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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


5-star guard Nico Mannion commits to Arizona men’s basketball

Simon Asher
Arizona Men’s Basketball Head Coach Sean Miller angrily disagrees with a foul called by a referee.

Phoenix-based 5-star point guard Nico Mannion is staying close to home. He verbally committed to the Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball team over Marquette University. Mannion ranks as the nation’s No. 13 recruit per the 247Sports Composite and the top player in the state of Arizona.

He is also the first verbal commit to UA’s 2019 class.

The 6-foot-3 guard was getting a late push in his recruitment by Duke and Kentucky, but the short drive down I-10 and the familiarity with the Wildcats enabled head coach Sean Miller and his new staff to land their biggest recruit since someone named DeAndre Ayton. 

        RELATED: A true love story: Tucson and Arizona men’s basketball

Mannion told 247Sports that he made his decision to be a Wildcat after an in-home visit with Miller and his recruiting staff earlier this week. 

The commitment moves Arizona into prime position going into the new season, recruiting-wise, in the coming months as they play host to other top recruits who have Arizona in mind. 

After the commitment of Brandon Williams, it seems that Miller has tweaked his recruiting strategy, going after the top guards in the country to build his future recruiting classes and seemingly putting less emphasis on the front court, which has been Arizona’s strength in past seasons. 

But with basketball favoring floor-spacing and shooting, it looks like Miller is adapting to the times and changing his signature pound-and-rebound playing style.

Mannion was originally scheduled to be part of the 2020 class, but after reclassifying earlier this summer, Mannion will be able to step onto campus a year earlier than scheduled, allowing more time for the playmaker to get accustomed to his new team and school. 

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