Utah power forward eyeing Tourney teams

Although the Wildcat coaches are very much focused on the NCAA Tournament, they have not shirked their recruiting responsibilities. They are contacting players and making sure that they are watching Arizona on television. One player who is keeping an eye on the NCAA Tournament is Daniel Deane.

Deane is one of the top power forwards in the west and a top target for the Wildcats. Coaches are allowed only one phone call per month, but have other ways of contacting players.

"They (Arizona) mentioned in an e-mail that they want to come out here in late April to see me," Deane said. "That's cool."

The 6-7, rugged power forward is the type of player many top programs are really starting to covet. He's strong enough to dominate at the college level, but not quite tall enough that he's going to be able to test the NBA Draft right out of high school.

Deane finished up his junior season a few weeks back and has been taking some time off from basketball to rest and concentrate on his studies.

"It's the last week of the quarter and I'm focused on that right now," Deane said. "Next week is Spring Break and after that I'll be going at it hard."

For now the recruiting scene has not changed for him. He's still looking at Arizona, Marquette, UCLA, Stanford, Utah and Oregon. He has not backed off of his original timetable of a November decision but admits that anything can happen.

Rodney Tention has been the lead recruiter and seems to be doing a very good job with the recruitment.

Both the Utes and the Cats are still alive in the Tournament and Deane is keeping an eye on the schools.

"They are doing well," he noted. "I watch their games. It's cool."

Right now Deane will have his focus on March Madness and his schoolwork, but expect him to be back on the hardwood very soon. He's a skilled big man who knows the value of hard work.

"I'll be getting back into the groove of things very soon."

CAT TRACKS' ANALYSIS: From all indications, the Cats love Deane and are going to make him a priority recruit. The same is also true of the hometown Utes. The Utes have the advantage of being his parents' alma mater. He's genuinely wide-open and will be until he starts taking visits and the summer recruiting season heats up.

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