After just 13 games, Shareef O’Neal is planning to leave the Bruins.
O’Neal — the son of NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal — is transferring from UCLA, he announced on social media on Wednesday night. The sophomore has averaged only 2.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in just more than 10 minutes per game so far this season.
“After meeting with Shareef on Tuesday, he told me he plans to transfer,” UCLA coach Mick Cronin said, via Adam Zagoria. “We fully support his decision and are wishing him all the best.”
O’Neal was a four-star Rivals.com recruit out of Crossroads High School in Santa Monica and averaged 27 points per game as a senior. He missed his freshman season with the Bruins with a medical redshirt, however, after he was diagnosed with a right anomalous coronary artery and had to undergo open-heart surgery. Doctors discovered the issue during a routine physical, which his mother said likely saved his life.
O’Neal confirmed the news on Twitter on Wednesday, too, though he did not reveal his future plans.
“My parents have always taught me that transparency is the best form of communication. It is in this spirit that I announced today my departure from UCLA,” O’Neal said in a statement.
“A part of my heart will always be at UCLA, figuratively and literally. I’m looking forward to the next chapter, whatever that may be.”
UCLA currently boasts a 9-9 record, though has lost four of its last six. O’Neal did not play in the Bruins’ 50-40 win against Cal on Sunday.
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