Lyons excited about future

Mark Lyons is participating in the LeBron James Skills Academy and has been impressive. Read on for his thoughts on who will lead the team, what his goals are, if he can run the point, and more.

LAS VEGAS - Mark Lyons is having a very memorable summer. He chose to play for Arizona next year, graduated from Xavier University, was invited to the Deron Williams Skills Academy, moved to Tucson and is now participating in the LeBron James Skills Academy.

Lyons, along with Solomon Hill, has been going through extensive workouts since Friday in Las Vegas while also doing a bit of pick-up basketball. With his versatility, Lyons has been playing both point and off the ball, but says that the opportunity of being on the court at Lebron James is a big deal for him.

"It's a great opportunity," said Lyons. "I'm going against some of the best guys in the country. You get the exposure of going up against the guys that the scouts think are the best for the next level. When you go up against these guys you see what they got, you learn things and you see what you can do on them and Solomon [Hill]."

Besides his many physical attributes on the court, NBA scouts and media are able to see some of his intangibles as well. Perhaps no player is more vocal during drills amongst the college players than Lyons.

"It's natural," explained Lyons. "As a point guard you have to be vocal. If you are not a vocal point guard then I think you are doing a bad job. You have to direct everybody out on the court. If you're not doing that, then nobody will know where to go and everyone gets confused."

Lyons has done a great job of attacking the basket and hitting jump shots all weekend. He has been a bit reluctant to score at will, but definitely shows flashes that he can get hot in a hurry.

The future Arizona Wildcat thinks he's been really productive during the camp.

"I think I have been doing really well," said Lyons. "I'm finding my teammates and passing up shots I normally would take to show the [NBA] scouts that I can run the team."

Lyons will soon return back to Tucson and Arizona officially will have all players on the roster for the 2012-2013 in Tucson. The Wildcats leave for the Bahamas in August and will get their first taste of what the offense will look like with Lyons running the show.

The New York native is appreciative of his chance to be a part of a strong Arizona team.

"[Sean Miller] was the first person to ever recruit me, so for him to want me back on his team and to lead his team to a place they haven't been under him is a great opportunity for me and I'm glad he has the respect for me to bring me here," said Lyons.

Besides being a natural scorer, Lyons has done a good job of finding teammates and being a playmaker all weekend. He is going to see skepticism around his ability to run the point, but he says he is not too worried about it.

"People are going to say I can and people are going to say I can't," explained Lyons. "I never really worry about that. I played with an All-American last year and I still averaged almost four assists. People are going to say it, but all I can do is prove that I am during the season."

Lyons has proved that he is a competitor, but has a love for the game along with all of the other campers in attendance. He and Solomon Hill have been able to work hard together and for Arizona, this piece is extremely important between the two seniors.

"We're really connecting right now," said Lyons of Hill. "As senior leaders we have to have that bond, so when it's our time to direct our team we both know what we want them to do. He's the senior leader and I'm the point guard, but this is his team. He's been here three years and this will be his fourth. I'm not trying to come in and take over the team. I just want to run it. It's his team and I just want to run it."

Lyons and Hill aren't the only Wildcats connection at the camp, as one of the camp coaches is former Arizona player and assistant coach, Miles Simon. Simon has been working closely with both current Wildcats, who have been extremely receptive to all of the coaching they have been getting.

Simon and Lyons have met before and the young Wildcat has great things to say about the former Final Four MOP.

"That's my man," said Lyons. "We've been talking ever since the Deron Williams camp. He's a Final Four MVP, so I have a lot of respect for him and hopefully I can do the same thing he did."

Lyons is starting to understand what it means to be a part of the Wildcat family and says Tucson has been a highlight so far.

"It's wonderful, it's a beautiful place," said Lyons. "It's hot and I'm not used to that weather but it's a beautiful place. I feel at home, honestly. I'm not just saying that, but everybody has welcomed me with open arms and I'm really happy to be there."

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