“Ray is doing great right now,” said Ray’s father, Bobby. “If I had to put it at a number I would say he is about 94 percent. He’s almost back.
“You have to remember, we were so focused on getting him back to health that he literally didn’t touch a basketball for about 7 months. Everything we did was with a goal of getting him back to being 100 percent physically.”
Smith recently upped his basketball activities.
“I would say he’s been playing for about a month or so now," Bobby said. "He looks good. Obviously he’s rusty, but there is no doubt the explosiveness is coming back and for a guy like Ray that is very important.”
It's no surprise that Sean Miller has been in Smith’s corner since day one.
“Coach Miller has been fantastic," Bobby said. "He’s been in very steady contact with us. He makes no bones about it, he expects Ray to come in and contribute early, so we’re doing everything possible to make sure that becomes a reality.
"Coach has talked about Ray getting down there to start classes June 8th, I believe. We’re leaving California right now as we speak and just seeing the day to day improvement from my son has been very impressive.”
Despite the tough loss to Wisconsin, Smith was very impressed with the Wildcats’ season.
“Listen, what did they have, a 34-4 season?" Bobby said. "I don’t care how far you go, that is an incredible season.
“And let’s be honest, there weren’t a lot of teams that were going to beat Wisconsin on that day. That was one of the most impressive shooting performances I’ve seen. Just unreal.”
Nonetheless, Smith was impressed by how Miller used his freshmen.
“When he gets a guy in there that is ready to play, he doesn’t put the clamps on him," Bobby said. "You’ve seen that two straight years.
"You obviously have to be able to do everything, but coach is about getting the best guys out there, and that is one of the things we’re excited about.”