Warriors' Kevon Looney recalls March Madness experience with UCLA, shares advice to college players

Before Golden State Warriors center Kevon Looney became an NBA champion, he tried to guide UCLA to a national championship when he was with the Bruins for the 2014-15 season.

Though UCLA lost in the South Regional semifinal to Gonzaga, Looney said it was among the moments he was going to remember for the rest of his life.

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UCLA Bruins forward Kevon Looney, #5, during the Sweet Sixteen. (Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire/Corbis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

“March Madness was a lot of fun,” he told Fox News Digital in a recent interview. “Until I got here (in the NBA) it was the biggest game, arena I got to play in, which is pretty cool.

“These are moments you’re gonna remember the rest of your life. My advice to the kids going in is just enjoy it, embrace it. Embrace the media, embrace your practices, embrace your teammates. You don’t know how long you’ll be able to play this game of basketball, play on that type of stage.”

Looney said his March Madness experience was “a lot of fun” but wished he could have helped the Bruins go further.

Kevon Looney, #5 of the UCLA Bruins, looks on against the Gonzaga Bulldogs during the South Regional Semifinal round of the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at NRG Stadium on March 27, 2015 in Houston. (Lance King/Getty Images)

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UCLA was the No. 11 seed in the region and topped SMU in the Round of 64. In the Round of 32, the team took care of No. 14 UAB before losing in the Sweet 16.

Looney was a Pac-12 Conference All-Freshman selection as he averaged 11.6 points and 9.2 rebounds per game his lone season with UCLA. He turned pro after the year and was drafted by the Warriors.

UCLA missed out on making the men’s tournament this year after three consecutive appearances.

Invisalign partnership

Kevon Looney, #5 of the Golden State Warriors, warms up before the game against the Philadelphia 76ers on Jan. 30, 2024 at Chase Center in San Francisco. (Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)

Looney joined a new team during the 2023-24 season, at least off the floor. He partnered with Invisalign to give himself a little boost of confidence throughout his day.

“It’s something I always wanted to try. Always want to improve my smile. I’m a big smile guy and I wanted improve that and to boost my confidence a little bit,” he explained to Fox News Digital. “I joined the team this year and it’s been a great experience.”

Looney said he wanted to keep a little bit of the gap in between his teeth, which is why he went the Invisalign route instead of braces.

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Ryan Gaydos is a senior editor for Fox News Digital.

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