Arizona basketball: Recruits for '12 class rated at top

2011-11-04T00:00:00Z 2014-07-24T10:19:28Z Arizona basketball: Recruits for '12 class rated at topBruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
November 04, 2011 12:00 am  • 

Among the many theories why the Arizona Wildcats are attracting a flood of elite high school talent:

• Went to the Elite Eight last season.

• Turned Derrick Williams from Top 150 prospect to No. 2 NBA draft pick.

• Have updated facilities, with a fancy locker room, a practice gym and private workout room.

• And they'll greet you at McKale Center with life-size action murals of the program's many NBA draft picks. Then bathe you in sunshine, and surround you with a passionate fan base.

There's also this theory: Maybe coach Sean Miller just tries really hard.

"He works his tail off," said Clark Francis, longtime head of the HoopScoop recruiting service. "You work your tail off and good things are going to happen. Last summer (in 2010), the most visible head coach out there recruiting was Sean Miller. And this year he was the runner-up (behind UCLA's Ben Howland). I go to the best events and there's usually a correlation between who goes the most and who gets the best recruits."

Francis' HoopScoop is one of the many sites ranking Arizona's 2012 class No. 1 nationally as of now. The Wildcats are expected to sign four consensus Top 50 players when the fall signing period begins Wednesday: center Kaleb Tarczewski, forward Brandon Ashley, forward Grant Jerrett and guard Gabe York.

Rivals put UA atop its updated rankings Thursday, while Scout analyst Evan Daniels said his site also would when it releases its next update.

"You have to look at Sean Miller and what he's been able to accomplish the past couple of years," Daniels said. "He was great at Xavier in recruiting and then he goes to Arizona. It's not a surprise. He's really good at his job."

Here's a look at the players Miller is expected to haul in next week:

Brandon Ashley, forward

Height/weight: 6-8/210

Hometown: Oakland, Calif.

School: Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.)

Committed to Arizona: Aug. 29, 2011

Also considered: Kentucky, UCLA, Oregon

Rating: 3 (Scout), 4 (ESPN), 13 (Rivals)

Game: Long, quick and athletic. Has potential to be force inside, though aggressiveness is sometimes inconsistent.

Worth noting: Played on the same Oakland Soldiers travel team with current UA freshmen Nick Johnson and Josiah Turner.

The analyst says: "He can really run the floor, and he competes inside. He'll challenge at the rim and he's not afraid to run in traffic. He's a very smooth, athletic operator in the lane." - Dave Telep, ESPN.

Grant Jerrett, forward

Height/weight: 6-10/215

Hometown: Chino Hills, Calif.

School: Lutheran (La Verne, Calif.)

Committed to Arizona on: Nov. 27, 2010

Also considered: UCLA, USC, UNLV

Rating: 9 (ESPN), 23 (Scout), 50 (Rivals)

Game: Long forward with good hands and passing ability. High basketball IQ.

Worth noting: Committed on same day as Lutheran teammate Eric Cooper, a 2013 guard and son of former Wildcat Eric Cooper.

The analyst says: Jerrett and Ashley "are very similar. Sort of finesse four men, not power players necessarily. They make shots consistently to 17 feet. Both long, rangy and good with the ball. With Ashley, I like his versatility on defense and he's just a good offensive player. You'd say basically the same thing about Grant but maybe he's not quite as athletic as Brandon." - Jerry Meyer, Rivals

Kaleb Tarczewski, center

Height/weight: 7-0/220

Hometown: Claremont, N.H.

School: St. Mark's (Southborough, Mass.)

Committed to Arizona on: Oct. 31, 2011

Also considered: Kansas, North Carolina, Kentucky

Rating: 6 (ESPN), 8 (Scout), 20 (Rivals)

Game: Solid all-around true center with good mobility and good hands. Developing hook shot, good rebounder and capable defender.

Worth noting: He's a fifth-year high school senior who will be 19 on Feb. 26.

The analyst says: "He's skilled, mobile and runs the court well. He didn't play as well as I expected this summer. … If you have three or four good players around him, he's very good." - Clark Francis, HoopScoop

Gabe York, guard

Height/weight: 6-1/170

Hometown: West Covina, Calif.

School: Orange Lutheran (Orange, Calif.)

Committed to Arizona on: July 10, 2011

Also considered: Washington, Marquette, Louisville

Rating: 31 (Rivals), 36 (ESPN), 42 (Scout)

Game: Natural, prolific scorer loves to fire away on the break but also has the athleticism to drive inside for baskets. Could improve defensively.

Worth noting: Committed shortly after Arizona began recruiting him harder in wake of MoMo Jones' transfer.

He said it: "He's going to put up points in college; that's what he does in AAU. He's very similar to Nick Johnson. He's not as good a defender as Nick but they both can be explosive scorers." - Meyer

On StarNet: Follow the Cats this season with Bruce Pascoe at: azstarnet.com/pascoe

Coming Sunday

Preview the Arizona Wildcats' 2011-12 season in the Star's annual special section.

Season Opener

• What: Valparaiso at Arizona

• When: 7 p.m. Monday

• TV; radio: ESPNU; 1290-AM, 107.5-FM, 990-AM (Spanish)

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Pac-12 basketball standings

  Conference Overall
Team W L T PCT W L T PCT
Arizona 0 0 0 0.000 5 0 0 1.000
Washington 0 0 0 0.000 3 0 0 1.000
Stanford 0 0 0 0.000 4 0 0 1.000
UCLA 0 0 0 0.000 4 1 0 0.800
Colorado 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
California 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
Oregon State 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
Utah 0 0 0 0.000 2 1 0 0.667
Oregon 0 0 0 0.000 3 2 0 0.600
Arizona State 0 0 0 0.000 3 2 0 0.600
USC 0 0 0 0.000 3 3 0 0.500
Washington State 0 0 0 0.000 1 2 0 0.333

AP Top 25


Pac-12 basketball schedule

Teams Date Time
Kansas State at
Arizona
11/25 68-72
VCU at
Oregon
11/25 77-63
Delaware at
Stanford
11/25 47-84
Cal State-Fullerton at
USC
11/25 49-53
Texas-Pan American at
Utah
11/26 49-53
Auburn at
Oregon State
11/26 49-53
Cal Poly at
California
11/26 8:00 pm
San Diego State at
Arizona
11/26 8:00 pm
San Jose State at
Washington
11/27 9:00 pm
UC-Santa Barbara at
Washington State
11/27 10:00 pm
Colgate at
Arizona State
11/29 12:00 am
Alabama State at
Utah
11/29 12:00 am
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