Madison Elliott (@m_elliott95)
Tim Delaney has been in the spotlight before, as the first committed recruit for the 2015 Villanova recruit class. Now, he has some big changes coming up as he begins to prepare for his senior season.
He transferred from Pitman High School in New Jersey after his junior year and will be starting at Blair Academy in September. This transition will mark a new step in Delaney’s career.
“I start up there September 10, they got fall ball like everyone else. The season starts a lot earlier. We can get in the gym a lot earlier,” said Delaney, a 6-foot-9, 230-pound power forward. “So we get to start a lot earlier and just more time in the gym. National schedule too, so that’s fun.”
Delaney left Pitman, defending New Jersey Group 1 champions, this summer to move up to the next level of play to prepare him for his college career. Terrell Myers, Delaney’s AAU coach with WE R1, thinks Pitman did a very good job of teaching Delaney, but knows Blair will prepare him for college play.
“It is much faster pace. Pitman was a lower level, so Blair will give him opportunity to get better,” said Myers, who has been coaching Tim for two years. “He will be playing teams all over the country with some of the best players, so it will help him prepare for the next level.”
It’s going to be tough for Pitman to repeat their success of last year. Not only did Delaney leave, but graduating seniors
Delaney committed to Villanova at the end of his sophomore year, right after the June 15th mark. He had heard the most from Villanova and Saint Joseph’s while being recruited, but also had some big looks from schools such as Rutgers, Penn State, Oregon State, Indiana, Notre Dame, Butler, and schools in the Big 5. However, he found Villanova to be the best fit for him.
“The teammates, the coaches, I thought I fit really well into their system,” Delaney said. “It’s far away but its close enough too, it’s about an hour. I just really like their system, thought I fit in well.”
Delaney is part of a two-man class already committed to start at ‘Nova next year, along with Salesianum (Del.) guard Donte Divincenzo. With three scholarships still open and top-50 players like Isaiah Briscoe and Cheick Diallo considering the Wildcats, it’s a chance for head coach Jay Wright to bring in one of his best recruiting classes in his 13 years at the school.
Though the Wildcats are the defending Big East champions, they only lost one senior last year and look prepared to contend for no less than a Big East title for the foreseeable future.
Since Delaney has committed, he has been keeping busy by practicing and preparing for the next level.
“He has been at training camp all summer,” Myers said. “He has been working really hard.”
Myers sees a lot of potential in Delaney, who is one of the key players on the team.
“He is definitely a leader on the team. He will say, ‘hey coach, I see this.’ He knows the game very well,” Myers said. “His mother was a coach, his uncle was a coach. He has a lot of knowledge and experience being surrounded by the game his whole life.”
His mother, Jeanine Delaney, played basketball for cross town rival of Nova, St. Joseph’s University. She also played in Europe and coached. His mother has sported her SJU pride at the tournament, but she still supports her son for playing at Villanova and has been very influential in his career.
“She taught me everything so she tried to stay out of it,” Delaney said. “She was just telling which system I would fit in with, but that got interesting with a couple of her friends.”
This tournament is full of Division I coaches, so many players are here to get looks and offers. Having already committed, Delaney has a different reason to be here.
“It’s always a great opportunity to get better when you got the best players in the country all in one gym,” said Delaney. “Especially being able to play against them for three days straight so just another chance to get better and have fun.”