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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Parrom back by early December, Miller says

Mike+Christy+%2F+Arizona+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0AThe+Arizona+Wildcats+mens+basketball+team+hosted+the+UCLA+Bruins+in+a+Pacific-10+Conference+game+Thursday%2C+Jan.+27%2C+2011%2C+in+McKale+Center+in+Tucson%2C+Ariz.+The+Wildcats+beat+the+Bruins+85-74.
Mike Christy
Mike Christy / Arizona Daily Wildcat The Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball team hosted the UCLA Bruins in a Pacific-10 Conference game Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011, in McKale Center in Tucson, Ariz. The Wildcats beat the Bruins 85-74.

Arizona junior Kevin Parrom is ahead of schedule and should return to action by early December at the latest, according to head coach Sean Miller. After getting shot in the right leg on Sept. 24, Parrom now has almost all of the feeling back in his leg and is working out in full force.

The 6-foot-6 swingman has been cleared to do basketball activities without contact for up to 60 minutes and will participate in 5-on-5 play in just over a week, according to Miller. Parrom is running underwater and working out every day as he aims toward an early December return.

“He’s made a lot of progress,” Miller said. “We talked about December. I think there’s a chance optimistically that it could be before that. We’re starting to count on him joining us in early December then it all comes back to, what role will he have, how successful will he be when he plays in the game.”

Although it remains to be seen how he’ll bounce back from the injury, Parrom is expected to add experience, scoring and toughness to a team lacking in all three areas.

“When you look at our struggles off the bat, I look at Kevin as a really big part of what we’re doing,” Miller said. “Having him return to 100 percent will really be a significant boost to our performance.

“Why is that? He can really shoot the ball. He’s one player on our team who we know from his past can score 20 points a game,” Miller added. “He’s one of our most physical players. He rebounds, defensively he’s experienced. All those things are things we really need right now.”

Mayes bright spot

Although it hasn’t showed up in the box score, sophomore guard Jordin Mayes is improving on a daily basis after undergoing offseason foot surgery. Miller recently called him a month away conditioning-wise, but Mayes is on his way back to 100 percent.

“He’s the one bright spot of the last three or four days,” Miller said. “Every day he practices, you can see him return to form. We need Jordin to play well. He has great experience from a year ago, and he can really shoot the ball.”

After going scoreless and committing two turnovers in 14 minutes against Seattle Pacific, Mayes finished with two points, an assist and two steals in 18 minutes against Humboldt State. Freshman Josiah Turner remains the team’s starting point guard, although he’s far from a finished product.

“Josiah’s still very much a work in progress. Learning how to work hard every day. Transitioning from high school to college,” Miller said. “Just continuing to learn what college defense is about when guys are running off of screens. Everything’s faster.”

Chol and Kyryl to split at center

After impressing in limited time at the five against HSU, freshman Angelo Chol will back up junior Kyryl Natyazhko at center. Miller said Chol and Natyazhko will split time at the position.

“I think he can grow and be a very agile, quick five man that can complement Kyryl, be a different look, use his agility like he did in the game the other day,” Miller said. “That’s where Angelo can have the best freshman year for him.”

Arizona is expected to add more depth at center soon with senior Alex Jacobson getting closer to a return from back problems. Jacobson’s practiced only twice all year but is moving in the right direction.

“He’s for the first time showing progress,” Miller said. “It gives us a healthier feeling of more options and more depth there and that’s something we need at that position.”

Johnson to play 25 minutes a game

Miller is aiming to play freshman guard Nick Johnson around 25 minutes per game after he played 21 minutes in each of the first two exhibition games.

“That may not seem like a big difference but it is. That makes our team better,” Miller said. “I think he’ll continue to grow and develop with that bigger role.”

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