After a quiet summer on the recruiting front, it seems that things are starting to get sunny here in Arizona.
Lauri Markkanen, a 6’10 forward and 2016 recruit from Helsinki, Southern Finland is making his official visit to Tucson.
This past weekend Markkanen visited Utah along with California center Jayce Johnson and JuCo guard Jojo Zamora. It is worth noting that Zamora committed to Utah during his weekend.
Utah has current success working with European bigs. Jakob Poetl, a 7’0 sophomore from Vienna, Austria is a candidate for pre-season candidate for Pac-12 Player of the Year who could also be a 2016 NBA Lottery Pick.
Markkanen also has ties to UNC and Roy Williams.
Lauri’s father, Pekka Markkanen, played under Williams for one year at Kansas during the 1989-1990 season. Markkanen averaged 6.9 points and 3.9 rebounds per game during his one season at Kansas.
Markkanen visited the University of North Carolina on Tuesday before his trip to Arizona.
Arizona is in serious need for Markkanen’s services as the Wildcats return no power forwards after next season. Arizona loses Ryan Anderson and Mark Tollefsen to graduation and they currently have no commitments as of October 15, 2015.
Head Coach Sean Miller will have his hands full trying to get a commitment out of Markkanen. One factor that could help is Miller’s recent success of sending forwards to the NBA over the past few years.
Another aspect could be the opportunity to play right away. With Anderson and Tollefsen graduating in May, there will be plenty of playing time available should he decide to commit to Arizona.
After the summer that Arizona had, it might once again be sunny here in the desert.