The Arizona mens basketball program is still managing to stay afloat in a Pac-12 conference that is slowly losing power in the NCAA.
Arizona, Stanford and UCLA were staples in the NCAA tournaments in past years, but it’s now become a stretch for any of them to see much of the postseason. However, Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne thinks the team has found the stability they need in order to make it into the tournament and gain success.
“We had some instability in our leadership with coach [Lute] Olson’s retirement, and we had some turnover during a couple-year period,” Byrne told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf. “And what [coach] Sean Miller has done since he’s been here is obviously stabilizing that and has put recruiting and building the foundation of the program for the future in a very strong position.”
The Wildcats are 19-9 overall and 10-5 in the Pac-12, and they’ll just need to win their last three games against USC, UCLA and Arizona State to gain a better possibility to make it into the tournament, which Byrne thinks is likely.
“Even with some holes in our team this year, we’ve got a chance to still make it to the NCAA tournament,” Byrne said.
With all the success Miller is having, other universities still have interest in hiring him, which is okay with Byrne.
“I’d rather be in a position where you’ve got to worry about your coach getting stolen away by another school compared to figuring out how to get rid of him,” Byrne said. “I think we have the pieces in place from a nationally competitive standpoint to allow Coach Miller to have success at the highest levels here.”