Men's basketball adds Davila for 2013-14

Gabe Davila signs to continue his basketball career
at the University of Rio Grande as his mother, Carol,
and brother, Alex, look on. Davila comes to the
RedStorm via Delaware Technical CommunityCollege.

RIO GRANDE, Ohio – University of Rio Grande men’s basketball head coach Ken French has announced the signing of Gabe Davila for the 2013-14 season.

A 6-foot-1, 175-pound point guard, Davila will be making a return to the court after a two-year hiatus.

Davila, who played high school basketball at Beachwood High School in suburban Cleveland, Ohio, last played at Delaware Technical Community College during the 2010-11 season and helped the Hawks reach the NJCAA Division II national tournament.

By signing with Rio Grande, Davila will also be reunited with former Delaware Tech teammate Josh Reagan.

“It’s one of the biggest days in my life,” Davila said. “I had a bunch of schools looking at me, especially after going to the junior college nationals, but to sign here and know that my best friend is coming with me makes it even more special.”

Davila averaged 6.4 points, 2.0 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game at Delaware Tech, ranking 26th nationally in assists. He was particularly good in the national tourney, averaging 15 points and seven assists per contest.

Davila also enjoyed an eight-game stretch late in the regular season when he had 10 or more assists seven times, while averaging less than a turnover per game of the second half of the season.

“Gabe is going to bring us a level of depth at the guard position,” French said. “We have some guys coming back next year but, with the lack of depth we had this season, we’re probably going to end up with having at least three guys in the program who can play point guard or a little bit of a combination point guard/(shooting) guard. He loves the game, he has a high basketball I.Q. and I think he’ll help us in the lockerroom.”

Davila, who plans to major in Accounting with a minor in Marketing, received interest from a handful of other schools including Mount Vernon Nazarene University and a trio of universities in Pennsylvania - Clarion, Millersville and West Chester – before deciding on Rio Grande.

Davila pointed to the reunion with Reagan, as well as the positive feedback he received following his visit to the campus for a workout and a meeting with French and his staff, as the deciding factor in becoming a member of the RedStorm family.

“The fact that Josh and I get to play together again and have the opportunity to be impact players was a big part of it,” he said. “Plus, Rio has great coaches. They’ll do everything they can to make me a better person, a better player and, hopefully, help me get an opportunity to play somewhere beyond Rio.”

French said the stability that Davila can bring to the backcourt shouldn’t be overlooked.

“Gabe’s one of those guys who’s an old-school kind of player,” said French. “He’s not going to do any one thing that wows you, but he understands what a coach wants and he can be a productive player. He’s the kind of guy who’ll do whatever it takes to play.”

Davila’s self-assessment of his game mirrored that of his coach-to-be.

“I feel like I bring a high I.Q. to the floor. I’m not the most athletic player, but I’m in the gym 24 hours a day – I’m a gym rat – and I know the game,” he said. “Plus, I think I do a pretty good job of controlling the tempo and taking care of the basketball.”

Davila admitted that he’ll need to improve his defensive play – “I’ve got slow feet. I’ve got to get them moving faster.” – but added that he’s looking forward to the challenges of playing in the Mid-South Conference.

“I think it’s going to be difficult to start with, but with the coaching staff here and my work ethic, I think I can adapt quickly,” Davila said.

Davila is the son of Carol and Jesus Davila of Cleveland.