[ {"id":"027a37b0-2920-11e7-9e82-77af7360d868","type":"article","starttime":"1493145000","starttime_iso8601":"2017-04-25T11:30:00-07:00","priority":42,"sections":[{"pascoe":"sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe"},{"basketball":"sports/arizonawildcats/basketball"}],"flags":{"editors_pick":"true","top_story":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Arizona basketball: Pac-12 helps bloat NBA's early entry list","url":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe/article_027a37b0-2920-11e7-9e82-77af7360d868.html","permalink":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe/arizona-basketball-pac--helps-bloat-nba-s-early-entry/article_027a37b0-2920-11e7-9e82-77af7360d868.html","canonical":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe/arizona-basketball-pac--helps-bloat-nba-s-early-entry/article_027a37b0-2920-11e7-9e82-77af7360d868.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Bruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star","prologue":"The Pac-12 alone has 20 players jumping into a pool with room for only 60.\u00a0","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["arizona wildcats basketball","rawle alkins","chance comanche"],"internalKeywords":["#latest","#toptwo","#editorspick","#top5sports"],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451","description":"Arizona center Chance Comanche (21) and guard Rawle Alkins defend against Sacred Heart's Quincy McKnight in the game against the Sacred Heart Pioneers at McKale Center in Tucson, Ariz., on Friday, Nov. 18, 2016. The Wildcats won 95-65. Jordan Glenn / for the Arizona Daily Star","byline":"Jordan Glenn / for the Arizona Daily Star","hireswidth":2500,"hiresheight":1825,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/27/32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451/582ff5c501347.hires.jpg","presentation":null,"versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1041","height":"760","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/27/32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451/582ff5c4f04a7.image.jpg?resize=1041%2C760"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"73","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/27/32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451/582ff5c4f04a7.image.jpg?resize=100%2C73"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"219","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/27/32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451/582ff5c4f04a7.image.jpg?resize=300%2C219"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"747","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/27/32700818-ae24-11e6-9fa4-277032fda451/582ff5c4f04a7.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C747"}}}],"revision":41,"commentID":"027a37b0-2920-11e7-9e82-77af7360d868","body":"

Counting Arizona's four prospects, the Pac-12 finished with 20 players on the NBA's early entry list when the application\u00a0deadline passed\u00a0on Sunday.

In all, there are known to be\u00a0145 early-entry applicants, or 2.4 players for each of the 60 total draft spots (and of course that does not count seniors).

Players who have not signed with an agent have the option of returning to school by May 24, 10 days after the NBA Combine ends. Half of the Pac-12 early entrants are in that category, including\u00a0UA's Rawle Alkins and Chance Comanche\u00a0

No doubt the final results will have a big impact on the conference race, especially at USC, which has three players on the fence and could be the No. 2 pick behind Arizona if all of them return.

The next date of interest will be in about a week when the NBA Combine invitations are released (the NBA has not released a date for that announcement but it arrived at the end of April last year).

Since 60-70 players are typically invited to the combine \u2013 and there are always several potential draftees from overseas who cannot attend \u2013 not getting an invite might be a sign a player probably will not be drafted. Tyler Dorsey and Dillon Brooks were not invited last year and returned to Oregon.

Both Draft Express and NBC Sports have complete lists of who has entered. Here\u2019s the list of Pac-12 players:

ARIZONA

Lauri Markkanen, freshman

Kobi Simmons, freshman

Rawle Alkins, freshman (no agent)

Chance Comanche, sophomore (no agent)

CAL

Ivan Rabb, sophomore

OREGON

Dillon Brooks, junior

Jordan Bell, junior

Tyler Dorsey, sophomore

OREGON STATE

Stephen Thompson, Jr., sophomore (no agent)

Drew Eubanks, sophomore (no agent)

UCLA

Ike Anigbogu, freshman

Lonzo Ball, freshman

T.J. Leaf, freshman

Thomas Welsh, junior (no agent)

Aaron Holiday, sophomore (no agent)

USC

Elijah Stewart, junior (no agent)

Bennie Boatwright, sophomore (no agent)

Shaqquan Aaron, sophomore (no agent)

UTAH

Kyle Kuzma, junior (no agent)

WASHINGTON

Markelle Fultz, freshman


Didn't receive a return message from Shareef O'Neal last week but Scout caught up with him at EYBL over the weekend. In the video interview, O'Neal says NBA players were recruiting him to go to their schools but that he felt good about choosing Arizona because of the way its big men run the floor and shoot 3. (l'm guessing he may have seen a bit of Lauri Markkanen).

Shareef also said Crossroads teammate Ira Lee was \"jumping and screaming\" over the news, while Shaq was supportive.

\"When we on the visit, he loved Arizona,\" Shareef said of his father. \"He was really happy. He said it was good to get it out the way early. He said he wished he would have done that.\"


ICYMI, Draft Express did a video interview with Kadeem Allen at Portsmouth.

Allen spoke about his career and the role he accepted at Arizona.


Also ICYMI, Creighton has hired the high school coach of Brian Bowen, a UA recruiting target who is also considering ... Creighton, among others.


Already having lost point guard Casey Benson (probably to GCU), Oregon coach Dana Altman has been planning to meet with Kavell Bigby-Williams about the release to transfer he has sought.

The Ducks have four scholarships open but Altman says he will save some of them. Altman has previously added rotation players as late as September.


Colorado 7-footer Dallas Walton is ready to play after watching a lot of basketball the past few years.


Seattle announcer Bob Rondeau\u00a0has called his last basketball game\u00a0for the Huskies.

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After signing autographs and chatting with fans for an hour at Arizona\u2019s \u201cFan Appreciation Day,\u201d Rich Rodriguez was ready to talk football.

The sixth-year coach sat down on the stairway just past the Wildcats locker room inside the Lowell-Stevens Football Facility and discussed a variety of topics in an exclusive interview with the Star on Saturday.

Rodriguez had a lot to say about the new NCAA football reforms, and we\u2019ll get to that at a later date. In the meantime, here are some of Rodriguez\u2019s takes on the current UA squad as the Wildcats head toward summer workouts:

On QB Khalil Tate\u2019s breakout performance in the final spring scrimmage: \u201cIt helped him. He\u2019d had a pretty solid spring. But that was the best he had played. I don\u2019t necessarily believe in guys that are \u2018gamers\u2019 and then turn it on when the lights are on. You\u2019ve got to do it every day. He\u2019s a very talented guy that it\u2019s important to. He\u2019ll keep getting better. We needed him to push Brandon (Dawkins) more. Brandon\u2019s a good player, but everybody needs competition.\u201d

On whether that performance changed Rodriguez\u2019s perception of Tate: \u201cThat single practice didn\u2019t, even though it helped him from the standpoint that he needed to progress. You don\u2019t want guys staying level; you want them to keep getting better. He got better in that practice.\u201d

On his overall impressions of spring practice, which concluded March 31: \u201cYou\u2019re always working on attitude and culture. It\u2019s always been pretty good. But this spring was as good as we\u2019ve had. I\u2019m talking about enthusiasm, effort, the willingness to compete. The retention of some stuff that we carried over from the fall scheme-wise and new things that we wanted to put in. It was very productive. I would have liked to have had 10 more practices. I don\u2019t think the players would\u2019ve.\u201d

On the defensive player who stood out most in spring: \u201cSome of the veterans, you want them to still get better. You talk about a guy like Parker Zellers. He came here as unrecruited walk-on that nobody knew anything about. Undersized. And he made himself into a player. This spring he was even better. He\u2019s a guy you\u2019ve got to throw out of drills. That\u2019s an example of that edge we\u2019ve got to keep fostering. At times you can maybe lose that a little bit. We can\u2019t afford to lose that hard edge here.\u201d

On the depth of the offensive line after the departure of Keenan Walker: \u201cWhen I look at it now \u2013 and you don\u2019t know for sure how the newcomers are going to perform until they get here \u2013 that\u2019s the only position where I\u2019m not as comfortable that we have as much competition as we do other positions. That\u2019s one position we\u2019re addressing in recruiting. It\u2019s probably not as deep as I\u2019d like it to be.\u201d

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Lorenzo Romar will be hitting the road to recruit for Arizona this weekend, and he won\u2019t be focused just on his old backyard.

\u201cIt was never communicated to me by coach (Sean) Miller that `We\u2019re bringing you in because we want you to get the Seattle kids,\u2019 \u201c the former Washington coach said during his introductory news conference Thursday at McKale Center.

However, Romar will be recruiting up and down the West Coast, so some contact in Seattle will be inevitable. The Wildcats and Huskies may even go up against the same targets in many cases; Jaylen Nowell appeared to already be one before he reaffirmed his signing with Washington earlier this week.

\u201cIt will be a different experience,\u201d Romar said. \u201cThere\u2019s no doubt about that. But anybody would understand we\u2019re all trying to be the best we can be.\u201d

Romar has already experienced plenty of difficult and awkward moments in recruiting \u2013 that is, each time he called the members of his heralded 2017 recruiting class \u2013 most of which dissipated after his firing last month.

\u201cNone of those were fun conversations,\u201d Romar said. \u201cI talked to all of them. I tried to encourage them that they had something special going. I would try to get a feel for what they were thinking at the time.\u201d


Romar said he was impressed with the \u201ckind of character\u201d Miller has been targeting in his recruiting and that he hoped he could help wherever needed. With Joe Pasternack having taken his California recruiting ties to UC Santa Barbara, it is clear that Romar will be needed in the West.

\u201cThey do a phenomenal job in recruiting,\u201d Romar said. \u201cWe recruited against them (at Washington) and you hear how the kids talk about the Arizona program and the coaching staff, and how they go about their business. It\u2019s really impressive. I\u2019m coming in here with the attitude of whatever I can do to help and make sure Arizona basketball at last stays where it\u2019s at and hopefully try to get it even better. Whatever I can do to do that, I\u2019m gonna try to do.\u201d


Romar, 58, said he was interested in becoming a head coach again but wasn\u2019t focused on that now.

\u201cWe\u2019ll see,\u201d he said. \u201cI\u2019ve talked to many assistants before and especially if they haven\u2019t got that head coaching job they can\u2019t wait to get one and sometimes they prematurely take one that may not be the best situation for them.

\u201cBut I am not coming here thinking, \u2018OK, I\u2019ll put up with this for a few months so that I can .. no, that\u2019s not my train of thought . I\u2019m here and locked in and we\u2019ll just go and see what happens. I\u2019m not in a hurry to get away from this situation.\u201d


Romar was 3-11 against the Wildcats at McKale Center as Washington\u2019s head coach, but won 89-84 in just his second try, when Nate Robinson had 18 points and Brandon Roy added 12 during the 2003-04 season.

\u201cThat game was fairly close, maybe four or five points, and at the end Arizona shot the ball and it came off the rim and everybody stood around and watched it as if the game was over,\u201d Romar said. \u201cAnd I remember standing there thinking, `We about to win this? Here? Really? OK.\u2019

\u201cYou want to not only compete against the best but you want to be able to succeed against the best and if you can get a victory here boy you feel good.\u201d


On Thursday, Romar walked around McKale Center wearing a blue T-shirt bearing the words \u201cWildcat basketball never stops\" and showed up in it at his introductory news conference.

He was asked how wearing the shirt felt.

\u201cIt\u2019s pretty sweet,\u201d he said. \u201cYeah. Blue and red.\u201d


We\u2019ll have more from Romar posted later this evening and in Friday\u2019s print edition.

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Arizona's first two recruit commitments for its 2018 class both came from Tucson.

That local streak ended on Wednesday \u2014 Las Vegas defensive end Adam Plant announced his verbal commitment to the Wildcats in a post on Twitter.\u00a0

Plant joins Amphi offensive lineman David Watson and Cienega quarterback\u00a0Jamarye Joiner\u00a0as part of Arizona's three-person 2018 class.\u00a0

Plant comes from Bishop Gorman, a national high school football power that also produced former UA quarterback\u00a0Anu Solomon.\u00a0

The 6-4, 240-pounder is rated a three-star recruit by Scout.com, the second-best defensive end in Nevada and No. 12 in the West. Plant also holds offers from USC and Penn State.\u00a0

I am honored and proud to announce that I will be committing to the University Of Arizona #BearDown \ud83d\udc3b\ud83d\udd34\ud83d\udd35\ud83c\udfc8 pic.twitter.com/Z7Y1nAUGbD

\u2014 Adam Plant Jr. (@adamplant9) April 20, 2017
"}, {"id":"dbe44896-248a-11e7-8c68-3331b43517a7","type":"article","starttime":"1492617600","starttime_iso8601":"2017-04-19T09:00:00-07:00","lastupdated":"1493016583","priority":40,"sections":[{"blog":"sports/arizonawildcats/football/blog"}],"flags":{"editors_pick":"true","top_story":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"From quarterback to analyst: How B.J. Denker became an Arizona Wildcat again","url":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/football/blog/article_dbe44896-248a-11e7-8c68-3331b43517a7.html","permalink":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/football/blog/from-quarterback-to-analyst-how-b-j-denker-became-an/article_dbe44896-248a-11e7-8c68-3331b43517a7.html","canonical":"http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/football/blog/from-quarterback-to-analyst-how-b-j-denker-became-an/article_dbe44896-248a-11e7-8c68-3331b43517a7.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":9,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By Michael Lev\nArizona Daily Star","prologue":"Denker is back in Tucson, using his knowledge of RichRod's offense to help the current UA quarterbacks.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["arizona wildcats football","b.j. denker","rich rodriguez"],"internalKeywords":["#latest","#editorspick"],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315","description":"Former Arizona quarterback B.J. Denker has reunited with mentor Rich Rodriguez as an analyst for the Wildcats.","byline":"Kelly Presnell / Arizona Daily Star","hireswidth":2532,"hiresheight":1770,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/05/3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315/553c257a9b0b5.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1087","height":"760","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/05/3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315/553c257a98f3a.image.jpg?resize=1087%2C760"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"70","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/05/3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315/553c257a98f3a.image.jpg?resize=100%2C70"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"210","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/05/3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315/553c257a98f3a.image.jpg?resize=300%2C210"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"716","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/tucson.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/3/05/3057d888-eba4-11e4-8dd7-8bd9e4a8b315/553c257a98f3a.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C716"}}}],"revision":9,"commentID":"dbe44896-248a-11e7-8c68-3331b43517a7","body":"

B.J. Denker is back, and he couldn\u2019t be happier about it.

\u201cIt feels a little weird,\u201d the former Arizona Wildcats quarterback said, \u201cbut a good weird.\u201d

Denker, who\u2019s now an analyst for the team, considers Tucson to be home. It required a couple of other stops along the way to complete the journey, one closer and more conventional than the other.

Before joining the UA staff this spring, Denker spent two seasons as a graduate assistant for Texas A&M in College Station. Before serving as a student assistant at Arizona in 2014, Denker spent about three months playing quarterback for the Basel Gladiators in Switzerland.

But Denker has thought about coaching since he was a teenager, years before his breakout 2013 season for Arizona, when he passed for 2,516 yards, rushed for 949 and accounted for 29 touchdowns.

Denker established relationships with Rich Rodriguez, Rod Smith, Calvin Magee and others during his time in Tucson, and he parlayed those connections into a coaching gig.

Denker, 26, discussed his return to Arizona and other topics with local media during the final week of spring practice. Here\u2019s a portion of that conversation:

How did this opportunity come about?

A: \u201cI always stayed in contact with the coaching staff here \u2013 Coach Smith, Coach Magee, Coach Rod. Just asking them how they\u2019re doing, congratulating them on wins. After the season, I had a conversation with Coach Smith. They said there might be a position opening. I just kind of went from there.\u201d

When did you first realize you wanted to go into coaching?

A: \u201cProbably in high school, freshman year. I always knew. I always played quarterback. I always tell everybody, quarterback is like an extension of the coaching staff. It fit me well. I always wanted to coach. I always wanted to stay in sports, in football. It\u2019s been a fit like that forever.\u201d

What can you provide this particular team?

A: \u201cI\u2019m just here to help the quarterbacks and help the team any way I can. I\u2019ve got some experience. I played. I can put myself in their shoes. They can look at me and say, \u2018He\u2019s done this before. He might know what he\u2019s talking about.\u2019 This offense is the same one I played (in).\u201d

What are your specific day-to-day responsibilities?

A: \u201cJust helping out Coach Smith with the quarterbacks, anything that he needs. And helping out with junior-college recruiting, specifically in California and Arizona. I was a junior-college kid. I know what to look for and what it\u2019s like.\u201d

Was the way Arizona beat Arizona State last year straight out of the Denker playbook?

A: \u201cAnytime you can beat Arizona State it\u2019s a win, a positive, a plus, something to celebrate. The fact that they did it so dominantly on the ground just puts a little salt in the wound, which is always great for Wildcat fans across the country.\u201d

What did you learn during your time at Texas A&M under Kevin Sumlin?

A: \u201cGetting to see a different perspective on how things are done \u2013 how Coach Sumlin runs a program vs. how Coach Rodriguez runs a program. Right, wrong or indifferent, everyone has different philosophies and views. That was kind of cool to see. Working with coaches from different backgrounds, and players. We\u2019ve got a lot more Texas players on Texas A&M obviously, a lot more East Coast kids. Being able to work with (different) personalities and see what the difference in talent is.

\u201cIt was a good learning experience. Also X\u2019s and O\u2019s. Anytime you can learn some new schemes that\u2019s always great as a coach.\u201d

Was there anything in particular that Coach Sumlin did that stood out to you?

A: \u201cThey throw the (term) \u2018players\u2019 coach\u2019 around a lot. He really is. He\u2019s big on recovery and treatment. Pre-maintenance \u2013 \u2018prehab\u2019 is what we called it. He ran it like a professional football team in a sense.\u201d

What has RichRod meant to your career?

A: \u201cHe\u2019s meant the world to me. He was the first coach that recruited me, the first that gave me a starting position, the first coach that gave me a \u2018job\u2019 out of college when I was a student assistant here. He helped me get my first real job at A&M, and now he\u2019s brought me back.

\"All my success as a player and coach goes to Coach Rodriguez and the staff. Coach Smith has been a mentor too. And Coach Magee\u2019s been great. Those three guys specifically have helped me. Wherever I go from here has a lot to do with them, and Coach Sumlin too.\u201d

Where do you want to go from here? Would you like to be a head coach someday?

A: \u201cOh yeah. I feel like that\u2019s why you do it. That\u2019s why you coach, to be a head coach. That\u2019s why you play, because you want to be the best player. The ultimate goal is to be a college, Division I coach. If the stars align, I would love to coach here someday. That would be great.\u201d

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Four-star Southern California 2018 power forward Shareef O'Neal has committed to the Arizona Wildcats, according to an early-morning tweet from his travel club.

O'Neal, the son of former NBA star Shaquille O'Neal, retweeted a congratulations for the decision by his California Supreme team that was posted at 1:44 a.m. Wednesday. He tweeted out his own announcement at 8:06 a.m.

He had also been considering USC, UCLA, Kentucky and his father's former school, LSU, before it fired coach Johnny Jones.

\"My father never said you should do this, you should do that. So I'm gonna let him make his decision,\" Shaq told ESPN in January. \"LSU, Kentucky, Arizona. He's getting a lot of letters. A couple of weeks ago, he got his book with all his letters, I got my book with all my letters. It's a great feeling. But I'm gonna let him make the final decision.\"

O'Neal has a different game than his physically powerful father: He's a 6-foot-9, 200-pound forward who can play facing the basket. He told the Star in Las Vegas last July that Shaq called him a \"stretch four or five.\"

Shareef and Shaquille visited Arizona for the Wildcats' Nov. 18 game with Sacred Heart last season. He said in July he wanted to pay attention to how the Wildcats play, and was apparently impressed.

\u201cI\u2019ve been to Arizona for an unofficial visit and the campus was great, the coaches treated us like family,\u201d O\u2019Neal told Rivals recently. \u201cI know they let their bigs shoot and play the perimeter and that\u2019s the kind of thing I like.\"

The Cal Supreme team has many ties to the Wildcats. Former UA standout Miles Simon has coached for them, while current guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright played for the club as has incoming UA freshman DeAndre Ayton.

O'Neal also plays during the school year with incoming UA forward Ira Lee at Crossroads School of Santa Monica, Calif., and told the Star he is \"like a cousin\" of former UA walk-on Quentin Crawford, whose father has been Shaq\u2019s bodyguard and longtime close friend.

O'Neal becomes the Wildcats' second commitment from the class of 2018, after Emmanuel Akot committed last month. Arizona is also still recruiting for the class of 2017, with at least one spot still available.

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Arizona will pay Lorenzo Romar $400,000 to serve as the Wildcats' associate head coach next season, according to a school document obtained by the Star under a public records request.

He will also receive up to $12,000 for moving expenses.

Romar's new salary will be less than a quarter of what he made as Washington's head coach last season, though he was owed a $3.2 million buyout from UW when he was fired as the Huskies' coach last month. He was contracted to earn $1.7 million annually from Washington through 2020 from a deal signed in 2010.

Romar's new salary is a bump up from the $302,000 that Joe Pasternack earned as associate head coach last season before becoming UC Santa Barbara's head coach earlier this month.

Of UA's two assistant coaches, Mark Phelps makes $257,000 and Book Richardson $235,000. Head coach Sean Miller last season earned a guaranteed package of $2.5 million, $2.1 from UA and another $400,000 from Nike and IMG.

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Lorenzo Romar isn't sure exactly when Allonzo Trier started showing up at his Washington basketball camps. But there\u2019s one memory of those days he probably won\u2019t forget.

That\u2019s when Trier used his back as a backboard.

\u201cI remember I felt something hit my back, and it was the ball,\u201d Romar said, estimating Trier was then in fourth grade, around 10 years old. \u201cHe threw it at me, then got it back and he had a big grin on his face, like `Come and take it from me.\u2019 \u201c

Romar said Trier was already one of his best campers at that point. Of all ages.

\u201cHe had a great passion for basketball,\u201d Romar said. \u201cAs a fourth-grader he was almost as good as the 11th graders.\u201d

Romar will get a chance to start working with Trier again in offseason workouts this month and there's no doubt Trier is happy about that. Romar says he\u2019ll go to work immediately this week for Arizona and hit the road recruiting this weekend.


Kadeem Allen had an efficient three games in the Portsmouth Invitational, averaging 10.0 points and 5.6 rebounds while shooting 59.3 percent overall and 50 percent (4 of 8) from 3-point range. He also averaged 3.0 assists to 2.0 turnover and 1.3 steals.

The final box score involving Allen is attached to this post.


While celebrating his 21st birthday, Chance Comanche says he's striving for a new ride. (Zona Zealots says he rented a black Lamborghini).


Lakers players are praising Luke Walton.

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Arizona formally announced the hiring of former Washington coach Lorenzo Romar as an associate head coach on Saturday.

Romar, who was fired at Washington last month after going 298-196 over 15 seasons as the Huskies' head coach, will replace Joe Pasternack, who left to become UC Santa Barbara's head coach on April 4.

Almost immediately after Pasternack left, Romar was believed to be Miller's top choice if he wanted the job. However, the opening had to be posted for 10 days under UA regulations.

Romar, 58, is expected to receive a salary at least in the mid-six-figure range, and is receiving a $3.2 million buyout from Washington. Pasternack made $302,000 as UA's associate head coach.

\"Of all the potential opportunities that were out there for me, joining the Arizona program was the one that was most appealing,\" Romar said in a UA statement. \"I truly believe Sean Miller is one of the best coaches in America. The opportunity to join him, his staff and the rich tradition of Arizona basketball is something that I'm extremely excited about.\"

Although Washington and Arizona were among the Pac-12's biggest rivals early in Miller's UA tenure, Romar and Miller have had a close and respectful coaching relationship especially since they worked with USA Basketball's junior teams in 2014 and 2015. Miller was an assistant to the U18 team in 2014 and head coach of the U19 team in 2015, while Romar was a member of the junior national team committee.

\"Lorenzo's accomplishments in this game speak for themselves, including his successful tenure as the head coach at Washington for the last 15 seasons,\" Miller said in a UA statement. \"However, his dedication to his players, passion for this game and impeccable character is what everybody that knows him loves about him. He will no doubt make a significant impact in all aspects of our basketball program as we continue to build and improve in all that we do.\"

UA's leading scorer, Allonzo Trier, appeared to be especially excited about the news. A native of Seattle who attended Romar's camps early in his elementary school years, Trier tweeted out a series of upbeat emojis along with this: \"ROMAR!!!!!!!!!!\"

Romar was known at Washington for recruiting and developing much of the top-level talent in the Northwest. He had 13 players become NBA Draft picks but often watched many of them leave early for the NBA, and in many cases before they were expected to leave.

Last season, Romar coached guard Markelle Fultz, who is likely to be one of the top two draft picks, but the Huskies were just 9-22 overall and 2-16 in the Pac-12.

Before arriving at Washington in 2002-03, Romar spent three seasons apiece as the head coach at Pepperdine (1996-99) and Saint Louis (1999-2002). He played at Washington and for five seasons in the NBA.

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In different Jordan Brand Classic games Friday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, Arizona signees DeAndre Ayton and Brandon Randolph made their mark.

Ayton had 19 points and eight rebounds (seven on the offensive end) in the West's 124-116 win over the East in the national game. Earlier in the \"regional\" game, Randolph had 32 points and nine rebounds in 20 minutes.

Kind of makes you wonder how Randolph might have done in the marquee game.

USA Today High School Sports said Randolph actually had to play often inside Friday despite being a 6-6 wing, and Randolph said afterward he hoped to bulk up before playing for the Wildcats. (Certainly, this brings a smile to Chris Rounds' face).

It's about \u201cjust getting my body ready,\u201d Randolph told USA Today. \u201cI know that once I get my body right, I\u2019ll be ready to compete at the next level.\u201d


Of the national game, Rivals' Eric Bossi wrote that Ayton played the best he has on the all-star circuit, \"being active on the glass and committed to playing strong on the interior.\"

Adam Zagoria posted some video highlights, where Ayton is shown in No. 9 dunking over teammate Mohamed Bamba, of all people...


Meanwhile, UA target Brian Bowen picked up an MVP award and told Rivals he's still primarily looking at Arizona, Creighton, Michigan State, N.C. State and Texas. He said he hopes to make a decision before the end of the month.

\"So many schools have tried to get involved because I'm still uncommitted,\" Bowen told Rivals. \"So many guys who are committed have tried to talk to me as well but I'm going to stay with my same five as of now.\"


Kadeem Allen will play his last Portsmouth Invitational game at 11 a.m. Saturday (stream linked here).

"} ]