Arizona’s already-talent-rich basketball program got a little richer Saturday when Craig Victor, a five-star power forward in the 2014 class, announced his commitment to the Wildcats.
Victor, a 6-foot-8, 225-pounder, made the announcement on Saturday from his hometown of New Orleans, where he played at St. Augustine High, the same school former Arizona standout Gene Edgerson attended. Victor is set to transfer for his final year to Findlay Prep in Las Vegas, where current UA players Nick Johnson and Brandon Ashley established themselves as top recruits.
Victor visited Arizona in February and had been recruited by coach Sean Miller since he was an eighth-grader. He chose UA over hometown favorite LSU, which came on late in the recruiting process. He also had offers from national powers such as Kansas, Louisville, Connecticut and Florida, among others.
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Scout.com lists Victor as the third-best power forward in the recruiting class.
In its evaluation, Scout said: “At 6-8, 225 pounds, the word you’ll most frequently see attached to Victor is ‘sturdy.’ That description doesn’t speak only to his height and weight; he’s very well-proportioned and plays the kind of game that underlines a team’s collective effort.
“He has become a skilled face-up scorer as well. His jump shot now finds the net from 12-15 feet, and he handles well enough (especially going right) to beat many opposing big men off the dribble.”
While Miller has established himself as an elite recruiter who can and will bring in elite talent, one factor in Victor’s recruitment might have been Wildcats assistant coach Joe Pasternack. Hired in 2011 and recently promoted to associate head coach, Pasternack is from New Orleans and was head coach at University of New Orleans from 2007-11.
Victor joins Parker Jackson-Cartwright, a 5-foot-9 point guard from Los Angeles Loyola High, as recruits for the 2014 class, one that could conceivably grow to about five players depending on whether Arizona has any early defections for the NBA next spring.