This is a very interesting time of year in the basketball world. College prospects are working out with NBA teams with the Draft coming up in a couple of weeks, players going into college are expected to all report to campus officially in the coming weeks and future college hopefuls are gearing up for big showcase camps. I decided to take a look at three players that fit these categories that have interesting news around them and ties to Arizona.
Jaylen Brown: The one-and-done from California-Berkely visited the Phoenix Suns for a draft workout to begin the week. Brown was one of the best players to come out the Pac-12 this season. By little fault of his own, Brown’s visit to downtown Phoenix did not catch the same level of buzz as you might expect from a player of this caliber coming from the Pac-12 may have with a west coast professional team.
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) June 6, 2016
Its seems with Brown, people either love him or are not a fan which is a product of how little we see from one-and-done’s. What I did see from Brown is a player with a supreme combination of talent, size and athleticism who can take over a game but also at times disappear. He was no where to be found when Cal came to Arizona to play U of A and ASU and no one from Cal showed up in the NCAA Tournament with all that was going on around their program. At 6-7, 223 pounds, he is a wing presence that the Suns could use but is a sup-par outside shooter which sounds a lot like someone the Suns already have in T.J. Warren.
People have mocked Brown to the Suns but I don’t see it for them at four and it is doubtful he will still be there at 13.
Terrence Ferguson: There have been rumors to whether or not one of Arizona’s incoming five-star freshman is going to join the program. After originally committing to Alabama, Ferguson de-committed and then pledged to Arizona shortly after competing in the McDonlad’s All-American Game in Chicago. There is speculation however that he may not head to Tucson when all the players officially report to campus this summer. Jerry Meyer of 247Sports reported early Monday that Ferguson is “expected” to play overseas rather than in Tucson “barring an unexpected change of plans.” ESPN’s Fran Fraschilla also tweeted that he’s hearing Ferguson could end up in Australia.
Sean Miller said at his press conference back on May 25th that he expects Ferguson to be there in Tucson for at least one of the Summer sessions working around his schedule as he will most likely be with USA Basketball’s U18 this summer. Miller coached him last summer with USA Basketball’s U17 team and had this to say of his game:
“Terrence is as good a defensive player as I’ve seen at his age,” said Miller. “In terms of his ability to shoot the basketball coupled with his ability to defend, he’s almost like an upper-classman in those two areas of his game and it’s just a matter of him picking up strength and size.”
Miller was asked about the status on if he signed a Letter of Intent to come and his response on the 25th was that he did not want to get into what his guys did or didn’t sign and that he obviously signed something if he was talking about him on that day.
“We anticipate him being here and really look forward to coaching him,” Miller stated.
Gary Parrish of CBS expanded on this report Monday explaining that Ferguson’s connection with Prime Prep in Texas could be the root of this issue and not just simply a player wanting to go overseas instead of playing in college. He explained that Prime Prep was a “heavily scrutinized Texas institution that is now closed but has previously created NCAA issues for practically every student-athlete it enrolled,” which includes Emmanual Mudiay. He went on to mention that Ferguson graduated from Advance Preparatory International which is “an offshoot of Prime Prep Academy.”
If it’s basketball, there’s always shoe deals being brought up. Meyer further reported that if Ferguson signs overseas, there is a deal waiting for him with Under Armor. Interesting that the last two high profile prospects worth noting, Brandon Jennings and Emmanual Mudiay, both signed with Under Armor. This becomes a situation Wildcat fans are all to familiar with when you mention Brandon Jennings.
Alex Barcello: Hard to believe Corona del Sol’s Alex Barcello is going into his senior year. Time seriously flies. The 2017 Arizona prospect has a big summer ahead of him as he will be part of some major showcase camps in the coming weeks. Starting next week, he will be at the NBA Top 100 camp and later on he will be attending the Nike Top 60 Camp and Stephen Curry Select Camp. Barcello has 19 reported scholarship offers and spending a lot of time off the court preparing for the SAT test which will be crucial with a school like Stanford among the 19.