Looks like reporters aren’t the only ones badgering Josh Jackson and Terrance Ferguson about where they’re going during McDonalds All-American Game week.
UA commit Kobi Simmons playfully introduced Jackson as a “New U of A commit” on a video he posted to Twitter – leading, of course, to speculation that it meant something – while Bam Adebayo asked fellow McDonalds players where Jackson might be headed (Terrance Ferguson, FWIW, says Michigan State).
Ferguson, meanwhile, said on a Scout video that he expects to decide soon and loves playing defense.
We’ll have more on Tuesday from Chicago, after the players are made available during the main pregame news conference at the United Center.
We didn’t get to know Justin Simon very well, since he was largely kept away from UA’s weekly and postgame interview sessions. But our Zack Rosenblatt did catch up with him during the Pac-12 Tournament – when all schools are required to open their locker rooms to media – and came up with this story on how he was dealing with not playing much.
The possibility of Simon’s announced transfer was probably yet another reason why Sean Miller said he wanted to add four or five players to Lauri Markkanen in the 2016 recruiting class despite not having that much room at the time. Teams are allowed a maximum of 13 scholarships and UA carried 12 last season, and is losing four seniors, thus creating five openings plus any spring attrition.
At the moment, the Wildcats’ scholarship player roll-call looks like this (and it’s still very subject to change, of course):
G Parker Jackson-Cartwright
G Kadeem Allen
F Ray Smith
C Chance Comanche
C Dusan Ristic
G Allonzo Trier (may turn pro)
F Elliott Pitts (left team in February)
F Lauri Markkanen
G Kobi Simmons
G Rawle Alkins
That’s only eight players for sure – or reasonably sure -- at this point. If Trier leaves, Allen would be the only returning starter, and there will only be a collective six seasons of playing experience returning.