July 12, 2006

J.P. Prince facing challenges in off-season

Rumors seem to follow Arizona sophomore guard J.P. Prince and the 6-foot-7 lefty says he wants to set the record straight on a few issues.

First of all, his lack of playing time as a freshman "was never anything basketball-related," he says, attempting to dispel the rumor that poor practice habits cost him minutes during games.

"Me not practicing hard or whatever was being said was never the case," Prince said Sunday night from his home in Memphis. "I got myself into trouble because of things that happened off the court. It was never basketball-related."

Still, on the floor, Prince only averaged 12 minutes per game and didn't play in five games over the final two months of the season, so something hoops-related had to be a concern somewhere.

"Coach (Lute Olson) and I put everything behind us," he said. "We've talked about it and I know that I can expect to have a chance to start at point guard or be the first guard off the bench as the sixth man this season.

"At worst, I'll be the first guard off the bench, even with (freshman point guard) Nic (Wise) coming in."

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