Eastern Washington transfer Kim Aiken Jr., once an Arizona commit, has reopened his recruitment from Washington State, according to ESPN’s Jeff Borzello.
Eastern Washington transfer Kim Aiken Jr. tells ESPN he’s reopened his recruitment. Committed to Washington State in the spring, but never enrolled. First-team All-Big Sky guard/forward, Defensive POY in the league. 11.3 PPG, 8.4 RPG.— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) July 29, 2021
Aiken committed to the UA in early April, then reopened his recruitment later that month when the Wildcats fired Sean Miller. It’s unclear if Arizona, now coached by Tommy Lloyd, is still interested in Aiken, but a reunion makes sense. The Wildcats need frontcourt depth and Aiken is now one of the top forwards on the transfer market.
The Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Aiken averaged 11.3 points, 8.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks per game at EWU this past season. Known for his versatility, he shot 43.8 percent from the field, 32 percent from 3 and 81.7 percent from the free throw line.
Arizona only has 11 scholarship players—two under the NCAA maximum—with Azuolas Tubelis, Christian Koloko and Oumar Ballo being the lone post players.
Lloyd acknowledged earlier this month that Arizona is “cutting it thin” in terms of depth, but also said the Wildcats wouldn’t add any more players unless they “really add to the mix here.”
Should Arizona head into the season with the roster as currently constructed, they are likely going to play a lot of small play to make up for their lack of size.
“Traditionally in the past, I’ve been really comfortable playing two bigs together and so having another guy might give us a little more depth and more opportunities,” Lloyd said. “But if we don’t, I feel like we have guards with good size. We could play our own version of small ball and I think we’d be pretty good at it.”