Big time point guard likes UA's guard tradition

Arizona is making a push for Chris Douglas-Roberts. Of course they are not alone. A number of big time programs are trying to impress the point guard who has made a big splash in recent weeks. Due to a fantastic spring, Douglas-Roberts is now the nation's second ranked point guard for 2005.

Chris Douglas-Roberts is a legit 6-5 point guard and he's proving that he is an elite player. He had a long list of schools before hitting the recruiting circuit and now has added Arizona, North Carolina and Duke in recent weeks.

"Right now I'm still wide open as I can be," Douglas-Roberts said. "It is a big thing when Arizona, North Carolina and Duke get involved in your recruiting. Even though they are involved, they are pretty much even with other schools on my list. Kansas, Miami and UConn are on the same level. Right now nobody has an edge."

To say that the Wildcats are making a push might be an understatement. Arizona is coming hard after the Detroit point guard.

"Coach Pastner has made a real big push," said Douglas-Roberts. "He's been getting in touch with my coach and calling him a lot. He's a relentless recruiter, that's what makes him so good. He's made a real push."

Some might not like the aggressive style that Pastner employs, but Douglas-Roberts insists that he not only likes Pastner but the schools as well.

"They're point guard University," Douglas-Roberts explained. "All of their point guards have gone to the NBA and have been successful. Mustafa (Shakur) is the next one. Arizona is definitely going to be there in the end."

The big time scorer knows what he is looking for in a school. He has some very clear criteria for the program that finally gets his services.

"I am looking for a family atmosphere," Douglas-Roberts explained the first and most important trait he was looking for in a school. I'm looking for a place where the coaches and players are close.

"In Detroit I play for a team called the Family and that's what I am looking for," he continued. "My AAU team is very close and so is my high school team. I have to be living there for several years, so I want to feel like home. I want somewhere I fell I can be close to the coach."

Academics are also a key. Douglas-Roberts and his family have put a premium on school and that will be a major component of the school he chooses.

"I come from a real good academic school in Detroit," Douglas-Roberts said. "Academics are a big factor."

Finally, he mentions playing time. While many recruits downplay immediate action, Douglas-Roberts is honest about seeing the floor right away. He doesn't want anything handed to him, but he is honest when he says that he wants to play early in his career.

"Playing time is important," he said. "I don't want to go somewhere where I won't ever play my first year."

One thing that does not matter is distance from home. Although he loves Detroit, he isn't afraid of leaving home for college. He has schools on each coast and the Midwest on the list and no one region is ahead of another. He was worried that his mom would want him to stay close to home, but she has given her blessing for him to explore other parts of the country and that was good enough for him.

Given the fact that he's a 6-5 point guard, there is a legitimate chance that he could turn pro right out of high school. He's been compared to Shaun Livingston, the 6-6 point guard who is probably going to be a top-10 draft pick and that could pave the way for Douglas-Roberts if he continues to improve.

"If it comes up as a possibility, I would have to at least discuss it with my family," Douglas-Roberts said of the NBA. "As of now I definitely looking at college. I think it is the best thing for me, but not many people could pass up millions of dollars. I don't think it will happen right away. Right now it looks like college is where it's at."

Douglas-Roberts seems genuinely surprised from all of the attention he is getting from schools, but he is not shocked at how he has played lately. He worked hard to make an impact and it has paid off.

"I'm now rising in recruiting because no one got to see me play," he explains. "I was ranked pretty low, but now I'm top-15, top-10. I think I can be even higher than that after the summer."

CAT TRACKS' ANALYSIS: Douglas-Roberts joins Terrence Williams as the Wildcats' top two point guard recruits. The Cats have done a great job getting into the picture and should be a major factor in his recruitment. The fact that he knows about the tradition of Wildcat guard is a positive. Although he wants to play right away, the Cats are in better shape than Duke, Kansas and Carolina who have big time point guard recruits on board in either 04 or 05.

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