What has been expected regarding the status of Arizona center Kaleb Tarczewski became official on Friday: he will be back for his senior season. News of Tarczewski’s decision was first reported by ESPN.com, with the school confirming it shortly thereafter.
Tarczweski’s decision makes him Arizona’s lone returning starter from a team that won 34 games and reached the Elite Eight for a second consecutive season. He’ll be the elder statesman for a team that returns just one other contributing senior (guard Gabe York) from last year’s team, and the chance to be a leader of that young but talented group is just one of Tarczewski’s reasons for returning to Tucson.
“I’m also excited for the chance to be a leader next season,” Tarczewski said. “I also don’t feel as though I’ve played my best basketball. I haven’t proven myself, and this is a great opportunity for me to expand my role.”
“I’ve been here for three years. I’m almost considered a dinosaur in college basketball,” he added. “But for me, it’s about the end game. The most important thing for me is the journey and how you get to where you want to be. I’m happy to be in the position I’m in now — and I can’t wait for next year.”
The 2015-16 season could be one of multiple milestones for Tarczewski. On the court he’s 18 wins away from becoming the program’s winningest player, and in the classroom he’s on track to become the men’s basketball program’s first graduate from the business school.
Tarczewski will anchor a front line that includes Boston College transfer Ryan Anderson, rising sophomore Dusan Ristic and incoming freshman Chance Comanche. On the perimeter the Wildcats will be young but they won’t lack for talent, and they’ll once again be expected to win the Pac-12.