Powell eventually chose the Gators, then took a dig at his home-state Volunteers.
"I want to tell the Florida fans to come in and support," he told GatorCountry.com. "We are going to get a Memphis-to-Florida dynasty going."
The arrogant remark didn't speak well for Powell's character. Nor does news that he and Gator football player Brandon James were arrested earlier this week and charged with the purchase and possession of marijuana. The two athletes reportedly met with a confidential police source to buy less than a gram of pot for $20.
In a prepared statement, Florida athletics director Jeremy Foley announced:
"We are aware of the situation and understand the severity of its nature. This is not something we take lightly. Both coaches have informed me that the players involved have been suspended indefinitely and we will continue to follow the procedures in addressing this."
Powell played a minor role in Florida's run to the NCAA basketball title as a true freshman last winter. He appeared in 23 of the Gators' 36 games with no starts. He averaged 1.6 points per game while shooting 61.1 percent (11 of 18) from the field and 50 percent (5 of 10) from the foul line.
Incidentally, the scholarship Pearl offered Powell eventually went to another 6-4 guard, Josh Tabb of Harmony Christian Academy in Cincinnati.
Tabb played in all 35 Tennessee games last season, starting three. He averaged 17.6 minutes, 3.5 points and 2.8 rebounds per game.
Known for his tenacious defense, Tabb ranked fifth among the Vols with 30 steals. He shot a solid 50 percent (53 of 106) from the field and, to date, has had no run-ins with the law.