UA basketball: Mayes trying to stay positive as role shrinks

2013-12-27T00:00:00Z UA basketball: Mayes trying to stay positive as role shrinksBy Bruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Jordin Mayes says it’s not hard to stay positive, but the numbers suggest otherwise.

The Arizona senior guard played in all 13 games of the Wildcats’ nonconference season, but averaged only 5.8 minutes per game. Having slipped behind sophomore Gabe York in the Wildcats’ rotation, Mayes is playing roughly half as much as he did last season.

Mayes actually averaged 13.8 minutes a game during nonconference play last season, and finished averaging 11.8 minutes. He played an average 17.7 minutes as a part-time starter in 2011-12 and 14.3 minutes as a freshman in 2010-11.

Mayes was given two of his bigger opportunities of the season at the end of nonconference play, logging nine minutes each against Southern and Northern Arizona. He helped UA on the defensive end in those two games, while also hitting 1 of 4 field goals and going 3 of 4 from the line.

“With me, it’s just coming in and being positive and trying to help my team out the best way possible on the defensive end and offensively,” Mayes said after UA’s 77-44 win over NAU on Monday, later adding, “It’s just having a belief in yourself, and knowing that once you get that time, to be productive and help the team out any way that’s possible.”

Coach Sean Miller has said Mayes doesn’t get enough credit for his defensive ability. The senior says he enjoys playing on that end of the floor.

“It feels good to stay in front of somebody, stop them, and help your teammates out when other players drive,” Mayes said.

But while Miller had a chance to play Mayes, York, forward Matt Korcheck and guard Elliott Pitts during the Southern and NAU games — Miller said he did not play freshman Zach Peters because of “where he’s at” in practice — UA still pretty much has a seven-man rotation, with York and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson coming off the bench.

Mayes makes it an eight-man rotation. Barely.

“Jordin did a good job the last couple of games,” Miller said. “That doesn’t surprise me. He’s the most experienced. But no, I don’t feel good (about the bench).

“Gabe York is the one guy who’s really solidified himself. He played great basketball (against NAU). I feel really good about Gabe moving forward, but we’re not nine or 10 deep. (If) guys come in the game and get scored on, they’re not going to play.”

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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 0 0 1.000
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 6:00 pm
Auburn at
Oregon State
11/26 7:00 pm
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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