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Former UCLA men’s basketball player Jalen Hill dies at 22

Former UCLA men’s basketball forward/center Jalen Hill stands during a game. (Daily Bruin file photo)

By Sam Settleman

Sept. 20, 2022 10:51 p.m.

This post was updated Sept. 21 at 11:54 p.m.

Former UCLA men’s basketball player Jalen Hill has died, his family announced in an Instagram post Tuesday night.

A former forward/center for the Bruins, Hill played for UCLA for three seasons from 2018 to 2021. He died at age 22 after he went missing in Costa Rica, according to the post from his family.

The team released a post on social media Tuesday night offering its condolences to Hill’s family and friends.

“Our program is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of former student-athlete Jalen Hill,” the program said in the statement. “We offer our most sincere condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time.”

In April 2021, Hill announced he had stepped away from the program in February of that year in the middle of UCLA’s 2020-2021 season. In a video posted to his Instagram account April 6, 2021, Hill cited mental health reasons for why he left the program

Some of Hill’s former teammates – including junior guard Jaylen Clark, senior guard/forward Jaime Jaquez Jr. and former guards Jules Bernard and Jaylen Hands – posted tributes to Hill on Instagram on Tuesday night.

“Love you JHill,” Bernard said on his Instagram story. “Your beautiful soul will grace the … heavens.”

“You know the Deal Brother! Since ninth grade!!! Hooped, cried, laughed together, can go On and On forever man,” Hands said on Instagram. “Watch over us! RIP JHILL and Love Always.”

Other former UCLA athletes also shared their reactions to the news.

“My heart literally dropped,” said former UCLA women’s basketball forward Michaela Onyenwere on Twitter. “Rest In Peace to a beautiful soul.”

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Sam Settleman | Sports editor
Settleman is currently the Sports editor on the football, men's basketball and gymnastics beats. He was previously an assistant editor on the gymnastics, women's soccer, women's golf, men's water polo and women's water polo beats and a contributor on the gymnastics and women's water polo beats.
Settleman is currently the Sports editor on the football, men's basketball and gymnastics beats. He was previously an assistant editor on the gymnastics, women's soccer, women's golf, men's water polo and women's water polo beats and a contributor on the gymnastics and women's water polo beats.
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