Arizona Basketball

Scout’s Gershon: Romar is Miller’s top option and former Washington coach wants Arizona assistant job

Much of when a new coach is about to be hired speculation can run rampant.

In terms of the the Arizona assistant coaching job, left vacant by Joe Pasternack’s move to become head coach at Cal Santa Barbara, former Washington coach Lorenzo Romar’s name popped up first last week in Phoenix leading up to the Final Four.

Two reliable sources contacted our Andy Morales tonight that they saw Romar at an upscale Tucson restaurant tonight:

Earlier in the day, national recruiting analyst Josh Gerson told colleague Chris Fetters of Scout today in a podcast that Romar appears to be Miller’s top option and they are at the point of working out details.

“I think all information points to the fact that it is way more likely than not that Romar does join the Arizona coaching staff,” Gershon said. “Is it possible that something falls apart? Of course.

“But Sean Miller’s moving forward with Romar as his top option, and Romar wants the job, so at this point it’s just working out details. I do think that as of now that will happen but you know how things are about things falling apart at the last second.”

If Romar’s hire is eminent with Miller at Arizona, it would mean the head coaches with the most seniority in the Pac-12 over the last 15 years will be on one staff.

Romar was the dean of Pac-12 coaches before his 15-year tenure at Washington came to an end after he was fired after this season, when the Huskies finished 9-22.

Miller, who will be in his ninth season at Arizona in 2017-18, is now the coach with the most seniority in the conference.

Romar not only is an established head coach — admired by Lute Olson because of his transition style of offense at Washington — he is a talented recruiter.

The 58-year-old coach has recruited in the last two to three years the likes of Markelle Fultz, Michael Porter Jr., Dejounte Murray and Marquese Chriss.

Matched with Miller’s recruiting prowess, and that of longtime assistant Book Richardson, Romar can give Arizona a three-headed monster in terms of attracting young talent. The other assistant, Mark Phelps, also recruits and he is known for his scouting work on individuals and opponents.

Romar was 298-195 in his 15 seasons at Washington. He is 391-283 overall, also coaching three seasons each at Pepperdine and Saint Louis.

In a bit of irony, Arizona women’s coach Adia Barnes is reportedly a top candidate to coach Washington’s program after Mike Neighbors left to coach Arkansas.

Pasternack’s hire was made official today with a press conference. Will Arizona schedule a press conference soon to announce its hire to replace him?

FOLLOW @JAVIERJMORALES ON TWITTER! 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, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports,, 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.

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