CHOL

Arizona Basketball: Next stop for Chol is SDSU, coach says

2013-05-09T00:00:00Z Arizona Basketball: Next stop for Chol is SDSU, coach saysBruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
May 09, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Angelo Chol returned to San Diego last weekend, and he didn't take long before deciding to stay.

A week after he decided to transfer from the Arizona Wildcats, the sophomore forward chose to continue his college basketball career at San Diego State, according to his high school coach, Ollie Goulston.

Although Chol generated interest from 48 schools, including Florida and Pitt, Goulston said Chol preferred to stay in his adopted hometown.

A native of Sudan, Chol moved to San Diego at age 6 and has mentors there in Goulston, attorney Leslie Coughlan and philanthropist Becky Moores.

"I don't think it's ever a negative for anyone to come home to their support system," Goulston said.

Never a fan of the recruiting process, Chol finished the spring semester at Arizona last Friday and quickly visited San Diego State before finalizing his decision. He did not take any visits nor did he talk to coaches at other schools, Goulston said.

"He just wanted to look first at that (SDSU) situation when he came back, and he did that," Goulston said. "He was comfortable."

Chol chose Arizona in February 2011 over Washington, North Carolina, Kansas and Alabama. He averaged 12.2 minutes a game as a freshman in 2011-12 but averaged just 8.5 and did not play at all in seven games as a sophomore after UA brought in freshmen post players Kaleb Tarczewski, Grant Jerrett and Brandon Ashley.

Chol will sit out the redshirt season required of transfers next season and have two years remaining beginning in 2014-15, when he could team in the post with fellow shot-blocker Skylar Spencer and Utah transfer J.J. O'Brien, among others.

SDSU has a long history under coach Steve Fisher of taking four-year transfers and working them into the rotation.

"There's a lot of opportunity there," Goulston said.

Although Chol will be sitting out when the Wildcats and Aztecs finish up a home-and-home series next season in San Diego, it is possible he could face his former teammates in 2014-15, when both UA and SDSU are scheduled to play in the Maui Invitational.

While being among the West's top basketball programs, Arizona and SDSU have built a mutual respect. They have played each other five times in the past seven seasons in home-and-home series, with UA going 3-2, while the Wildcats also beat the Aztecs in the final of last season's Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu.

"Their program stands for itself," UA coach Sean Miller said before the Diamond Head Classic final. "I've only been in the West for four years, but during my time, there's no program that's thrived more than San Diego State."

On StarNet: Keep up with the Wildcats' basketball team with Bruce Pascoe's blog at azstarnet.com/pascoe

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