Arizona coaches playing it smart by avoiding another signing in the fallby Javier Morales on Sep. 22, 2010, under Sports
Arizona’s basketball recruiting for players signing in the fall is apparently complete with the verbal commitment of Sacramento guard Josiah Turner on Sunday.
Turner, Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep guard Nick Johnson and Mouth of Wilson (Va.) Oak Hill Academy forward Sidiki Johnson have verbally committed to the Cats and are slated to sign a national letter of intent on Nov. 10, the first day of the fall signing period.
Their signing will put the Wildcats two over the maximum amount of 12 they can have for the 2011-12 school year. The NCAA maximum is 13 but the UA will serve its self-imposed penalty of having only 12 as a result of Lute Olson‘s recruiting-letter-to-boosters mishap.
The supposed visit of Dallas Lincoln forward LeBryan Nash, a 5-star player according to Rivals.com, will not happen this weekend as was previously reported. Sources have indicated that the visit was tentative to begin with, depending on the result of Turner’s visit last weekend.
Nash, rumored for weeks to be a lean to Oklahoma State, has indicated he will sign in the fall which does not meet Arizona’s needs at this time (even though Nash is an elite recruit).
Can you imagine the fallout from the current roster if the UA goes three over the limit with the season starting? Two over the limit makes sense to deal with currently (more on that below). Three over the limit could cause some team unrest, so it’s a smart move that Sean Miller and his staff will wait until the spring (as the season concludes) for potential developments.
Detroit Country Day School center Amir Williams, rated a 4-star prospect, said recently that he will sign in November after originally stating he would sign in the spring. That makes him a long shot to wind up in Tucson.
Norvel Pelle, a forward from Long Beach (Calif.) Price, has long been recruited by other schools than Arizona.
If a scholarship becomes available (if three or more current UA players are not around in 2011-12), don’t be surprised if the staff goes strong after San Diego Hoover High School forward Angelo Chol (although the Cats are late-comers to his recruiting process). The UA coaches are still slated to visit Chol for an in-home session Sept. 28.
Chol has indicated he will wait until the spring to sign in order to watch all of his suitors play during the regular season. He is also being recruited by Kansas, Alabama, Washington and North Carolina. He has visited Alabama and will visit Kansas on Oct. 15-16. He has a tentative visit date with Washington in February — yes, February. North Carolina, like Arizona, is a newcomer to the Chol sweepstakes.
Now, how will the Wildcats handle being two over the scholarship limit?
The likely scenario — with no confirmation from Arizona or its coaches (strictly my opinion) — is that Derrick Williams will forego the remainder of his eligibility and enter the NBA draft, and academic senior Alex Jacobson will reassess his plans after being in the program for four years (he redshirted his freshman season).
If a scholarship is freed beyond these two scenarios, that means an existing player will transfer, become an academic casualty or have his scholarship pulled (scholarships are a year-to-year arrangement). The last scenario won’t happen because Miller has stressed team togetherness and loyalty to the program since his hiring last April.
If no roster moves take place by the spring (other than the scenario involving Williams and Jacobson), the UA coaching staff is prepared to shut down its Class of 2011 effort and concentrate on the Class of 2012.