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Today’s Red-Blue Scrimmage is Arizona’s first public unveiling of the 2015-16 squad, which means it’s an appropriate time to have recruits in town to see a packed arena.
Four elite recruits — three from the Class of 2017 — are scheduled to be at McKale Center for the 1 p.m. scrimmage that will be televised by Pac-12 Networks Arizona live and tape delayed on the Pac-12 Networks at 9:30 p.m.
— Class of 2016 power forward prospect Lauri Markkanen, who is tabbed as Finland’s next great NBA hopeful. He is a 6’11” and 240-pound stretch power forward who matches well with any player at his position in this year’s class. Arizona will have a void at power forward next season with Ryan Anderson and Mark Tollefsen gone after their only season with the Wildcats.
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— Class of 2017 point guard Troy Brown, like the three other players from his class in Tucson this weekend are visiting unofficially. Brown is a 6’5″ and 185-pound point guard prospect from Las Vegas whom Arizona has recruited since his freshman season in high school. Expect Arizona freshman Ray Smith of Las Vegas to be someone who can show Brown that moving to Tucson from there is a logical choice. I wrote a story on Brown during an AAU tournament in Las Vegas last year in which Brown said UNLV will always be in his top five but Arizona is right there.
— Class of 2017 center Brandon McCoy of San Diego is thought to have hometown San Diego State, Cal and Oregon at the top of his list. But plenty of time remains in the recruitment of the high school junior who stands at 6’11” and 200 pounds. McCoy was 6’3 as an eighth-grader, 6’9″ as a freshman and is now at 6’11” and may grow to be a 7-footer. McCoy is the scholarly type. Other than being an NBA player he wants to be a pharmacologist or maybe a marine biologist.He won an award a couple of years ago for a middle school science fair project in which he extracted DNA from a banana.
— Class of 2017 small forward Jarred Vanderbilt of Bellaire, Texas. Most of the Big 12 schools have an early advantage for Vanderbilt, who is a prime target for Arizona who is with only one true wing player this season — Smith. He stands at 6’8″ and 200 which means he has terrific size to be a small forward in college.
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Site founder and award-winning sports journalist Javier Morales has published his first e-book, “The Highest Form of Living”, a fiction piece about a young man who overcomes a troubled upbringing without his lost father and wayward mother through basketball and hope. His hope is realized through the sport he loves. Basketball enables him to get past his fears. His experience on the court indirectly brings him closer to his parents in a unique, heartfelt way. Please order it at Amazon (for only $4.99) by clicking on the photo:
— Arizona Athletics (@AZATHLETICS) October 17, 2015