Extra HS year could benefit Wildcat commit Cooper

2012-06-14T15:12:00Z 2012-06-14T17:09:18Z Extra HS year could benefit Wildcat commit CooperBy Bruce Pascoe, Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

After missing the bulk of his freshman and sophomore seasons while battling severe injuries, Eric Cooper may have had a rough time if he entered UA in 2013-14 as originally scheduled.

But now Cooper is preparing for another two full seasons of high school after reclassifying for 2014 and remains committed to the Wildcats. His father, Eric, said today that his son will play next season for him at St. Anthony’s in Long Beach and then a fifth year at a prep school in the East that the family has identified but not yet announced.

The younger Cooper had played with UA freshman Grant Jerrett at LaVerne Lutheran High School, where his father used to coach, the past three seasons.

“He had two years’ worth of dealing with knee injury," missing three-quarters of two seasons, so it could help him to have a little more time,” said Cooper, the coach at St. Anthony’s and a former UA player. “It gives him time to develop more and he’ll know how to live by himself and travel all the time. He’ll be more prepared for college.”

Cooper, who was diagnosed with a split kneecap as a freshman and suffered a tibia stress fracture the next season, is also still only 16 years old -- a typical age for a rising junior.

The elder Cooper said his son will play again with Belmont Shore teams this summer, some with director/coach Dinos Trigonis and some with Cooper’s team within the travel-ball program.

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Coaches can try to contact high school juniors and seniors as much as they want via phone or text message starting today. But they might want to ease up on guys such as Aaron Harrison, a recruiting target of UA (and everyone else) who told Evan Daniels that he's not excited about the new rule change.

 In addition, ESPN recruiting analyst Dave Telep is against the rule.

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NAU coach and former UA aide Jack Murphy is getting coaching pals Josh Pastner, Damon Stoudamire and Mike Dunlap together for a clinic in Flagstaff in August.

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The father of Los Angeles 2015 wing Tyler Dorsey tells Scout that USC and Arizona are recruiting his son the hardest.

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