Ashley to narrow list

Five-star forward Brandon Ashley is set to narrow his list in a few weeks and it appears that Arizona is in good shape.

Brandon Ashley further solidified himself as a top 10 prospect Saturday night at the EYBL Tournament in Torrance with a 34-point, nine-rebound performance against Howard Pulley Panthers. Part of Ashley's dominance was an improved jump shot that he has added to an already effective post game.

"I've been working on my outside game a lot lately," Ashley said. "I've definitely become a more versatile player. Last summer I was either high post or low post, strictly a post player. I'm working on my three-man game now too."

The 6-foot-9, 220-pound power forward continues to hear from top schools all around the country, but appears close to taking the first step towards making a decision.

"I'm going to start cutting it down pretty soon," Ashley said. "I'll probably end up with a top 10 within the next two or three weeks now. Then I'll start making my decision towards the end of the summer and the beginning of the school year."

When asked how Arizona stands in his recruitment, Ashley had nothing but good things to say about the Wildcats.

"Oh yeah, Arizona is in good shape, always," Ashley said. "They're definitely in good shape."

Newly promoted associate head coach James Whitford is leading Arizona's recruitment of the Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd prospect, but he insists that he has developed a solid relationship with the entire staff.

"Coach Whitford is definitely a cool coach," Ashley said. "The entire coaching staff is really cool people."

With Arizona as one of several schools that he is interested, Ashley kept close tabs on the Wildcats' season in 2010-11 and liked what he saw.

"I definitely watched Arizona, they were headed for the Final Four," Ashley said. "They had a great season and they had one of the best players in the country in Derrick Williams. It's definitely a good school."

After he narrows his list down, Ashley will begin to take trips to the remaining schools and try to gather as much information as possible before deciding on which school he'll ultimately sign with; although it is unclear where his destinations will be.

"I don't have any visits planned, but I'll start thinking about that later on," Ashley said. "I won't commit though before I make my visits. I definitely want to take all of my visits and learn as much as I can about my schools so I can make the best decision."

There are still several weeks to go before Ashley makes a decision, as he hopes to decide by the end of the summer or early fall and sign in the early signing period.

It can't hurt that a former Oakland Soldiers teammate and current Arizona Wildcat Nick Johnson is doing everything he can to get Ashley on board in 2012 with UA.

"He's hitting me up pretty frequently," Ashley said.

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