Arizona’s media relations department contributed to this report.
Arizona redshirt sophomore guard Brandon Williams has announced that he will explore professional opportunities and forego his remaining collegiate eligibility.
“Arizona, I Say Thank You!” Williams said in an Arizona press release. “Thank you to the University, the fans, the basketball staff and all those who supported me. I especially want to thank Sean Miller, who believed in me from day one. I also want to send a special thanks to athletic trainer Justin Kokoskie and the training staff for pushing me each day during this long rehab process.
“With that being said, it’s now time for me to pursue my goals of being a professional basketball player. I will continue to pursue my degree in the future, and it will always be UofA forever in my heart. Thanks again to the entire Arizona basketball family, both past and present! BEARDOWN FOREVER!!!”
Williams, a native of Los Angeles, was a top 40 national recruit coming out of Crespi Carmelite High School. He made an impact right away as a freshman during the 2018-19 season, earning Pac-12 All-Freshman Honorable Mention honors after averaging 11.4 points and 3.4 assists in 26 games. In his second collegiate game, he became the first Arizona freshman since Khalid Reeves in 1989-90 to record at least eight assists and zero turnovers. His 1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio was the top freshman ratio in the Pac-12 and ranked fifth overall in the conference.
Williams missed all of last season with recurring knee problems. He was cleared to return to basketball by his doctors in early June after undergoing another knee surgery to correct osteochondritis dissecans, a congenital condition that has hindered him since high school.
“I am going to miss Brandon Williams being a part of our everyday program at Arizona,” head coach Sean Miller said in Arizona’s release. “However, I am excited to follow his path moving forward, both on the basketball court and academically, as he continues to pursue his undergraduate degree from our university.
“Brandon is one of the most talented guards we have recruited during my tenure here. Unfortunately, his health didn’t allow him to showcase his talents for an entire career in our program. In his lone year playing for us, while he was never 100% physically, Brandon had an outstanding season. completely support Brandon’s quest to pursue his professional opportunities, especially now that he has had successful knee surgery and over a year to recover. On a personal level, I want to thank Brandon’s parents, Chris and Kisha, for their unwavering support of both their son and our basketball program. I will certainly miss seeing them at our games and throughout the season.”
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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.