On Sunday afternoon, news broke that Mark Lyons, who had spent four years (one as a redshirt) at Xavier, would likely be leaving the Musketeer program.
There is still a chance that Lyons could enter the NBA Draft, but seeing as he probably is not in a position where he is going to be drafted, Lyons would be eligible to transfer without having to sit out a year if he can graduate from Xavier. Given that Lyons is a proven scorer and a dynamic playmaker, he would immediately become one of the most desired recruits because of the fact he can play right away.
He will, in all likelihood, get plenty of interest, but one school to keep an eye on will be Arizona.
I don’t say that because I have any kind of inside information; I say it because it makes too much sense. Sean Miller took over the Arizona program in 2009 when he left Xavier. Lyons may be a junior eligibility-wise, but because of his redshirt season, he’s been in the program for four years. It’s not hard to figure out from there that it was Miller who recruited Lyons to Xavier.
But wait. There’s more.
Arizona desperately needs a point guard for next season. They are bringing in their second straight loaded recruiting class, but all of the talent on their roster resides on the wing and in the front court. With Josiah Turner’s decision to transfer out of the program, the only point guard on the Wildcats roster is TJ McConnell. McConnell is the perfect fit, but he has to sit out a season.
The other thing that Turner’s transfer did is get the Wildcats down to 11 scholarships, which means that they have one open for next season. (Arizona was docked a scholarship for violations from the Lute Olson era.)
So Arizona has an open scholarship and a need for a one-year rental at the point. Mark Lyons needs a place to play for a year and the coach that recruited him to Xavier has an opening on the roster.
It just makes too much sense.