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Last season, Arizona was synonymous with defense. The Wildcats did not allow much room for mishaps on the defensive side of things. Head coach Sean Miller's team was so stout defensively that within seconds they could turn a team's offensive hesitation into a bad shot or a carless turnover that usually resulted in a highlight reel dunk on the other end.
Heading into this season the 'Cats are returning some key pieces from last year's Elite Eight team as well as adding some firepower from the 2014 recruiting class that includes a JUCO transfer, too.
Once again it is predicted that Miller's team will be a defensive powerhouse in their conference and the nation.
Recently GOAZCATS.com covered the adidas Nations camp in Garden Grove, California. Junior center Kaleb Tarczewski and incoming freshman Stanley Johnson were in attendance as college counselors.
The freshman wing was able to sit down with GOAZCATS.com and discuss the upcoming year and he believes defense can be UA's calling care once again.
"This team can be a better defensive team this year," Johnson told GOAZCATS.com. "I think we're a lot quicker and more agile, and at the end of the day we know we have to win and we want to win, so our drive will push us to be better."
The California native feels that team defense will be one of the Wildcats' strong points this season.
"As a team everyone is a smart and capable defender," Johnson said. "If everyone commits to doing their best the result should be great."
Johnson's performance in Southern California was something to marvel at. He was great on both ends of the floor and connected on several acrobatic layups. One of the most exciting parts about his showing at adidas Nations was that he went toe-to-toe with NBA guard Aaron Afflalo and really gave the NBA vet fits.
"I want to make a career out of this," Johnson told GOAZCATS.com. "It is really a great experience to play against current NBA players, not everyone gets the chance to measure up against the best talent in the world and I think I did well."
Johnson is ready to help bring the Wildcats to their first Final Four since 2001. This year's version of the team is deeper and has more veterans so all the pieces are there, but it will be a matter of execution.
Click Here to view this Link.Joseph Duruaku
GOAZCATS.com Staff Writer