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Sonoran Hot Reads: Richard Jefferson reminisces about 2001 Final Four team

There's no bad time to remember that team

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Weird things are happening around the Cleveland Cavaliers, but that isn't stopping Richard Jefferson from taking some time to think back to the 2001 Final Four team that lost to Duke in the National Championship Game. One thing that stands out is Jefferson's take on the talent pool in college basketball now compared to then:

How is the NCAA Tournament different now than it was in your day?

Jefferson: How is it different? The talent pool is crap. The talent is terrible.

If you don't think so, here are the players from my Final Four just 15 years ago. Jason Richardson, Zach Randolph, Charlie Bell from Michigan State. Me, Gilbert Arenas, Luke Walton and Loren Woods at Arizona. From Duke, you had Chris Duhon, Jay Williams, Carlos Boozer, Shane Battier and Mike Dunleavy, Jr. At Maryland, there was Juan Dixon, Steve Blake, Lonny Baxter and Chris Wilcox. And that was just the Final Four!

And we were a 2-seed.

That Final Four from 15 years ago had 15 players who played 10 years and left an impact on the NBA. Now you look at the Final Four, it's hard to watch the games.

You get these Butlers and Wichita States and VCUs and they make good runs because they have older, more developed guys that are used to playing together. And they're going against mostly freshman and sophomores.

So Richard Jefferson is officially get-off-my-lawn guy. He also claims Channing Frye ruined Arizona forever:

Oh yeah, they ruined the program!! Mainly Channing. Channing's team had a 16-point lead with four minutes to play in the Elite 8 and lost it. And Arizona hasn't been to the Final Four since then.

They've been to the Elite 8 a few times since then, but it's not the same.

- UNLV is going about their coaching search in a very unique, poor way. Stanford hired UAB head coach Jerod Haase as their new head man

- It was T.J. McConnell's birthday on Friday, and apparently some Sixers got him some interesting birthday gifts:


- It's an important weekend of recruiting on campus, so I took a look at one part of what goes into a successful recruiting trip

- This is a list of just some of the visitors the Wildcats have in Tucson right now


- The Wildcats dropped a tight one to UCLA 4-3. Bobby Dalbec was supposed to be Saturday's starter, but threw two innings and picked up the loss on Friday. Jay Johnson said after the game he wasn't sure who would start Saturday

- ASU's Ryan Hingst threw a no-hitter, and this tidbit on him calling his mom afterwards is pretty good stuff

- It was a busy day for former Wildcats. Jett Bandy was optioned to Triple-A by the Angels, and Robert Refnsyder took a ball off the face. Apparently Refsnyder has been struggling at third base defensively all spring, and it may cost him a roster spot when the season starts next weekend

- I talked to 2017 RHP commit Roman Phansalkar about some of the things that went into his decision to choose Arizona over a few national powerhouses


- The Cats lost to Utah 7-3 in nine innings

Other sports

- Beach Volleyball didn't drop a single match in two contests on Friday afternoon against Cal State Bakersfield and New Mexico

Men's swimming and diving is still in 16th at the NCAA Championships

- Men's golf is not having a very good weekend

Men's tennis lost to Stanford

- Track and Field is in Tempe this weekend competing against the Big Ten

Tucson news

- A jeep crashed into a building near Grant and I-10, injuring four people

- A mountain lion was killed after a bighorn was found dead

- Edward Snowden spoke at the U of A via Skype, which is interesting and kind of cool