The University of Arizona has a lot to be excited about. Head coach Sean Miller has courted on of the best recruiting classes the Wildcats has seen in recent memory. Crafty 2-guard Elliott Pitts, prolific rebounder Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and high-motored power forward Aaron Gordon look to make an immediate impact next season.
College basketball fans, scouts and coaches have all been captivated by Aaron Gordon’s unprecedented athletic ability. His jaw-dropping dunks and ferocity in the paint place Gordon in a class of his own. But there is another 5-star recruit that deserves as much media attention as Aaron Gordon. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is a projected star for this Arizona basketball team; he is not talked about like he will hold some responsibility for the success of this team next year, but he will there is no doubt about it.
Being surrounded by a prestigious basketball program, and a stellar athlete like Aaron Gordon some might ask, who is Rondae Hollis-Jefferson?
Coming out of Chester Pennsylvania, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has earned himself a spot on nationally ranked basketball program. In high school, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson dominated the court. His eyebrow raising athletic playing style and his willingness to compete on every play had scouts wanting to bring him to their programs. Florida, Memphis, Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple, Texas and Arizona all desired his services on the hardwood.
Three of the seven schools listed are already projected to make deep runs in next year’s tournament, so why did Rondae Hollis-Jefferson chose Arizona?
In an interview with draftexpress.com Rondae Hollis-Jefferson explained why he decided to commit to play for Sean Miller.
“The coaching staff, the players and the community. Everything was a great source and a great fit for me. Everyone showed me a lot of love and it was a family there, ” said Rondae Hollis-Jefferson. He wants to play for a program that places emphasis on playing as a cohesive unit.
Congratulations to recruiter Emmanuel Richardson, he acquired a great player. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson will not disappoint next season. He is a factotum type of player. He can do a bit of everything; penetration, rebounding, tenaciously defending anyone on the court and having basketball intelligence makes Rondae Hollis-Jefferson ready to play at the college level. He is bringing a tough winning mentality to Arizona, in Pennsylvania’s competitive 4-A division, Jefferson won back-to-back state championships and he played in this year’s game. With Sean Miller being in charge of Hollis-Jefferson’s development, there is no ambiguity that Hollis-Jefferson can develop into a dominate force next season.
While Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is good at everything, he is not great at one particular skill. Do not think this means he will not pan out, all this means is that he has unlimited potential. This will be scary for opposing coaches because he is already more talented than some of the other perimeter players in the Pac-12. The only negative marks against Hollis-Jefferson’s resume would be his inconsistent shooting, his skinny frame and he always favors his left hand when he plays. Fortunately for him, it is possible to turn these shortcomings into dominant traits.
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is the perfect match for the Wildcats. He possess the ability and mental fortitude to fill the vacancy that Solomon Hill left. I am not sure if he will start, but he will be given starter minutes as the first man off the bench. Expect him on the floor in late-game situations; he has a killer instincts and knows what it takes to come through in the big moment.