Top high school recruit Tito Horford, declared ineligible by the NCAA to play college basketball at the University of Houston, does not appear to be headed for Washington. Although there had been reports that American University and Georgetown, among others, were interested in the 7-footer, local sources indicated that there was little chance Horford was considering either school.

UCLA, sources said, is among the front-runners.

Horford, who had signed a letter of intent to play at Houston, was declared ineligible after the NCAA ruled a visit by Houston assistant coach Donnie Schverak to Horford's family home in the Dominican Republic was illegal.

Horford was not available for comment. Houston athletic officials, said to be considering an appeal, said Horford cannot now be legally recruited by other schools because his binding letter has been forwarded to the Southwest Conference. But Horford, according to the NCAA, can still play four years at another school if Houston's appeal is denied . . .

Southern Methodist, cited by the NCAA for alleged recruiting violations, has banned approximately 12 boosters from athletic facilities and ordered them not to talk to athletes, the Dallas Morning News reported.

The newspaper said school president Donald L. Shields sent letters to the boosters, informing them that they could no longer enter Ownby Stadium or the Mustangs' weight room. The letter also banned boosters from talking to recruits and enrolled athletes, the newspaper said.

"I know about the letter, but I didn't receive one," said George Owen, a former Mustangs basketball player and booster. "They were trying some housecleaning with the alumni who were involved with the investigation" . . .

Cedric Henderson, who as a freshman last season led Georgia's basketball team in scoring and rebounding, plans to return to school even though he has been ruled academically ineligible for the first four games, according to his attorney, Ed Tolley. "His preliminary plans are to return to school in the fall quarter and continue to work on academics," said Tolley. " . . . A final decision won't be made until just before the start of the fall quarter.