Sean Miller: The John Calipari Of The West Coast


When you look at the top programs in the country, they all have one thing in common, great recruiting coaches, coaches that know what it takes to get their players to the next level.

With the one-and-done rule in effect, it makes recruiting even more difficult. Most recruits know if they’ll be a one-and-done, which coaches are fine with, but it’s the struggle of pushing so hard for a recruit that you know will only be there in one year. It makes you think if it’s really worth it for the program, especially when you can be recruiting more talent committed to getting better year after year.

Sean Miller seems to have the right balance in his recruiting game. Come play in the McKale Center, which has been sold out for over a decade, home of the most NBA Draft picks in the country, the list goes on and on. Since Miller’s arrival, he’s brought in 13 five-star recruits and sent five guys to the league.

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The brief appearances of Derrick Williams, Grant Jerrett and Aaron Gordon, mixed with the commitment of Solomon Hill and Nick Johnson; Miller can work with it all. Many anticipate Stanley Johnson is a one-and-done, with Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Brandon Ashley thinking NBA Draft after this season. These top NBA prospects are what put your program on the map, but Miller knows the game is more about the stars these kids are labeled with.

It’s not the high profile guys that Miller should get praised for. It’s the guys that make Arizona a players program. Hill, Johnson, Ashley, Kaleb Tarczewski and so on. The guys who stay in school to develop their game so that they are well prepared for the NBA.

Then you start mixing in the recruits that need development, the talented guys that will play all four years in position to make it to the league. You look at Gabe York as the perfect example, he took some time to develop into his role, but by his senior year he could be one of the most efficient players in the country, heading into the draft.

The same goes for Elliot Pitts and even this years recruiting class with PJC, Dusan Ristic and Craig Victor. For all we know, they could develop into NBA prospects over the summer, although early in the season, it seems as if these guys are committed to the program and their development. You need those role players who you know will work hard and stick with the program, giving the team a solid foundation while recruiting high profile guys.

Miller will bring in the #1 recruiting class in the nation next fall, with a healthy mix of recruits. With five-star recruits in Justin Simon, Allonzo Trier and Ray Smith, along with four-star center Chance Comanche, Miller has a solid blend of talent.

We’re a few months away from signing day and Miller looks to add another five-star recruit in Ivan Rabb or Stephen Zimmerman. With about four or five projected starters leaving this year, albeit graduation or NBA Draft, Miller will already have the pieces in place and lineups running through his mind to compete for championships next season.