Jennings shows his stuff in pick-up

Friday wasn't the first time Brandon Jennings had played on the McKale Center floor. Far from it.. However, it was the first time the young point guard has played at the arena since he committed to the Cats this summer.

Jennings did not disappoint. While it was not the most dominating performance I have seen for the 2008 point guard prospect, it was a very good one against older competition. Jennings did not back down and held his own with the 2007 edition of the Wildcats.

That should come as no surprise. It would have been a shock to see Jennings playing timid. After all this is the kid who was running the show for the SoCal Elite as a sophomore-to-be. If you can shine on a team that included Chase Budinger, Taylor King and Taj Gibson, while going head-to-head with the likes of O.J. Mayo, you shouldn't have any problems playing alongside your future teammates.

The thing that jumps out at you is Jennings' quickness. He was not only arguably the quickest player on the floor, but could be one of the quickest players ever to don a Wildcat uniform. Considering some of the great athletes who have played for Lute Olson, that is saying quite a bit.

Jennings pushed the tempo whenever he could. He's at his best in the open floor and his teammates were all too happy to oblige. He had a number of highlight reel passes, but that was also his problem. Sometimes he was so intent on making a spectacular pass, that he got stuck making that play and missed out on an easier pass.

For much of the day Jennings went head-to-head with Jerryd Bayless. The two have had a competitive, but friendly, rivalry for years and it continued on Friday. Both players made their share of buckets, but neither was able to completely dominate the other.

Jennings was not the only impressive player on the floor. Jerryd Bayless and Chase Budinger are both playing great. Both took turns making some real highlight reel plays. Jordan Hill has been attacking the rim like it owes him money. If he is within five feet of the bucket, he is trying to slam it home. All of the guys look good, in fact most appear to be in unbelievable shape. One observer joked "I've got some spare body fat if Jerryd Bayless needs any". The freshman is in unbelievable shape. That same observer noted "Fendi Onobun looks like a statue. It looks like someone carved him out of stone."

Now the question is whether Onobun will have the game to match the body. One very interesting aspect of his game on Friday was the fact that he was looking to block shots. The Cats need a shot blocker and if it has to be an undersized power forward, so be it. The Wildcats have available minutes in the post and need someone to step up.

Freshman wing Zane Johnson did not heat up until late in the game. Both he and Bayless were also sporting new tattoos on their upper backs. Johnson's appeared to be some winged figure.

Fellow freshman Alex Jacobson was a pleasant surprise. He is in pretty good shape and was showing decent timing on blocked shots and rebounds. He still needs a lot of work, but it was good to see him playing well.

PG Nic Wise sat out the pick-up. He apparently has a sprained ankle.


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