Virginia Tech Basketball Recruiting Update: June 9, 2021

Eric Dailey
Eric Dailey could visit Virginia Tech. (@_edailey3)

Virginia Tech basketball recruiting news slowed down a bit this week, though there are two big items of note that I want to discuss today.  The first involves a visit from one of the Hokies’ main targets, and the other is about a national level recruit who Tech finds itself in the hunt for thanks to the Mike Jones connection.

Tyrell Ward (6-7, 185, SF) was scheduled to make a trip to Blacksburg on Tuesday.  As far as I know the trip went through as scheduled, though I couldn’t find any social media pictures to confirm.  My understanding is that the visit was an unofficial visit, rather than an official one.  He was only here for the day, and didn’t spend the night. 

You’d rather get an official visit than an unofficial one, but there’s still plenty of time for that.  As of now, the only scheduled official visit for Ward that I could find is LSU this weekend.  Xavier, Indiana and Maryland are also possibilities, along with Virginia Tech, though Maryland hasn’t signed a DeMatha player in well over a decade, so I wouldn’t put money on the Terps.

Ward played for new Virginia Tech associate head coach Mike Jones at DeMatha.  Miami, Georgetown and Georgia are also involved, but of course Ward can only take five official visits.  I would expect the Hokies to be heavily involved with Ward until the end of his recruitment, unless of course they get a commitment from another top target at his position.

Most of the talk surrounding Mike Jones has been about his relationship with DeMatha and DMV players, with discussions of his relationships with Team USA players being of a secondary nature.  However, Jones told Mark Berman of The Roanoke Times back on May 17 that he would be more than a regional recruiter.

“Because of USA Basketball, I do not believe that my ability to recruit will be limited to the D.C. area,” Jones said. “I’ve worked with coaches all over this country, where all the players are in the major markets, and then sometimes not in the major markets. My network, I’m very proud of.”

One player in his “network” is IMG Academy power forward Eric Dailey.  Dailey ranks as the No. 35 player nationally by 247.  As a comparison, Nickeil Alexander-Walker was No. 37 by 247, while Chris Clarke was No. 45.  Dailey is listed at 6-7, 215, and he can step out and make outside jumpers, hit midrange shots, and he can score on the inside.  He’s a former guard who has grown into a forward.

Dailey has taken part in USA Basketball’s Junior National mini-camps in the past, where he was coached by Mike Jones.  There’s the connection.  There’s also a connection with Michigan as well.  He plays at IMG with fellow top 100 player Jett Howard, son of Michigan head coach Juwan Howard.

Dailey is one of the most unique prospects that you’ll see.  It’s not even 100% set in stone that he’ll play college basketball, though it’s likely that he will.  In summers past (though not last year, I’m guessing), he played for CB Zentro Madrid, and he’s taken unofficial visits to big Spanish teams such as Real Madrid. Yes, the group that owns the world famous soccer team also owns the basketball team as part of a multi-sport club.

Dailey has also played with Team Skywalker in France, and you can also count Puerto Rico, Hong Kong, Bermuda, Antigua and Haiti among the countries where he’s traveled to play basketball.  He’s as