Arizona Wildcat freshman forward Grant Jerrett is heading to the NBA, after one disappointing season in Tucson. The rumor was confirmed today, after many days of speculation. Jerrett becomes only the 2nd (Jerryd Bayless) Wildcat in the history of the program to head to the NBA after just one season of college basketball.
This is the definition of a head scratcher, as Jerrett only averaged 5.2 points and 3.6 rebounds per game for the Wildcats. He is expected to be a 2nd round pick in the draft, and will more than likely be sitting on an NBA bench or stuck in the D league for the next few years. Had he come back to Arizona he would have been an important piece to a team that is expected to be a National title contender next season. When you compare this to a guy like Marcus Smart of the Oklahoma State Cowboys who would have been a top 3 pick in the NBA draft, but decided to come back to school, it is hard to imagine what Jerrett is thinking. One possibility is that the NBA draft will be loaded next season, so he may have ended up losing ground by coming back to Tucson. He may have had to wait 2-3 more yeras to be a first round pick, and that doesn’t sound good to some players. The guaranteed money, alongside learning from pros has disintegrated the talent in college basketball in recent years, and this is just another case of it.
The Wildcats will be able to withstand Jerrett’s decison with Kaleb Tarczewski, Brandon Ashley, Aaron Gordon, Angelo Chol, and Matt Korchek all capable frontline players. Jerrett is the best shooter out of this bunch mentioned, being a true stretch 4, but the other players leave the Wildcats in great shape. The loss will be felt, but as always we wish any ex-Wildcat good luck in the future.