'05 big man eyeing Arizona

The Wildcats are still hard at work on the class of 2004, but that does not mean that the players in 2005 are not receiving attention. Just exactly what the Cats need remains to be seen, but you can bet the big man position will be a covet spot. One of the best big men happens to live on the West Coast and he has his eye on Arizona already.

Amir Johnson is already getting rave reviews as a post player. At 6-9 and 205 pounds, he has great size and his instincts are top notch. The big man from Los Angeles (Verbum Dei) is still developing as a player but he has great athleticism and is a tremendous shot blocker. He also possesses a nice shooting touch, making him a serious threat to score.

Despite already being a five-star recruit as a post player, Johnson believes he can develop into a combo-forward. Considering his athleticism, it is not out of the realm of possibility.

"Like Kevin Garnett, that's how I want to be," Johnson said. "My strengths are in the post, but outside I can dribble a little bit and I'm working hard to get better."

Right now he lists Maryland, Kansas and Arizona as his favorites, but admits it is very early in the recruiting process and other teams can certainly make up ground.

"I'll probably go through the whole process," Johnson confessed. "I don't want to rush things. I'll pick the school that is best for me." In addition to improving his perimeter game, Johnson wants to bulk up some more. He has already added some muscle but thinks that a playing weight of 225 is very realistic.

Whether he further develops as a combo-forward or stays inside, there is no doubt that Amir Johnson will be one of the more sought after prospects on the West Coast next year. His athleticism and natural talents make him more than a little intriguing.

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