Welcome to A10 Talk’s Preseason Top 25 Player Countdown for the 2018-19 season. Each day, we’ll be publishing a new article counting down our best 25 players for the coming season, as voted on by our staff of writers. Today, we feature #6 Jeff Dowtin of Rhode Island.
What He’s Done
Jeff Dowtin has been shown to be one of the absolute best college basketball players when it comes to assist-to-turnover ratio during his two seasons spent as a Rhode Island Ram. He is not unfamiliar whatsoever with winning awards, as he was on the Atlantic 10’s all-rookie team at the end of his freshman season and he was on the all-academic team at the end of last season. Last season, he shot 70.9% from the free throw line. The modest free throw shooting percentage was a great improvement for Dowtin, in comparison to the 57.1% he shot from the free line in his first season. Additionally, going from his freshman campaign to his sophomore campaign, he increased the amount of points, rebounds, assists, steals, rebounds, and blocks that he had per game. The man that many URI fans refer to as “El Jefe” showed the ability to stuff the stat sheet and pick up the slack when some of his teammates were having an off night.
What He’ll Do
With no more E.C. Matthews, Jared Terrell, Jarvis Garrett, Stanford Robinson, and Andre Berry in Kingston, Rhode Island, Jeff Dowtin will be looked at to be the new voice of reason in the locker room. Beyond his new leadership role, the St. John’s alum will be looked at to shoulder the scoring load this season. His gradual increases in shooting percentage from beyond the arc and at the free throw line will need to continue. In his junior year, he will not only need to focus more on scoring the basketball but he will have to figure out how to utilize his new offensive weapons around him, which include the likes of Jermaine Harris, Dana Tate, Tyrese Martin, and Omar Silverio.
After his final shot fell short in the 2018 Atlantic 10 championship game, many college basketball experts expect the point guard to come out even hungrier this season and cease his redemption. There is no mistaking Dowtin’s preseason second team all-conference selection and he could very well end up on the conference’s first team by this season’s conclusion.
Previously: #7 Otis Livingston II