USC's Conwell changes mind about Pitt, chooses Arizona

Written by Mike White on .

New Pitt coach Paul Chryst got a WPIAL linebacker recruit Saturday. Two days later, he lost a WPIAL linebacker recruit.

Upper St. Clair's Dakota Conwell, a senior, said he made a verbal commitment to the University of Arizona today. Conwell visited Arizona this weekend.

Conwell (pictured), a two-time Fabulous 22 selection who played quarterback and linebacker, committed to Pitt last summer. But when Todd Graham left, he started having second thoughts. Tony Gibson, who recruited Conwell for Pitt, became an assistant coach at Arizona under Rich Rodriguez and began to recruit Conwell for Arizona.

"I've had strong feelings toward Coach Gibby ever since he was recruiting me for Pitt," Conwell said. "He had been calling me every week since the beginning when he was at Pitt, and that meant a lot to me.

"It's not a decision I made this weekend. It was a decision I've been thinking about since Todd Graham left."

Conwell said one of the reasons he chose Arizona was because of new coach Rich Rodriguez.

"I actually grew up being a fan of his because my Dad played at West Virginia," Conwell said. "I used to go to his camps when I was a little kid."

Conwell also said he believes he will fit in better with Arizona's 3-3-5 defense. He will play outside linebacker.

"Pitt's defensive coordinator still wants to talk to me. I'll listen but I just feel like Arizona is a better fit for me," Conwell said.

While Conwell decided against Pitt, Chryst got a linebacker from the WPIAL Saturday when Woodland Hills' Mike Caprara committed to the Panthers.

Join the conversation:

To report inappropriate comments, abuse and/or repeat offenders, please send an email to and include a link to the article and a copy of the comment. Your report will be reviewed in a timely manner. Thank you.