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Seattle Times staff reporter Bob Condotta provides a running commentary on the Huskies.

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June 25, 2008 9:43 PM

Could Jennings move shake up Pac-10?

Posted by Bob Condotta

One reader asked me why I hadn't posted anything on here yet about Arizona recruit Brandon Jennings saying he may bypass college to play in Europe.

Part of the reason was simply that some of you beat me to it in the comments section and I figured it was covered there. But another is that I don't think it will happen, especially if he actually gets a passing test score.

For those wondering what I'm talking about, here's a good compilation of stories on the Jennings situation from the Arizona Daily Star.

Obviously, if Jennings really decides not to attend Arizona it will be a big blow to the Wildcats, who seemed to have survived an off-season of turmoil pretty well when Chase Budinger and Nic Wise decided to return. Certainly, you wonder if Budinger's decision might have been different had he known there was a chance Jennings might not be there next year.

But I guess I just can't see where this would really help Jennings. He might make some money, but the possibility of getting exposed doesn't seem worth the risk, and he'd build up a lot more name value going to Arizona and maybe leading a deep run into the NCAA Tournament. Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News lays out even more reasons this could be much ado about nothing, especially if Jennings gets the needed test score.

It's understandable why some UW fans are hoping Jennings does decide to head to Europe, however. Arizona looms as a team next season that could be really good but also has very little margin for error. Losing Jennings might be enough to ultimately allow UW to slide on by the Wildcats.

And it's not as if Jennings hasn't already made one move that proved beneficial to UW. It was his original commitment to USC in 2007 that helped convince Venoy Overton that he might be better off staying home and playing for the Huskies instead of trying to find playing time in a crowded Trojan backcourt. After Overton decommitted from USC and cast his lot with UW, Jennings then changed his mind and ended up signing with Arizona.

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Posted by Jake

5:48 AM, Jun 26, 2008

Thanks for commentary, Bob.

Posted by Randy

7:58 AM, Jun 26, 2008

The article compilation had a post by a guy named Chris that really hit the nail on the head. Sure I'll like to see Arizona lose and Lute Olson fail but only because I want UW to move past them. I still feel for Lute on the situation where he's worked to recruit a player of this calibre and used a scholorship on him only to (possibly) have him drop out at the last minute. Arizona would have no chance of replacing him with anyone nearly as good.

Of course we all remember the same thing happened to Romar & UW when Martell Webster headed strait to the NBA. How might Washington have done 2 years ago with Hawes, Brockman and Webster on the same squad. Well it never happened and we all know how things have gone since then.

And the funny thing is, I wouldn't blame Jennings for doing what is being suggested. It's the forced year in college that is causing this. We all recognize that Hawes was the same situation. If a player only wants to go into the NBA, it's not a good idea for force him to play college ball. He'll only play to make himself look good for the following year when he can get into the draft. Of course once a player gets on a college team he will try to win. That's a natural competitive instinct. But how many 5 star NBA sure things are going to pass up chances to score rather than make a pass that leads to someone else scoring?

The biggest reason I care is that I love the college game and get less and less enjoyment from the pro game.

But if Jennings does bolt for Europe and enough players follow his lead, it may force Stern the King to change his rule. We'll all be waiting to see how this works out.

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

12:42 PM, Jun 26, 2008

Good points Bob, with the exception that "maybe it'll be enough for Washington to slide by Arizona"...seriously, Washington has a ton to prove on the court before they can be considered Top Echelon in the Pac-10.

DeCourcy's article makes the most sense: Too much risk for Jennings unless he can't make the grades of course.

Let's see what happens with his grades, this Meatball thinks this is all fluff and Jennings will get the grades and come to Arizona with a chip on his shoulder ready to prove himself.

Posted by naterob4

9:44 PM, Jun 26, 2008


I told you that Jennings was too dumb to get into school!!!! maybe UofA will do a Wazzu and let a guy with a 470 SAT score get admitted....

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