Miller continues to work on rotation

It was apparent on Sunday that Sean Miller is not close to having a firm rotation. Read on to see what he said about Arizona's depth, the rotation moving forward, and more.

Arizona’s increased depth continues to create questions about the starting lineup and potential rotations for Sean Miller’s Wildcats.

On Sunday, in what some found as a surprising move, Miller started T.J. McConnell, Gabe York, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Brandon Ashley and Kaleb Tarczewski.

It was assumed that freshman standout Stanley Johnson would start, but York was given the nod for the exhibition game against Cal Poly Pomona.

When asked if Johnson was happy to be coming off the bench, Miller was blunt with his answer.

“It really doesn’t matter if he’s happy,” Miller said. “It only matters if I am happy. Does Stanley have an opportunity to start? No question. We might settle into rotating through a group of six guys and mix the starting five up throughout the season.

“You can’t go by tonight’s starting lineup and say they are going to start all season, that would be foolish. If you evaluate our basketball team, our top six guys are more ready than guys seven through ten.”

There are many possibilities for a lineup that Miller can put on the floor, but the reigning Pac-12 Coach of the Year is confident in his first six.

“We’re pretty sure that our top six is fluid,” Miller explained. “Now we’re searching for the roles of everybody else and how to do it.

“I’m sure that everybody knows once you get into these games and you substitute and things don’t go well, the game can change quickly in the other team’s favor.”

Miller was also pleased with the overall effort from the players filling those spots seven through ten.

“I thought Parker did well tonight in the minutes he was given,” Miller told the media. “He did a great job of feeding the post during the game and I think he was able to find Gabe York early when he made the extra pass, and that’s what he want from him.

“Having a capable backup point guard is important. T.J. can pick up two quick fouls and you can’t play point guard 40 minutes every game, not with how we’re trying to play.”

With all the roster possibilities, there was one newcomer that did not see any action Sunday night. JUCO transfer Kadeem Allen did not record a single minute in last night’s exhibition game and it appears he is in line for a redshirt season.

“We’re debating right now on potentially redshirting him,” Miller said. “I know we could have played him and still redshirted him, but we’re working toward a decision.

“I think for Kadeem’s total career and what we have on this year’s team, I think that if we didn’t redshirt him, we wouldn’t be putting him in the best position to be a really good player at Arizona and to leave with his degree.”

Allen’s performance with the team has no correlation to his possible redshirt season.

“It’s not as if he’s lagging behind,” Miller said. “You can only play so many players and looking at the team that we have, one of these guys will get an extra year that they never would have gotten if we didn’t chose to do this.

“We’ve talked to him about, we’re going to take this week to look and see and potentially make a decision this weekend.

"He’s really fine with it because he understands that not next year, but the year after, being here three years with our strength and conditioning program, he’ll end up being in a place in our program that he maybe would not have gotten to if he didn’t decide to redshirt.”


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