Arizona basketball coach Sean Miller was reportedly recorded arranging a $100,000 payment to freshman star Deandre Ayton. Miller denies it, but the FBI and NCAA are surely looking into Tuscon.
Which is why it’s clearly time for Ayton and other top Wildcats to leave town.
Arizona honored Ayton, junior shooting Allonzo Trier and sophomore small forward Rawle Alkins during its senior-night ceremony, acknowledging all three will turn pro after the season.
Ayton is a potential No. 1 pick. Paying $100,000 for him would be a bargain. The 7-footer is a beast – strong and fluid. He’s an elite finisher and rebounder. His jumper, with range beyond the college 3-point arc, suggests an incredible ceiling. But he can fall in love with his still-developing outside shot, and there are questions about his work ethic and defensive tenacity. Still, Ayton presents a package teams will covet very high in the draft.
Trier and Alkins are more likely second-rounders, though either could climb into the first round. They’re both scorers with good range and question marks – athleticism for Trier, size for the 6-foot-4 Alkins.