Jordan Adams' impressive freshman basketball season at UCLA has ended, just before the Bruins begin play in this week's NCAA Tournament.
The former Central Gwinnett standout broke a bone in his foot during last weekend's Pac-12 Tournament semifinal game against Arizona, keeping him from the conference title game, which UCLA lost to Oregon. An X-ray revealed the broken bone, which will prevent the star freshman from making his NCAA tourney debut.
Adams led a second-half Bruin comeback in the matchup with Arizona, finishing with a game-high 24 points. He scored 18 in the second half and defended Arizona star Solomon Hill until he broke the bone in his foot on the game's final play.
The 6-foot-5, 220-pounder, who played his final two high school seasons at Oak Hill Academy (Va.), was a key player for UCLA from the start of this season. He topped the 20-point mark in his first four college games, becoming the first Bruin freshman ever to accomplish that feat.
Adams averaged 15.2 points, second on the team and eighth in the conference, and led UCLA in made free throws and free-throw percentage (84 percent, third in the Pac-12). He also was the Pac-12's steals leader with 73, one shy of the school record of 74 held by Tyus Edney, now a Bruins assistant.
But his breakthrough season ended just before Friday's NCAA tourney opener against Minnesota in Austin, Texas. His absence will put more pressure on a UCLA team with several talented freshman, including leading scorer Shabazz Muhammad.
Muhammad faced even more defensive attention in the Pac-12 finals without Adams on the floor.
"They were really keying on me," Muhammad said. "That's what teams are going to do. Other guys have to step up."