Finley is a solid 'steal'

Coming out of spring ball the Arizona Wildcat coaching staff made it a priority to seriously hit the recruiting trail hard. Starting on the first day they were allowed to go out to high schools around the country, the staff got a great early jump on some other schools. The fast paced agenda set out by Arizona Recruiting Coordinator Dan Berezowitz paid off early and often as the Cats started piling up verbal commitments throughout the summer.

After getting their quarterback of the future, Willie Tuitama, in June the staff set their sights on talented athletes for Tuitama to throw to. Less than two months after Tuitama committed the Wildcat coaches got a commitment from one of the most gifted pass catchers in the entire nation in Diboll, Texas stud Jermichael Finley. Not only is Finley an extremely talented pass catcher, he is a solid basketball prospect also and he will walk on and play basketball for Lute Olson as well.

While in Las Vegas for a tournament with his AAU basketball team, Finley decided to make a quick trip to Tucson to see the Arizona campus and talk to the Wildcat coaches.

"It was real nice," said Finley in July. "I liked it a lot and I knew that is where I wanted to go to school. The chance to play for Coach (Mike) Stoops and Coach (Lute) Olson is great. I am looking forward to showing what I can do."

Finley, who is 6-feet-4 inches tall and weighs in at 210 pounds, recently, spoke about what he expects to do once in Arizona.

"I just want to go in and change the program," commented Finley. "I just want to come in and play hard. I want to get out wide so they can throw me balls in the end-zone. If they throw it up I am going to go up and get it."

In today's world of college sports the two sport athlete is starting to make a serious comeback and Finley falls into the category of being a legitimate prospect in both football and basketball. Finley knows that there are good things that can come of playing football and then going straight onto the basketball court.

"The reason why it is a good thing to play football first and then go and play basketball is that I'll be real strong," said Finley. "I can go in and dominate people with my strength (on the basketball court)."

In his senior season Finley led his Diboll, Texas High School team to the playoffs but their run ended early as they were beat in the first round by the team from Jasper, Texas.

"We didn't do to good," he remarked. "We got it together in the end but we lost in the first round. Jasper is a good team."

While Finley is humble publicly he knows the value of his skills on the gridiron and he knows he could have helped his team more if given the chance.

"They didn't get the ball to me," quipped Finley. "If they got the ball to me we would have been playing a couple more weeks."

In recent weeks internet rumors have sprung up about Finley possibly not being a firm commitment to Arizona and him possibly taking additional visits. According to the man himself that could not be further from the truth.

"I'm a pretty firm commitment," he said. "No sir, I'm not taking any other visits. Texas A&M has been recruiting me really hard and calling me and sending me a lot of mail but I am going to Arizona and I am looking forward to getting there."

Finley will take his official visit to Tucson in December when he can get away from his basketball responsibilities. There is no question that Mike Stoops and the Arizona Football program have landed one of the best all around athletes in the nation. There is also no question that Lute Olson, who will get the services of Finley for free, has gotten the steal of the year.


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