UA’s Kevin Parrom is second gunshot victim this year

Maybe Arizona’s Pac-12 coaches need to institute a new policy that says players can’t return home until their full tour with their program is over.

That might cut down on injuries – at least the kind that result from gun fire.

Kevin Parrom, a 6’6″ forward on the University of Arizona basketball team, is the latest to go home for a visit with family and return with a bullet hole somewhere in his body.  The junior played a key role in Arizona’s run to the Elite Eight last year.

Parrom went home to New York City over the weekend to be with his hospitalized mother and was shot in the back of his knee while in his Bronx home.  The case is still being investigated by New York’s finest, and meanwhile Parrom spent some time at Lincoln Medical Center to get patched up and then hopped aboard a Jet Blue flight back to Tucson yesterday.

The shooting is the second such incident involving an Arizona athlete in the past eight months.  Deantre Lewis, a running back for Arizona State, was shot in the leg in a random shooting while visiting his family in California last February.  He just wanted to be there to help his sister celebrate the birth of her baby.

Lewis had just completed a stellar freshman season, during which he ran for 539 yards and four touchdowns to make him the Sun Devils’ second-leading rusher.  He also caught 23 passes for 370 yards and an additional two TDs.

The sophomore tailback was expected to join senior Cameron Marshall in the backfield again this season, providing the No. 25 Sun Devils with a potent running attack.

Parrom is a reserve forward for the Wildcats, but posted 13 double-figure scoring games and gave Arizona 5.5 points and 2.5 rebounds a game during their run through the NCAA Tournament.  He was voted the team’s Most Improved Player for his performance last season.

It’s uncertain whether he will be ready to play in time for the basketball season opener against Seattle Pacific on Oct. 27.  Head coach Sean Miller is holding out any decisions regarding his return to the hardwood until he has more information.

Lewis had considered redshirting this season, but decided in August to try to get back into shape in time to contribute to the 2011 Sun Devil campaign.  Right now, Marshall is holding down the fort – and doing it in style.  He rushed for 142 yards in last week’s win over USC, including a 70-yard touchdown run on the fourth play from scrimmage.

But ASU could certainly use that 1-2 punch again as they work their way down the schedule in a quest for the program’s first winning season in four years.