Keanu Pinder, the 6’9″ athletic forward from Perth WA, signed a National Letter of Intent with Arizona this morning after visiting several top Division I schools.
“Arizona has a winning tradition and I believe playing for Coach Miller will enhance my ability to play at the next level. That’s why I feel like Arizona is the best place for me,” Pinder said.
With a history of sending players to the NBA, Arizona has many features that attracted Pinder. “Playing in the post season is a dream of mine,” confides Pinder, “I feel like Coach Miller can motivate me to be the best player I can be, to help me reach my goals, and help the team compete at the highest level. My role will be to come in and get rebounds and score where I can.”
Pinder will join Arizona after a two year stint at Hutch Junior College where he went to the National Championship, an experience he feels has given him a level of maturity and leadership that will stand him in good stead when he joins the Wildcats. “I’ve been through it before, twice. The first year we went to the post season and were knocked out early. I learned my lesson and the next year came through with a better attitude and we made it to the Championship game.”
Pinder’s mother, Tracey Smith, said “I’m very proud of Keanu and everything he’s achieved. His love of the game and commitment to always improving has really impressed me. He has grown into a responsible young man, making his own decisions, and I am looking forward to seeing him get on with the job and do what he has set his mind to.” Tracey, who has supported Pinder’s basketball career from an early age added “I would definitely love to visit Arizona and see him play.”
Tracey will be getting that opportunity sooner than later with Pinder planning to return to the USA in the U.S. summer to start working out with his new teammates. “I’ll be heading over early June to work on my game and get stronger. My aim is to reach 235lbs so I can be in the best shape of my life and really compete for minutes at the power forward position,” Pinder said.