Powell on Committing to UCLA

Norman Powell, the top shooting guard prospect in the west for 2011, recently verbally committed to UCLA, and he told us why, what the UCLA coaches are telling him, and what he needs to work on with his game...

Norman Powell, 6-2 SR SG San Diego (Calif.) Lincoln, committed to UCLA last week and his verbal was very important for a number of reasons. The top shooting guard prospect in the west for 2011, Powell is the kind of elite athlete that the Bruins have struggled to get recently. He has a chance to defend the one, two or three at the next level and gives Coach Howland the potential for another lock-down defender in the mold of Arron Afflalo or Russell Westbrook.

We had a chance to talk with Powell recently about his commitment and he said there were a few reasons that he chose the Bruins.

"The coaches were telling me that they want to get back to playing up-tempo and they felt that I would be good in the open court," said Powell. "I feel like I do well in transition, so that was a plus. Also, it's close to home, but not too close. And then the UCLA education as a whole is something that's really important."

Powell said he narrowed his recruitment down to three schools at the end.

"It was mainly UCLA, Arizona and San Diego State," said Powell. "Then when Arizona got Nick Johnson it was just San Diego State and UCLA."

Powell said he has a few parts of his game that he wants to work on before he gets to college.

"I want to get better with my ball handling and the arc on my shot," said Powell. "And the coaches want me to work on not dipping the ball when I go into my shot."

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