Arizona Basketball

Top prospect DeAndre Ayton signs with Arizona

There wasn’t expected to be major drama, and there wasn’t, but it was still probably a huge sigh of relief for Arizona fans when the nation’s No. 1 recruit made it official.

DeAndre Ayton‘s signature, which came on the second day of the November signing period, is the topper on what is the top-ranked class in the country, according to the 247Sports.com Composite rankings.

Coach Sean Miller also has shooting guard Brandon Randolph (No. 38 nationally), power forward Ira Lee (No. 58) and point guard Alex Barcello (No. 80). That trio signed on Wednesday.

Regarding Ayton, a 7-foot, 235-pound big man, this is a recent evaluation from DraftExpress.com:

What’s so impressive about Ayton at this stage, is his physical and athletic abilities, and how he uses them to have an impact on the game. He has the ability to dominate the game in the paint, using his size and strength to finish inside, crash the boards, and protect the rim. He is not the most explosive athlete, but he is long, and quick off the floor, and has the fluidity and change of speed to look at ease running the floor in transition, not a skill many guys his size have.

Ayton’s back to the basket game is not yet polished, and he often just relies on his physical tools to get him what he wants. He is a willing passer, who can force things at times, but made some really nice high-low passes, using his size to see over the top of the defense.

Ayton’s motor and aggressiveness has been questioned at times, often blending in, when it seems he should be able to impact the game on almost every possession. At 7-feet tall he can dominate the game in the paint, but can often get caught floating around the perimeter.

Ayton was born in the Bahamas and lived in San Diego before his family moved to Phoenix before his junior year in high school. He will be playing for a second season at Hillcrest Acacdemy in Phoenix.

Ayton is the 14th five-star prospect to sign with Miller at Arizona.

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