On Tuesday, Greg Hansen of the Arizona Daily Star said on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station that Sean Miller stopped recruiting in September after the Arizona Wildcats were first implicated in the college basketball corruption and bribery scandal.
That, basically, Miller had given up because he knew what was coming.
“My guess is when the FBI raided his home early (on) that one morning, the same morning they raided (former assistant coach) Book Richardson’s home, he realized it was all over,” Hansen told Bickley & Marotta. “That is just my opinion. He knew there were things out there that would implicate him.”
But, this is just not true. Arizona has been recruiting since September. In fact, its recruiting efforts picked up steam in February.
Here is some evidence of UA’s recent activity:
- Three-star forward Sam Froling took an official visit to Arizona in December (he later committed to Creighton).
- When the Wildcats were in Washington in February, Miller offered three prospects: P.J. Fuller, MarJon Beauchamp, and Jaden McDaniels (you can read about them here). All three are high four-star prospects.
- Only a few days later, Miller offered 2018 Southern California guards Tevian Jones and Devonaire Doutrive. Two four-star prospects.
- On Feb. 13, Miller watched 2020 five-star point guard Nico Mannion, a Phoenix product ranked 24th in his class.
- On Feb. 19, Arizona offered 2019 five-star forward Jeremiah Robinson-Earl. It is believed he unofficially visited the UA, too.
The story that summed up Hansen’s interview on ArizonaSports.com was later updated to say that Hansen believes Arizona stopped recruiting “at a high level” in September, but even that is a stretch.
Now, that is not to say Arizona isn’t having recruiting struggles — it clearly is. Shareef O’Neal just decommitted because of the ESPN wiretap report (and then committed to UCLA), leaving Brandon Williams as UA’s only 2018 commit.
But that has so much more to do with the cloud hovering over the program because of the FBI investigation and Miller’s future at Arizona than his actual recruiting efforts.
That became clear when several elite 2018 prospects immediately dropped Arizona from consideration once the probe went public. Recruits of that caliber don’t want to jump into an uncertain situation in what could be their only year of college basketball, hence why even blue-blood North Carolina had trouble landing them while it was under investigation.
It’s not because Miller stopped recruiting. That never happened.
Follow Ryan Kelapire on Twitter at @RKelapire