a chance on me,” Kobe Paras said in a statement. “I am very appreciative to all the coaches that made offers to me for their interest. While all of this is new to me, I realize that I can only go to one college so I felt it was not necessary to continue the recruitment process with so many very good schools and coaches already at the table. I see no need to seek out more offers.”

Paras, 17, is known for his leaping ability and outside shot. He received notice when he was 15 and dunked the ball over LeBron James during an exhibition in Manila.