Arizona basketball: Assistant coach Book Richardson rejoins team

USA TODAY Sports

Sean Miller and the Arizona Wildcats announced assistant Book Richardson has returned from an unspecified leave of absence.

Arizona basketball assistant Book Richardson officially returned to the team Friday after missing nearly a full month due to unspecified health issues, the team announced.

Per a statement published by the Arizona Daily Star:

"I'm happy and thankful to be returning to the team at this time," Richardson said in UA's statement this morning. "I want to thank (Arizona AD) Greg Byrne, Coach Miller and the entire University of Arizona family, as well as everyone who reached out to me during this time, for their support. I'd also like to thank my wife, Erin, and my children, Chasidy, Sere, Chanel, E.J. and Jaylen, for looking after me during my time at home. It's great to be back, and I'm looking forward to a successful season."

Richardson left the team just as practice wound up, and his return signals good news both from a personal and Arizona-wide perspective.

For the Wildcats, Richardson's return means stability on the recruiting trail.

The Pac-12 is starting to catch up, even if Arizona was far-and-away the favorite picked to win the conference this upcoming season. Colorado, UCLA and Cal have the chops to gain ground on Sean Miller's team, and Oregon has been doing just fine itself.

On Friday, Houston transfer Joseph Young gained eligibility to play immediately for Dana Altman's Ducks. Young averaged 18 points per game and was a deadly three-point shooter last season with the Cougars, and UA was reportedly one of the few teams he considered as a transfer destination.

With Aaron Gordon being a near given to head to the NBA and with others on Arizona's roster having the potential to do the same, Richardson's return is a good sign.

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