The Arizona Wildcats officially announced the addition of Georgetown transfer James Akinjo on Tuesday.
The sophomore point guard committed to Arizona in the wee hours of New Year’s Day, but head coach Sean Miller was not able to comment on him at his presser last Thursday, meaning Akinjo probably had not yet signed the necessary paperwork to make his move official.
Miller is scheduled to have his weekly press conference Tuesday afternoon, so expect to get his insight on the addition later today.
Excited to welcome James Akinjo to the family!#BearDown #APlayersProgram pic.twitter.com/XxPpU6ZTLh— Arizona Basketball (@APlayersProgram) January 7, 2020
Akinjo arrives at Arizona after an interesting stint with the Hoyas. The Richmond, California native and former four-star recruit averaged 13.4 points, 5.1 assists, and 1.3 steals per game in 40 career games (39 starts) at Georgetown, while shooting 36 percent from the field, 36.1 percent from 3, and 81.2 percent from the free-throw line.
The lightning-quick point guard was the Big East Freshman of the Year in 2018-19, but left Georgetown just seven games into the 2019-20 season. Akinjo saw his efficiency dip as a sophomore, shooting just 33.7 percent from the field and 24 percent from 3, with an assist to turnover ratio just under 2 to 1.
Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, whose team lost to the Akinjo-less Hoyas in December, had some harsh words for the new UA point guard.
“They got rid of a guy that wouldn’t pass the ball to anybody and just shot it every time and that’s why they’re good now,” Boeheim said. “They’ve got seven guys that are as good as anybody’s. Two guys weren’t really contributing at all and that other guy was throwing the ball up all the time. I know Patrick [Ewing] can’t say that but I can. I watched him play three games. He lost two games for them by himself.”
We got some insight on Akinjo from our sister site CasualHoya.com, who are high on Akinjo’s upside but agreed with Boeheim’s assessment.
“I think most Georgetown fans would agree 100 percent with Boeheim (I can’t believe I just wrote that),” Andrew Geiger told us. “Akinjo’s talent is so great that it makes it all the more frustrating when he just wouldn’t listen to (Patrick) Ewing at the end of games and tried to do too much with the ball in his hands. It’s not a coincidence that Georgetown’s recent surge was without Akinjo, as ball movement has greatly improved. It will certainly be interesting to see how Akinjo does in the desert, and you can bet Hoyas fans will be watching.”
It is unclear when Akinjo will be eligible to play for the Wildcats, but at the latest he should be good to go by the spring semester of next season.