Even though her son isn't an Arizona Wildcat just yet, Doris Ward has had her eyes exclusively on the program since her son committed to Sean Miller back in September.
And although Josiah Turner is still wrapping up his high school education, she is proud of the way her son's future team performed in the NCAA tournament.
"I watch all of the games, and I thought it was a magnificent run," Ward said. "I thought they did well. I thought the kids played hard and together. Coach Miller was great, and I thought it was great until the very end."
Ward had the chance to talk to her son during Arizona's tournament run, and insists she wasn't the only one impressed by UA.
"Josiah is doing great," Ward said. "We talked during the games and he thought the games were great. He was excited about their run."
Turner has spent the final semester of his senior year at the Quality Education Academy in Winston-Salem, North Carolina after leaving Sacramento High School. Many believe that the move cost Turner his shot at the McDonald's All-American game, but Ward insists the two of them aren't worried about his not being selected for the game.
"I understand that there are a lot of politics involved in that," Ward said. "I think his leaving in the middle of the year did a lot of harm. We're over that now, and he's just getting ready for the next step of his life, which is college.
"Of course at first understandably we were upset he didn't make it. At this point in our lives we're over it, and everyone who has seen him play understands who he is and what he can do."
Despite being left out of the game, Ward isn't sure that not being selected is something will motivate Turner moving forward.
"I don't know if that's going to motivate him or not," Ward said. "I don't know if Josiah thinks along those terms. I think he just comes to play hard and is ready to go to Arizona. I'm not sure if it plays a part that much in his life."
Since Turner, Nick Johnson, and Sidiki Johnson gave their letters of intent to Arizona in the fall, the Wildcats were able to bring Angelo Chol to make a stellar four-man class. Ward is glad to have Chol in the fold and thinks each of the freshmen will be able to make a difference.
"A few years ago Angelo played with Josiah, so he know how he plays," Ward said. "I think it's an excellent pickup. I think all of the guys coming in will help a lot.
"Obviously if Derrick Williams leaves there's going to be a hole to fill, but with those guys that are coming in, they're humble kids and I think they'll all contribute to Arizona basketball."
With the run to the Elite Eight, as well as UA's success recruiting, Ward feels fortunate to be a part of such a special time for the program, and is undoubtedly excited about her son's choice of college.
"I'm very excited about everything that is going on in Tucson and everything going on with Arizona basketball," Ward said. "It's a blessing to be a part of something like that. Arizona is just great with the fans, the players, and the coaches. Josiah couldn't have picked a better place."
With all the positivity and momentum surrounding the program, Ward believes that with Turner and the rest of the class of 2011 in the fold, UA will have one of the most complete backcourts in the country, and is poised to make deep runs in the tournament for years to come.
"I think they can get right back there," Ward said. "I think they can get even further. I think with or without Derrick Williams, of course you're a lot better with him, but without him I think they have every position filled and they have a great team.
"Solomon Hill and others will have to do some more scoring, but I think with Momo (Jones), Josiah, Nick, and Kyle Fogg they could possibly be the best defensive backcourt in the Pac-10."
Obviously, the legacy of the class of 2009 will be its ability to rescue Arizona basketball when it was at a crossroads and near the brink of falling from college basketball's elite.
With UA back on top in the Pac-10 and a number nine ranking nationally to finish the season, it's clear the class of 2009, led by Williams, Hill, and Jones, has brought UA back.
Ward hopes that with her son joining the program, he and his teammates' legacy will be one filled with banners, accolades, and trophies.
"I'm hoping their legacy will be that in a few years they won a National Championship," Ward said. "These are the guys Sean Miller handpicked to bring Arizona a Final Four and a National Championship."
Doris Ward excited about son's future
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