Arizona men’s basketball didn’t play in a March Madness game last season, but it’s picking up a player that helped pull off one of the tournament's biggest upsets.
Max Hazzard, a graduate transfer from UC Irvine, announced Tuesday morning he will spend his last season of eligibility playing for Arizona. Hazzard is highly regarded for his shooting ability and proved that during the NCAA Tournament when he scored 19 points, including five 3s, to help the No. 13 seed Anteaters stun No. 4 seed Kansas State in the first round.
“They call it a players program for a reason,” Hazzard told 24/7 Sports. “They were down this past year, and I like my chances to come in and fulfilling a big role and hopefully getting them back to Arizona basketball, where they belong."
The 6-foot-10, 170-pound guard averaged 12.5 points per game in the 2018-19 season and hit 93 3's at a 38% clip. Hazzard also set the program record with 10 3's in a game on Dec. 15, 2018.
"I feel like I’m in range when I walk in the arena," Hazzard said.
Hazzard figures to compete for a limited number of minutes in the backcourt. The Wildcats already have Nico Mannion, Brandon Williams, Alex Barcello, Dylan Smith and Devonaire Doutrive set to play next season. Sophomore Brandon Randolph declared for the NBA Draft but can still withdraw before May 29 if he wishes to return for a third year.
The commitment also sparks memory of Max’s brother, Jacob, who played at Arizona as a walk-on under head coach Sean Miller from 2012-2016. Jacob took to social media to show his excitement for his brother’s decision.
Max Hazzard will join the now No. 2 overall ranked recruiting class coming to Tucson after Duke jumped to No. 1 earlier in the week. The incoming class boasts two five-star recruits in Nick Mannion and Josh Green, to go along with four-star recruits Terry Armstrong, Zeke Nnaji and Christian Koloko.
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