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May 6, 2012

Lyons set to join ‘Cats for 2012 season



When word started to come out that redshirt junior Mark Lyons would likely be transferring from Xavier upon graduation, Arizona was one of the programs immediately thought of as a possible destination.

Not only was the talented guard originally recruited by current Wildcats head coach Sean Miller and his staff, but Lyons also has a friendship with fellow New Yorker and UA junior Kevin Parrom. All the pieces seemed to fit as Lyons said his main reason for leaving Xavier was to prove himself as a point guard, and the Wildcats happened to be in need of a point guard after off-season movement.

Lyons made a visit to Tucson this weekend, and once again Miller was able to get the 6-foot-1 standout to join his program for the second time.

Days after the official announcement of his departure was announced, Lyons told GOAZCATS.com that he knew what the situation in UA's backcourt looked like and he felt it could be a good fit.

"That's definitely been brought to my attention that Arizona needs a point guard," he said. "So I'd be lying if I said I wouldn't enjoy playing for coach Miller, but I still have to graduate and do a lot of other things. So hopefully we can make it happen."

Lyons also had Kentucky and Kansas as his other finalists, but UA provided the best opportunity to come in and be the sole starting point guard. But that likely wasn't the only factor that played a part as Lyons' relationship with Miller and his staff certainly made him feel comfortable with the situation.

"Coach Miller and Book (Emanuel Richardson), I love those guys and they've had faith in me since I was in high school," he said last month. "They gave me the opportunity to go to Xavier, and I appreciate everything they did for me - so it's a good thing."

Lyons averaged 15.1 points for Xavier last season to go along with 3.2 rebounds per game and 2.8 assists per contest. He will now be bringing his ability to be a difference maker to Tucson.

Matt MorenoMatt Moreno
GOAZCATS.com Senior Recruiting Editor
  
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