Arizona Basketball

The question still is: When can Trier play?

Ray Smith, Allonzo Trier and Chance Comanche celebrate on the Arizona bench (Stan Liu/Arizona Athletics)

My biggest question — at least tonight as I write this — is why now? Why did ESPN’s Jeff Goodman break news about Allonzo Trier’s suspension on the eve of Arizona’s biggest weekend of the season?

Someone has to benefit? Who?

This story could have likely been written a month ago, or at least a couple of weeks ago given the details. Who didn’t know PEDs were involved? Just check Facebook for all the rumors. There were other rumors, but PEDs were the BIGGEST out there … and it’s been that way for months.

But the local media played nice and stopped asking questions because, well, it knew it wouldn’t get any answers publicly (and every basketball press conference starts with the caution that “we can’t comment on Allonzo Trier’s status at this time”). Besides, why would one news organization ask a direct question about Trier in a news conference setting, where everyone would have the news at the same time?

Instead, it was leaked to ESPN’s Goodman (who by the way is a friend, good at what he does and someone who usually has the bigger news involving the UA program). Bravo, Bravo. … What took you so long?

But again, why now? His story is pretty consistent to what I know to be factual, yet there were still missing pieces, according to those who have spoken to me.

The biggest, question, however: Is he eligible for this weekend’s games? In a statement from Trier late Wednesday he said he’s unsure when he’ll be able to return. “I hope it is soon,” he said as part of the statement released by UA.

Speaking of which, why couldn’t Trier have released that identical statement last week? Two weeks ago? In mid-December? After Thanksgiving? His call, but it would have saved a lot of speculation that he sometimes mocked on social media.

Anyway, back to the “when.” Why wasn’t that in the original story by the source? Leak this, but why not that? Maybe, of course, they still won’t know until Thursday morning after Trier’s most recent test. Of course, the PED has to be out of Trier’s system. And that’s COMPLETELY out. But why not say either way: he’s in or out for Thursday.

It’s my understanding the program/school was optimistic the banned substance would be out by now. Heck, my solid guess was he would have been ready to go in time for the Arizona State game, but that date came and went. But I definitely knew it was more of a week-to-week thing rather than a 50 percent thing or semester thing or even game-to-game thing.

But now it’s out there. And yet no concrete knowledge if Trier will be back at all or when. And isn’t that the real story? Isn’t that what UA fans care about: The when?

Mine, however, is this: Why now?

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