UNLV can’t hang with the big boys. At least, not yet. The latest wake-up call came this past week when five-star wing Josh Green committed to Arizona Thursday afternoon via Twitter. A Top 10 player in his class (and Top 5 at his position), Green joins the squad down in Tucson despite years of UNLV recruiting by head coach Marvin Menzies and his staff.
The swing-and-miss was a jagged pill to swallow for fans hoping the Runnin’ Rebels would land another big fish. In what would have been arguably the biggest grab in recent memory for UNLV (sorry, Brandon McCoy), Green chose to stick with the glamour of a prime-time school. Scoring the prized prospect from Australia, Arizona beat out the likes of North Carolina, Kansas, USC, Villanova, and, of course, UNLV.
The gifted guard cited the Arizona atmosphere and the culture on campus as a major reason for his decision. UNLV, often referred to as a commuter campus by those who haven’t been there, wasn’t the right fit for this young man. Or was it the program itself?
“I want go where I fit in and am the happiest as a player and student,” Green said.
Some critics of the program used this miss as a chance to take their digs.
— Scott Gulbransen (@LVGully) October 4, 2018
We already know UNLV hoops is dead…just a lower-end mid major. This screams Div 2: https://t.co/B5RjSctC3n
— Scott Gulbransen (@LVGully) October 5, 2018
Now, you can criticize the program for not landing big-time recruits under Menzies but — please — don’t knock unlimited hot dogs and nachos. That’s big time, folks. Worse case, the Rebels stink but you can bathe in nacho cheese and nitro snacks.
Arizona was recently mentioned as the favorite to reel in the rising star. Green made his commitment there before taking his official visit in the desert. Our Runnin’ Rebels just missed out on the chance to have the Brothers Green here in Las Vegas. But all is not lost.
The 2018-19 squad is looking more talented by the day as practice opened this past week. With so many new names, it’s also important you pronounce them correctly when you take a quick break on the Thomas & Mack concourse.
Here is the pronunciation guide for UNLV basketball pic.twitter.com/ySABLpv0JE
— Tyler Bischoff (@Bischoff_Tyler) September 28, 2018
Rebel Nation, Rebellion, die-hards, or whatever you choose to recognize yourself as, take solace in the fact that once again UNLV was a finalist for a future phenom. All signs are still pointing towards the right direction, even if Green is a no-go. Maybe we should be like the 76ers and trust the process.
UNLV fans around town are hoping Menzies can “Make the Rebs Run Again.”