Arizona Basketball

Arizona Wildcats Productivity Report: Success shows returning experience not always important


This is college basketball as we know it today: Returning starters are a bonus, not a necessity, especially if you have a coach who knows how to immediately fit new pieces to the puzzle.

Arizona is 18-2 overall, 7-0 in the Pac-12, fresh off an upset win over then-No. 3 UCLA at Pauley Pavilion. Just like everybody thought, right, after losing Gabe York, Kaleb Tarczewski, Ryan Anderson and Mark Tollefsen?

Who needs experience to pull off an impressive win at a packed Pauley Pavilion?

Last season, the Wildcats finished 25-9 and 12-6 and they were 5-4 at the end of the first half of the 18-game conference regular season. They were swept in Los Angeles by this time last season with their senior-laden lineup.

Arizona, notching it up in talent with the likes of freshmen Lauri Markkanen, Kobi Simmons and Rawle Alkins, stands a good chance of being 9-0 at the first-half turn this time around with the struggling Washington schools coming to town.

A testament to why Sean Miller is worthy of coach of the year honors: None of his productivity leaders in each of the 20 games this season was a starter last season. Nor are any a senior.

Simmons was the productivity leader against the Bruins, feeding off Allonzo Trier’s return. It was the first time Simmons led the team in productivity since the season-opener against Michigan State.

Dusan Ristic, a backup for Tarczewski last season, has led the team the most in productivity at seven times followed by Markkanen (six), Alkins (two), Simmons (two), Parker Jackson-Cartwright (one), Keanu Pinder (one) and Chance Comanche (one).

Jackson-Cartwright backed up Kadeem Allen at the point last year with York playing at the off-guard position. Pinder is a junior college transfer. Comanche was low in the rotation last year behind Tarczewski and Ristic at the post.

Looking back at Arizona’s four Final Four teams, each had significant returning starters from the previous season in the lineup:

1987-88: Steve Kerr, Craig McMillan, Sean Elliott, Anthony Cook and Tom Tolbert.

1993-94: Damon Stoudamire, Khalid Reeves and Ray Owes.

1996-97: Miles Simon and Michael Dickerson.

2000-01: Gilbert Arenas, Jason Gardner, Richard Jefferson, Michael Wright and Loren Woods.

If Arizona reaches the Final Four in Phoenix, Allen and Trier would be the returning starters, similar to the 1996-97 season with only Simon and Dickerson. Allen and Trier averaged 23.2 points a game in a combined 1,605 minutes last season while Dickerson and Simon averaged 25.1 in a combined 1,791 minutes a year before advancing to the Final Four and winning the title.

Simon and Dickerson were strong complimentary parts in 1995-96 to Joseph Blair, Ben Davis and Reggie Geary.

Trier was behind but close to the production of Anderson and York last season.

The 1996-97 team had the same framework with important newcomers Mike Bibby and Bennett Davison and a post player in A.J. Bramlett who Ristic resembles now by starting after biding his time. Jackson-Cartwright as a junior coming off the bench embodies what Terry brought to the Wildcats 20 years ago as the ultimate team player.

This is not to say Arizona is destined for what happened in 1997, only that up to now similarities exist.

WHAT IS PRODUCTIVITY RATING?:
PP: Productivity Points (Points, assists, rebounds, steals, blocked shots, FGs made, FTs made added together and then subtracted by missed FGs, missed FTs, personal fouls and turnovers)
MIN: Minutes played overall
PR: Productivity rating per minute played (Productivity points divided by minutes played)

SEASON PRODUCTIVITY RATING

Player Pos G S PP MIN PR
Lauri Markkanen PF 20 20 534 626 .853
Allonzo Trier SG 1 0 22 27 .815
Dusan Ristic C 20 20 375 493 .761
Rawle Alkins SF 20 20 348 603 .577
Kadeem Allen SG 19 18 293 577 .508
Kobi Simmons SG 20 15 295 605 .488
Chance Comanche C 20 0 169 357 .473
Keanu Pinder PF 20 0 115 287 .401
Parker Jackson-Cartwright PG 14 7 143 359 .398
AVG 5-9.9 MIN
None
AVG 1-4.9 MIN
Kory Jones G 3 0 5 6 .833
Tyler Trillo G 7 0 -1 29 -.034
Jake DesJardins G 5 0 -2 11 -.182
Paulo Cruz G 7 0 -5 20 -.250
TOTAL TEAM 20 2277 4000 .569

PRODUCTIVITY REPORT
ARIZONA PAC-10/12
PLAYERS OF THE YEAR:

Name (Year) G S PP MIN PR
Derrick Williams (2011) 38 38 1190 1141 1.043
Sean Elliott (1989) 33 33 1128 1125 1.003
Chris Mills (1993) 28 28 838 870 .963
Sean Elliott (1988) 38 38 1167 1249 .934
Damon Stoudamire (1995) 30 30 964 1092 .883
Mike Bibby (1998) 35 35 905 1124 .805
Jason Terry (1999) 29 29 877 1107 .792
Nick Johnson (2014) 38 38 848 1254 .676
Total 269 269 7917 8962 .883

PREVIOUS GAME
ARIZONA 96, UCLA 85
PRODUCTIVITY RATING

* — STARTERS

Player Pos PP MIN PR
*Kobi Simmons SG 34 33 1.030
*Lauri Markkanen PF 29 32 .906
*Dusan Ristic C 19 22 .864
*Rawle Alkins SF 14 17 .824
Allonzo Trier SG 22 27 .815
Parker Jackson-Cartwright PG 12 18 .667
Chance Comanche C 11 17 .647
*Kadeem Allen SG 9 30 .300
LESS THAN 10 MIN
Keanu Pinder PF -3 4 -.750
TOTAL TEAM 147 200 .735

ARIZONA SCHEDULE/PRODUCTIVITY RESULTS
*-Honolulu
**-Las Vegas
***-Los Angeles
****-Houston

Date Opponent Results TeamPR Productivity Leader Pos PP MIN PR
11/11 *Michigan State W/65-63 .395 Kobi Simmons SG 22 26 .846
11/15 Cal State Bakersfield W/78-66 .560 Lauri Markkanen PF 48 36 1.333
11/18 Sacred Heart W/95-65 .805 Dusan Ristic C 31 22 1.409
11/21 Northern Colorado W/71-55 .565 Parker Jackson-Cartwright PG 35 34 1.029
11/24 **Santa Clara W/69-61 .510 Keanu Pinder PF 12 12 1.000
11/25 **Butler L/69-65 .390 Lauri Markkanen PF 17 21 .810
11/30 Texas Southern W/85-63 .705 Lauri Markkanen PF 35 29 1.207
12/3 ***Gonzaga L/69-62 .420 Dusan Ristic C 17 23 .739
12/6 Cal-Irvine W/79-57 .635 Dusan Ristic C 32 30 1.067
12/10 at Missouri W/79-60 .556 Rawle Alkins SF 27 37 .730
12/14 Grand Canyon W/64-54 .450 Dusan Ristic C 19 31 .613
12/17 ****Texas A&M W/67-63 .545 Dusan Ristic C 27 26 1.038
12/20 New Mexico W/77-46 .680 Chance Comanche PF 25 23 1.087
12/30 California W/67-62 .410 Dusan Ristic C 27 28 .964
1/1 Stanford W/91-52 .725 Rawle Alkins SF 36 29 1.241
1/5 Utah W/66-56 .530 Dusan Ristic C 29 26 1.115
1/7 Colorado W/82-73 .580 Lauri Markkanen PF 28 22 1.273
1/12 ASU W/91-75 .765 Lauri Markkanen PF 42 30 1.400
1/19 at USC W/73-66 .490 Lauri Markkanen PF 34 35 .971
1/21 at UCLA W/96-85 .735 Kobi Simmons SG 34 33 1.030

FOLLOW @JAVIERJMORALES ON TWITTER!

ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.

print
To Top