College, High School / Aug 30, 2011 / 2:00 pm

Brandon Ashley To Arizona Makes Wildcats Scary In 2012

Brandon Ashley

Brandon Ashley (photo. Nike)

Sean Miller is rolling through the recruiting circuit heading into only his third season at Arizona. On Monday, the Wildcats’ head coach pulled in his biggest recruit yet, landing a top-5 overall prospect in the Class of 2012, Brandon Ashley, to a verbal commitment.

The 6-8, 215-pound power forward transferred this summer to Findlay Prep in Nevada following his time at Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland, and chose the Arizona over Oregon, UCLA and Kentucky. Scooping Nike U and the country’s best recruiter in Kentucky’s John Calipari is surely a sign of things to come for Miller at Arizona.

“I’m ready to commit to Arizona,” Ashley told ESPN’s Paul Biancardi. “After all the time thinking about it and getting to know Coach Miller and having two great teammates, (fellow 2012 commits Grant Jerrett and Gabe York) I knew it was the right choice for me.”

And for Miller’s crew, Ashley’s commitment gives Arizona quite possibly the best recruiting class of 2012. He joins fellow power forward Jerrett and combo guard York, both top-40 prospects.

Of course, the Wildcats might not even be done with the 2012 class. They’re still in the thick of the hunt for top-ranked Shabazz Muhammad and 7-footer Kaleb Tarczewski. In the grand scheme of things, that could make Arizona the early, early favorite for the 2012 national championship, according to Jeff Goodman of CBS.

It’s hard to argue with him, either.

By then, it’s likely that Miller’s first recruiting class, led by now-juniors Solomon Hill and Kevin Parrom, will still be around to provide the veteran leadership for the talented 2012 class. And with the 2011 pull of point guard Josiah Turner and dunk-machine Nick Johnson in the backcourt, the Wildcats will have a well-rounded mix of talent and leadership across the board.

That’s more than enough talent on the roster to make opponents shake.

What do you think? How good will Arizona be over the next two years?

Follow Kevin on Twitter at @offensivelyfoul.

Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.

Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.

Related Posts with Thumbnails
  • http://www.dimemag.com Aron Phillips

    The ‘Cats are definitely back.

  • http://fantasycouch.com Mike Mital

    best baller in the bay! congrats Easy Bo!

  • da real

    congrats to the young fella, but 2 slow jumpers and 67 dunks wont get it done on the next level. he better get quicker an stronger

  • beiber newz

    Time for some analysis of that mixtape. I’ve never heard of this player before this article. So understandably, this is the first time I’ve viewed any of his game. What I noticed…well, wasn’t anything too special. Don’t get me wrong. He for sure possesses talent, but put it in perspective. If you notice, most of the clip has him getting putback dunks. Ok, that’s nice and all, but he’s playing against students most likely with no rebounding fundamentals. Who’s searching for a man for inside position? Who was boxing out? Most times, young athletes rely on their athleticism or size (long arms/heavy set) yet lack the necessary IQ to utilize the box out (which is why guys like Chuck Hayes can start at center for an NBA team). This guy Brandon Ashley looks very athletic. Cool. But he is a power forward and displayed no familiarity to that position in this short vid. If I hadn’t read here that he was a power forward, I would have thought he was a wing player and that’s just a testament to his talent and potential. Notice, his drives are impressive, double pumping and reversing layups. That is something that skilled power forwards in the NBA are capable of (KG/Amare). Having that creative ability with the ball as a big man doesn’t guarantee stardom, but it separates you from the one’s don’t aren’t capable (Brendan Haywood/Andrew Bynum). He did display some footwork in the post with a spin move and soft touch baby floater, but that was over someone much stature. Brandon Ashley needs to focus on putting everything together, the athleticism, driving ability and post footwork. If he is coached well at Arizona and grows a couple more inches and learns to use his athleticism to his advantage against other post players, he can definitely take his game to another level.

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    ‘Zona is going to be a problem.

    @beiber.
    you started your post with “I noticed…well, wasn’t anything too special.”…. then went on about Ashley having creative ability(even compared him to KG, and Amare) nice footwork, and a soft touch.
    It sounds like you did see something special.

    “If I hadn’t read here that he was a power forward, I would have thought he was a wing player”
    High school position means shit. There are plenty of players who changed positions as they progressed through their athletic careers.

  • MadN

    @Beiber News

    So, you are saying that you’ve never heard of Brandon Ashley? Never heard his name, did not know that he even existed before this morning, yet you are going to write 1000 words breaking down his game from a 2 1/2 minuted highlight clip? Seriously? That has to be the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard.

    99.9% of all recruiting experts… the people who travel the country and watch HS basketball 12 months out of they year, they all to a man believe that Ashley is a special player. A “program changing” recruit. But you can break down his game from a 2:30 youtube clip? smh

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    That’s what I was thinking, Madn.

    It’s weird… Beiber actually praised him throughout his post. Lol.

    This is the weakest part of his post… “but he’s playing against students”
    ^ No shit Sherlock. He’s in HIGH SCHOOL.

  • beiber newz

    I didn’t compare him to KG or Amare. I simply used them as examples. THOSE ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS. An apple and a car are red, but a fruit can’t drive you to work. I simply said he can do similar things. Heck I could dribble drive and finish on a 360 layup as a power forward in highschool, but doesn’t mean I was Lamar Odom.

    Also, saying special and “TOO” special are two different things as well. Saying TOO special acknowledges that you do see the foundation of where the attention comes from, yet find things suggesting that the hype needs to be suppressed. I see Ashley’s skill, or he wouldn’t be on their mixtape. Scouts do it all the time, don’t go nitpicking what I said as if I said something wrong.

    Let em try it on you.
    You said: “It sounds like you did see something special.”

    UMMMM DUH! Here are excerpts of what I originally said:
    -He for sure possesses talent
    -looks very athletic
    -his drives are impressive
    Add to the fact I made references to his potential as well as the skills he possesses to separate him from typical bigs.

    How bout you start reading instead of skimming.

    And why are you getting at me for praising his abilities as a power forward saying that positions don’t mean anything in high school? That is besides the point. He is listed at power forward, and he is doing things that a small forward would do. Why are you making it seem out of line for anyone to point out what he does while playing that position?

  • beiber newz

    @ JAY, it would have been dumb for me to say “he is playing against students (period)

    but if you didn’t skim you would have read the full line which read : “he’s playing against students most likely with no rebounding fundamentals (period)”

  • beiber newz

    @ MADn

    The reason why I pointed out that I never know he existed, is to put it out there that all I know of him is from what I saw. Before I even went into my description of his game I stated (although I should have expanded on it) “What I noticed”

    In my head I figured it would be understood, that I am just making points off of that clip solely. It was my fault for not expanding on that. I did not want it to seem like I’ve been scouting this player so I COMPLETELY GET WHERE THE HEAT IS COMING FROM.

    Short story on why I didn’t explain that in my original post: I want to write how long the clip was, but I didn’t know how to write two and a half minutes. I wrote

    “what i noticed from this 2:30 minute clip” – looked at it and said that doesn’t sound like 2 ‘and a half’.

    then i wrote:
    “…from that 2 and a 1/2 minute clip” -looked at it and said that’s just too dragged on.

    i just skipped it all together.

    I just wanted this to be my interpretation of his game from that clip by itself.

  • MadN

    @Beiber

    That’s kind of the point. YayAreasFinest is a crew that travels around the Bay Area and to AAU tournaments around the country to film prospects and put together highlight clips… however, what you will notice is that 90% of the footage is dunks. It’s what the kids like, it’s what they want to see, the sexy side of basketball; finishing.

    What you don’t see in any of the above clips is that Brandon Ashley has A+++ lateral quickness for a player his size. He possesses very strong fundamental understanding of defensive positioning, he has post moves and counter moves far beyond his age and most importantly he sacrifices his own personal statistics for the betterment of the team concept.

    I’m not giving you grief for your analysis, it’s your opinion and you are entitled… however, if your sole knowledge of a player is from two and a half minutes of dunks, of 1-2 second clips of a guy finishing plays and you think this is grounds for an analysis of a players game and of his potential? That is simply ridiculous.

    Go watch a full game or two, or ten. You’ll have plenty of opportunity since Brandon Ashley transferred to Findlay Prep and will be on ESPN 4-5 times this year… then you can give your opinion about his potential as a basketball player.

  • beiber newz

    ok that video was almost 3 minutes long of the same repetitive dunk. And no one was contesting him on his drive dunks. Other than that, if it was a putback dunk, it was a vertical dunk. My point is that he was good, but that video of him is the same thing that would make eddy curry look good, putback dunks and vertical dunks. That video did not display what he can do. THAT IS WHY I SAID IT WAS WHAT I NOTICED. Telling me to watch 10 games is irrelevant. If a chef is taste testing and trainer chefs dish, he is going to critique what he ate. I am doing the same with this video.

  • beiber newz

    If a chef is taste testing a trainer chef’s dish,*** he is going to critique what he ate.

  • beiber newz

    To further destroy your point of me watching 10 games of his, look at what i wrote in my original post:

    I used the phrase: “What I noticed”

    later on i said: MOST OF THE CLIP has him getting putback dunks. Ok, that’s nice and all, but he’s playing against students most likely with no rebounding fundamentals. Who’s searching for a man for inside position? Who was boxing out?”

    Those questions I asked there WERE PERTAINING SOLELY TO THAT CLIP ITSELF. Not Ashley the overall player, but simply what was on THAT CLIP.

    Some more of what i said originally that supports the fact I was only talking in reference to THIS CLIP :
    “But he is a power forward and displayed no familiarity to that position in this short vid.”

    I also even pointed something out very specifically by saying: “He did display some footwork in the post with a spin move and soft touch baby floater, but that was over someone much stature.”

    So stop telling me I don’t know what I’m talking about. I was writing only on that 2 AND A HALF MINUTE VIDEO.

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    “I didn’t compare him to KG or Amare.”
    Yes you did….
    YOU –> “Notice, his drives are impressive, double pumping and reversing layups. That is something that skilled power forwards in the NBA are capable of (KG/Amare).”
    ^ Sounds like a comparison to me. I’m puzzled why you deny that. It’s written right there. You say he can do things the skilled PF in the NBA do… then you name KG and Amare. Similarly speaking, if someone told you can finish like a young Vince Carter, is that not a comparison?

    “but if you didn’t skim you would have read the full line which read : “he’s playing against students most likely with no rebounding fundamentals (period)””
    – I didn’t need to quote the whole thing. The fact remains he’s playing vs students because he himself is at that level. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how he plays at the next level.

    Look, I don’t care if you like the kid or not. I’m just calling it as I read it. You started saying he showed you nothing special… then you named special things he can do. It doesn’t mean anything either way to me… it was just a weird post.

  • beiber newz

    JAY you are acting really dumb.
    Let me break it down for you in a complex, drawn out example so your feeble mind may comprehend.

    I DID NOT COMPARE HIM TO AMARE STOUDIMIRE.
    I DID NOT COMPARE HIM TO KEVIN GARNETT.

    I SIMPLY SAID HE CAN DO WHAT SKILLED POWER FORWARDS CAN DO.
    I THEN GAVE EXAMPLES OF SOME SKILLED POWER FORWARDS.

    BREAK APART WHAT I SAID AND YOU WILL UNDERSTAND.

    EXAMPLE: The Flintstones droves devices which were equipped with rock wheels, possibly maxing out at a speed of 20 mph. A Volvo can go at least 50 mph. A Farrari can also go 50 mph if the driver wanted it to. Now, a car salesman may tell Fred Flinstone, who is interested in buying a Volvo (hypothetically speaking) that this volvo can go 50 mph like the Ferrari. It’s not really a comparison, more so saying what the car can do ITSELF. A Volvo obviously doesn’t compare to a Ferrari. I did not say anything incorrect. SKILLED POWER FORWARDS CAAAAN REVERSER LAYUP, DRIBBLE DRIVE, ETC ETC. That is what I said.
    He can do what SKILLED PF can do. I then gave examples OF SOME SKILLED POWER FORWARDS THAT CAN DO THAT AS WELL.

    If I would have said he has the same REBOUNDING PROWESS AS KG, or if I said HE CAN SHOOT JUST AS WELL AS AMARE, or if i said HE CAN DRAW FOULS JUST LIKE SHAQ those would be comparisons. I singled his skills out and simply mentions guys that can do that. It wasn’t a comparison. I said what HE CAN DO and stated who else could do that.

    And furthermore, IT ISN’T WRONG THAT I STATED HE IS PLAYING AGAINST STUDENTS WHO PROBABLY CAN’T REBOUND.

    How the hell do you think scouts look at players? They look at the competition. I’m pretty sure for however bad you are at basketball, if I put you on the court with 2nd graders, you’d get a double double. So for someone as skilled as him at getting putback dunks, I think it isn’t out of line to point pout who the defense was and how the defense approached rebounding. If they sucked at rebounding or didn’t have as much athletism or if the defense wasn’t pon his level then those putback dunk highlights should be tempered.

  • MadN

    Beiber,

    Take a deep breath and relax on the reading comprehension posts and FlintStones analogies. Lets get back to the topic at hand, shall we?

    If you are curious to know more about Brandon Ashley’s game, YayAreasFinest just posted a new video yesterday of highlights from this summer. This vid is compiled from the AAU circuit while playing against the top HS players in the country:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJh_VBKnYWk

    The original video in this story shows a whole lot of put-back dunks over short kids, because they are sanctioned HS games against teams from the Bay Area. Many of the clips from this new vid are against the best bigs in the country and if you watch this you will find that Ashley is not confined to the paint and has a lot of small forward to his game. He is very very skilled… and the kid is only 17.

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    Beiber… calm down man. You’re going nuts over there.

    “I singled his skills out and simply mentions guys that can do that. It wasn’t a comparison. I said what HE CAN DO and stated who else could do that.”
    Sorry bud. I’m still not following you. It’s still a comparison.

    Example: “That boy got range on his jumper! Only the purest shooters in the NBA have that type of range (Ray Allen/Steph Curry)
    ^Doesn’t it sound like I’m comparing some dude’s range to Ray Allen?
    Paint it how you like… when you say someone has a specific skillset, then you name guys with a similar skillset, you are making a comparison.

    Your Volvo/Ferrari example doesn’t work because when you named KG & Amare, you were giving example of just a handful pfs… an exclusive bunch. Every car can hit 50mph.

    “How the hell do you think scouts look at players? They look at the competition. ”
    I agree. but he’s at their same level. If I’m a 6’2″ 7th grader, and I’m scoring, dribbling, passing and doing all sorts of shit that not many dudes in the 7th grade aren’t doing, isn’t I impressive? Scouts aren’t saying, “Oh he’s only dominating grade school. He’s not that good.”
    This kid is head & shoulders above the competition at his level. Yes he’s killing students… but he’s a student too.
    And of course I’d kill 2nd graders man. Lmao! But I’m way past that level so it doesn’t impress nobody. If a 2nd grader is killing other 2nd graders then he’s scouts keep the kid on their radar.

  • beiber newz

    SMFH

    I’m not curious to see more of his game. You guys seem to be missing the point.

    All I wanted to do was give a neutral analytical observation of the clip I saw from an unbiased standpoint. That was my mission. That is why I let it known I hadn’t watched him before. This was to be understood from what you guys read from in original post. Please notice that I’ve been saying this over and over. I did not want it to seem like I was describing his overall game, simply what was viewed in that clip. So I’d appreciate if you, MADn, would stop trying to direct me to further material of Brandon Ashley as if I was trying to describe his FULL game. I was just speaking on the youtube clip and I hope this is very clear to you now. If you sit down and read this slowly, maybe you would see what I wrote in my original post is accurate to what pertained in the youtube clip. I do not know what he can do outside of what was in that video. I did not want it to come off as if I did. There is no other way for me to put this MADn. I hope now you would read my original post after I have layed this out to you so you can see what I said in my original is fair and unbiased.

    AS FOR JAY
    Man, you are making things really complicated. I have been telling you my intention wasn’t to compare Brandon Ashley to Kevin Garnett, yet you insist to convince me that is what I did. If you feel I did that when you read it, that is completely fair. What is not fair, is that when I’ve explained to you more than once that I did not want to make a comparison but rather a generalization, you do not want to accept that. I am telling you I was NOT comparing this kid to perennial all stars. I am not an idiot JAY.

    You then conjure up this SHOOTING example claiming that what you did is similar to what I did. Okay, well I feel if YOU calmed down and asked yourself this question you will finally see where I was coming from:

    The question: “Can skilled power forwards dribble drive with the basketball, use hang time to reverse layup, as well as use double pumps/dipsy-do layups around the basket?” The answer would be YES.

    And that was my intention. I used Garnett’s and Amare’s name simply for visualization of guys in the league who also have MOBILITY. I wasn’t comparing TALENT. Shooting the basketball is a talent. That is what you did in your recent example. You compared the talent of SHOOTING THE BASKETBALL.

    All I did in my original post was convey that Brandon Ashley is a mobile/versatile power forward (which is very true of a statement). I did not say he is AS EFFECTIVE as those guys. My comment in #16 tried to make this point clear. Here is an excerpt: “If I would have said he has the same REBOUNDING PROWESS AS KG, or if I said HE CAN SHOOT JUST AS WELL AS AMARE, or if I said HE CAN DRAW FOULS JUST LIKE SHAQ those would be comparisons.”

    Your example of saying some kid, player X, has range like Stephen Curry is a comparison. If I were to use your example in the same mindset that I was trying to convey in my original, yours would have sounded like this: “So player X loves to shoot the ball. He looks to score the ball (Kobe/Iverson).” Realize, I am not saying he can SCORE LIKE those guys, yet I am saying he has the MENTALITY to score like those guys. His GAME is to LOOK to score.

    I said Brandon Ashley likes to do a lot of stuff with the ball (in the air like double pump and reverse layup) things that traditional slow footed/heavy set bigs don’t normally do. That was my intention. Please understand that.

    You guys have been schooled and DISMISSED.

  • MadN

    He is very very good and the video posted with this story does not do him justice, which was my point from the very start. It is a poor example of his skill set. Simple as that. Seeing as how you are so stubborn as to refuse to take the 4 minutes required to watch a different mix you will obviously never know.

    Personally I really appreciate your unbiased view and have understood from the very start that your words, your take, was based solely on this video, you made that very clear from the start, no need to repeat yourself over and over again. Get it, got it from the start.

    Obviously you are not here for friendly discourse you are here to find an internet fight, which is not my thing. Best of luck with your circular logic arguments in the future.

  • DryHeat

    Ever heard of Derrick Williams?
    If not check YouTube under Arizona and 2011 NCAA’s.
    Ashley is a slimmer version of him.

    BEAR DOWN

  • beiber newz

    HAHAHA CIRCULAR LOGIC

    I’ll ignore that. Anyway, you do not seem to understand that I know a 2-3 minute video will not do ANYONE justice. You are trying to convince me to watch more film on him as if I do not know that more film will give me a broader understanding of his game. That is with anything. So if you know that I was speaking only on the video, why are you trying to give me links to more video of him as if that was my point? I wasn’t trying to gauge him as a player, so more film is kinda not making any sense.

  • beiber newz

    And you must have a sensitive soul if you think I was fighting. Grow a pair.

  • MadN

    Yes, your logic is circular, without an end and without a point other than to create an argument. The clinical definition of circular reasoning. Everyone who is reading this knows that you are simply looking to argue and are not interested in an adult conversation. You are the only one who apparently is unaware. Buddy, you are embarrassing yourself.

  • beiber newz

    You do not know what it is to look for an argument then. If you read each of my post you will find that I only addressed the issues you both had with what I said for each of my later posts. It’s easy to say someone is looking for an argument when that person is not saying what you are saying. I didn’t write anything that was not the topic at hand. If I was questioned on something, I explained it. You need to form a different definition of the word argument. Before you come here using words to make yourself feel good, try to breathe and stop trying to sound more smart than what you are.

  • http://www.zwani.com/graphics/funny_pictures/images/88funny-pictures128.jpg JAY

    “I am not an idiot JAY.”
    Just for the record… I never said you were. My whole point is that your first post was weird, to me. You usually have good shit to share (even if I disagree you usually have point to back up your opinions), but that one, #4, TO ME, was a weird read. No offense.
    Anyway, on to the next one…

  • beiber newz

    understandable JAY. i’m good.