Basketball picks up ’09 verbal commit

Bryan Roy

The Arizona men’s basketball program’s “”Point Guard U”” legacy has reached more stability with its latest verbal commitment.

Point guard Reger Dowell, a three-star prospect according to, immediately jumped on a scholarship yesterday to play in the 2009-10 season.

Dowell joins lifelong friends, four-star shooting forwards Solomon Hill and Mike Moser, in UA head coach Lute Olson’s recruiting class of 2009 – the first class of Olson’s three newly-hired assistant coaches.

“”It’s been U of A – they’ve been in contact with me the past two or so months,”” Dowell said in a phone interview. “”I felt if they ever laid an offer on the table, I would most definitely snatch it.””

Arizona’s latest scholarship offer came during an uncertain time for the point guard position. Five-star recruit Abdul Gaddy, the nation’s top-ranked 2009 point guard, retracted his UA verbal commitment in June, but has kept Arizona his top school in an effort to re-open the recruitment process with Olson’s new assistants.

Gaddy’s move followed that of Brandon Jennings, the previous five-star point guard recruit who opted to play professionally in Europe after failing to qualify through the NCAA.

“”With the tradition that they have, I think it’s a blessing,”” said Dowell, a 6-foot-1 Duncanville, Texas native. “”I’ve always liked the U of A. I watch them on TV all the time; I love their style of play.””

Dowell, the nation’s 23rd-ranked point guard of his class, was in the middle of practice when he heard the news that UA assistant coach Russ Pennell offered him a scholarship. He accepted the offer shortly afterward.

“”(Pennell and I have) been in contact for about two months,”” Dowell said. “”He’s a straightforward type guy, he’s always going to be straight up and honest with me. I just felt like it would be a good situation for me.””

“”There ain’t too many guards to get a chance and go to a school like this,”” Dowell added. “”Coach Olson, he’s a great coach. It’s an honor for me to be part of their tradition and part of their family.””