The news of Mark Lyons committing to the Arizona Wildcats over Kentucky and Kansas sent waves through the college basketball world. Not only does it give Sean Miller a legitimate point guard to run his very talented team next season, but it also means the Pac-12 could become very scary next season.
After an awful season in 2011-12, the conference could have two legitimate Final Four contenders in Arizona and UCLA. And do not count out teams like Colorado or Stanford, either, as they have plenty of talent returning to campus in the fall. National basketball writers have started to take notice of this, which can only mean good things for the Pac-12.
National basketball analyst Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports:
The addition of Mark Lyons is another coup 4 the PAC-12. Arizona now joins UCLA as a legitimate national contender. West coast ball is back.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) May 6, 2012
Jeff Goodman of CBS Sports also loves what Lyons could mean for UA:
There's no denying Mark Lyons' talent. Could make Arizona Final Four team. Key is Lyons maturity and whether he can run the point.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanCBS) May 6, 2012
Certainly some high praise from some of the most respected college basketball writers in the country.
This young Arizona team will take some time to gel -- eight new players will make their way to campus in the coming months, six of which figure to play immediately -- but the talent is certainly in place.
Sean Miller is among the hottest young coaches in the nation right now and he will have his best chance yet to make a Final Four. Now it's just a matter of bringing everyone together and improving each day in practice until March Madness arrives.
For more on the Wildcats, check out AZ Desert Swarm.