Dominating inside at 6-foot-6 and 230 pounds for San Joaquin Memorial, Pondexter was the first California prep to score 2,000 career points and the first player from Fresno chosen as California Mr. Basketball in 1971. After a season at Fresno City College, where he average 24.6 points and 10.9 rebounds a game and garnered conference MVP honors and all-state recognition, Pondexter was recruited to Long Beach State by Coach Jerry Tarkanian. Adding muscle to the 49res' front line, Pondexter averaged 13.9 points and 9.3 rebounds as Long Beach State captured the PCAA title with a 10-2 record and advanced to the NCAA West Regional semifinals in a 26-3 season.
Pondexter became a two-time All-PCAA selection the following campaign, helping the 49ers to another PCAA championship and a 24-2 overall record in Coach Lute Olson's first season. Pondexter, an honorable mention All-american, left Long Beach State following his junior season and entered the NBA draft. He was selected in the third round by the Boston Celtics, but signed with the ABA's Virginia Squires. After the ABA folded, Pondexter played 10 seasons in Europe and South America. Following his playing career, he became an assistant to the athletic director at Fresno State, working with players during the Takanian era. He is the elder brother of FAHOF inductee Clifton Pondexter and father of NBA player Quincy Pondexter. Pondexter's brothers Clifton and Samuel are also in the FAHOF as members of the Memorial team recognition. While at Memorial, Pondexter led the Panthers to four league championships and the 1970 section championship. He averaged 29.7 points a game his senior season, was the Fresno Bee Player of the Year and earned consensus All-America honors. He finished his prep career with 2,288 points and 1,491 rebounds.