Mick Cronin and Jaime Jaquez Jr. played a large role in the resurgence of UCLA basketball. Now, Jaquez is off to the NBA after being selected in the first round of the 2023 NBA Draft by the Miami Heat.

On Friday, Cronin released a statement reflecting on Jaquez’s path through college basketball and his impact on the Bruin program. Cronin is also expecting big things from the forward, calling Jaquez “a winner” in his statement.

“The Jaime Jaquez story is what college basketball is all about,” Cronin said about the new first-round pick. “You’re talking about a young man who led his team for four years, went to the Final Four as a sophomore and won the Pac-12 regular-season title as a senior. Plain and simple, Jaime is a winner. Words can’t describe how proud the entire UCLA community is of Jaime. We can’t wait to watch him thrive with the Miami Heat.”

Jaime Jaquez career stats

As a freshman, Jaquez appeared in 31 games (23 starts) for the Bruins while averaging 8.9 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.4 steals. The NCAA Tournament was canceled his first year in the program, but Jaquez would go on to lead UCLA to 3 straight appearances in March Madness and a 2-seed in his final season.

In 134 career games (126 starts), Jaquez leaves the Bruins with averages of 13.4 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2 assists and 1.3 steals. He now joins a Heat organization that played for the NBA Finals this past season before losing to the Denver Nuggets.