Since Tuesday night’s instant-rafters worthy Champions Classic, all the rage in college basketball has centered around Jabari Parker’s poise and NBA-ready game, Andrew Wiggins’ explosiveness and late game heroics and Julius Randle’s tenacity on the block.
In terms of super diaper dandies, Arizona’s Aaron Gordon – the fourth ranked high school recruit behind the aforementioned trio and MVP of both this year’s McDonald’s All American Game and FIBA U-19 Championships – should make a case all season as to why his name deserves to be mentioned in the top overall pick conversation of next June’s insanely-anticipated draft. The Wildcats improved to 3-0 last night after a tough 69-60 road win over San Diego State. Junior guard Nick Johnson led Arizona with 23 points, getting to the line eight times.
Yet, it was Gordon who filled the stat sheet proving he is a playmaking combo forward with 16 points, eight rebounds, two assists, three steals and two blocks, including a critical and-one with less than 90 seconds left in the game after SDSU evaporated a double-digit Arizona lead.
‘Zona should move into the top five following Duke’s loss. But much of the country probably won’t get a true look until later in the season. Blame “East Coast bias,” but there is one early season test Gordon will have the chance to put his foot down and prove to America he’s much more than a Blake Griffin doppleganger. That’s a college football-less Saturday, December 14 at Michigan, which should be a Top 10 blockbuster (possibly even top five).*
Related — Gordon Belongs With Top Freshmen [ESPN]
* – Well, minus the Army/Navy game.