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Head coach Sean Miller has a knack for this recruiting thing. The Wildcats welcomed their third consecutive top-10 recruiting class to campus, including two McDonald's All-Americans.
With the addition of six incoming freshmen and four transfer students, one might find themselves looking at the program a lot more than usual. The one number that everybody will be looking for and watching will be No. 11.
The 6'9", 225-pound forward from San Jose, Calif. will be anchoring the front court with returning sophomores Brandon Ashley and Kaleb Tarczewski. The accolades for Gordon have already started to roll in having been named to both the Oscar Robertson and Wayman Tisdale Award watch lists by the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA).
The Robertson Trophy is presented to the National Player of the Year, and the Tisdale Award is for the nation's top freshman. Speaking of freshmen, Gordon is one of only four incoming freshmen on the 15-man Robertson watch list and the only Pac-12 freshman on the 10-man Tisdale watch list.
Junior point guard T.J. McConnell enters the 2013-14 season with a heavy load to carry—court general for one of the best frontcourts in the country. Replacing Mark Lyons, McConnell will look to replicate Lyons' 2012-13 campaign—without all the turnovers. In his first game for the Wildcats in an exhibition against Augustana, McConnell tallied 12 points, eight assists and zero turnovers.
Due to NCAA transfer regulations, McConnell sat out last season but practiced with the Wildcats and learned the offensive scheme and how Coach Miller likes to run the game. The "pass-first" point guard averaged 4.9 assists per game in two seasons at Duquesne. He is a master thief, finishing in the top five nationally in steals in his first two seasons. McConnell was named to the watch list for the Bob Cousy Award for the nation's top point guard awarded by the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame.
Prior to the Gordon announcement earlier this year, the Wildcat faithful were crazy about Hollis-Jefferson. The 6'7", 215-pound forward from Chester, Penn. committed last year to Coach Miller and was looking to start right away. A consensus top-25 recruit, Hollis-Jefferson will be the perfect candidate to fill the spot vacated by Kevin Parrom.
Hollis-Jefferson played in both the McDonald's All-American Game and the Jordan Brand Classic earlier this year. He has been invited to play with USA Basketball for the past three seasons and holds both a gold and silver medal.