When the teams take the court for the Red/Blue game Saturday, there will be no Lute Olson.
There will be no Kevin O'Neill.
There will be no Jeff Withey
There will be no telling what we will see.
Make no mistakes about it, Saturday's game unofficially starts a new era in Arizona basketball. Yes, everything will change come next year because there is basically no chance that Russ Pennell will get more than one year as head coach. However, that does not mean the transition has not started yet.
There is no longer any questioning whether or not Olson will be back and because of this, the way we view Arizona basketball has changed. Of course, it could still become more positive and this may be temporary, but it has still changed.
Forgetting everything that has happened in the past few weeks, Saturday will give us an opportunity to see some new things.
For starters, we get to see Brendon Lavender, Garland Judkins, and Kyle Fogg. These three new guards will play a major role this season and, excluding Lavender, many people have not seen Fogg and Judkins.
The expectations are minimal, but the players will do their best to exceed them and will have plenty of opportunity to do so. Saturday would be a good chance to start proving people wrong.
People will also get to see what Alex Jacobson is able to do in a maximized role. He has not played significant minutes while at Arizona and now he is going to be at least a 20 minute per game guy. Can he handle the pressure? Is he good enough? Like the new guards, Jacobson will have plenty to say and prove when he steps on the court.
In addition to the new players, there are the old ones that we have seen before. There is Jamelle Horne and his improved shooting touch, Fendi Onobun and his potential health, Nic Wise and his leadership, Chase Budinger and his potential to lead the country in scoring, and much more.
There should be some excitement in the air on Saturday. After all, these are the coaches and players that have decided to stay and help usher in the new era of Arizona basketball.
Red/Blue game has more excitement than past
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