October 7, 2004

With Prince committed, what about Nic Wise?

The commitment of J.P. Prince on Thursday came as great news to Arizona fans but it isn't without a smidge of concern. No, not because he isn't solid - he is - but because he plays point guard.

So, too, does Arizona-bound 2006 prospect Nic Wise, who was at one time thought to be the only point guard in UA's post-Mustafa Shakur plans.

Wise is a 5-9, 175-pound dynamic playmaker from Kingwood (Texas) High just north of Houston. He was at one time rated as a top-five prospect in the 2006 class, but slipped in the rankings when he was forced to play out of position for his Houston Hoops AAU team this past spring and summer.

When he first committed to Arizona as a freshman in high school in late April of 2003, news came out that he had been assured by the Wildcat coaching staff that they would not recruit any other point guards ahead of him, whether it be from 2004 or 2005.

Well, Shaun Livingston, Jordan Farmar, Isaiah Swann, Mario Chalmers and one J.P. Prince later, we felt like seeing how the Wise family felt about the situation now.

Luckily for those who follow Arizona basketball, Wise and his family have the best possible attitude about it all.

"Nic's mind frame is that it doesn't bother him at all," said Nic's father, Greg Wise. "He looks at (Prince) like it's just another great player he's going to be a teammate with."

Prince has the size (6-6, 185) to play multiple positions and has said that he is very capable of doing so but has made it clear that he wants to run the point in college. Because of that, it would normally seem like Wise would have reason to be upset or hold a grudge but so far it hasn't happened like that.

"I asked Nic about it and he said 'oh I like (Prince)!'" Greg Wise said. "I said no, what about him coming in as a point guard? But it didn't even cross his mind. It was more of a 'I like him and I'm glad he's coming' thing.

"He feels like he's going to be as good as he needs to be regardless of who's going to be there anyway. With his height they can play together. It doesn't matter who's there. He wants all the talent there to make the team better. He surprised me when he didn't mention anything about the position at all."

Even with Prince in the fold at Arizona now, Wise says that he isn't at all worried that the Arizona coaches may be souring on his son. In fact, just the opposite is true.

"Coach (Lute) Olson loves Nic," Greg said. "He loves his passing ability and the way he leads his team. They're still excited about Nic because they know and I know how hard he's working to get ready in two years."

In his first two years of high school ball, Wise has led his team in assists twice and in scoring as a sophomore last season at Hightower High School.

He has since transferred to Kingwood HS (assistant coach Josh Pastner's old stomping grounds) where his family bought a new home. Originally the plan was to play at Westfield HS this season but Kingwood wound up as a more convenient choice because of location.

Greg Wise has replaced Terrul Henderson as head coach of the Houston Hoops 17-under team and that is nothing but terrific news in terms of Nic's development and future notoriety.

He will be back to playing the point full-time and doing so in a system he's familiar with and has excelled within.

He is currently rated No. 86 by Rivals.com but it is safe to say he will rise in the rankings now that he's not playing out of position and has a stable environment surrounding him.

Nic Wise Video from Rivals.com
Nic Wise Video from GOAZCATS.com

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