Scattershooting: Update on Virginia basketball recruiting and lots of golden nuggets…

By Jerry Ratcliffe

Photo: UVA Athletics

Scattershooting around the UVA athletic program with a men’s basketball recruiting update over your morning coffee …

Elmarko Jackson, a 6-foot-4 point guard from New Jersey (South Kent), cut his list of potential schools to 11 on Wednesday. One of Virginia’s top targets announced on Twitter that he’s down to these programs in no particular order: Virginia, Kansas, Louisville, Maryland, Notre Dame, Texas, Villanova, UCLA, Miami, Michigan and VCU.

He did not reveal when the next cut might be or a commitment date, but said in July that he plans to take some visits and decide sometime in the fall.

Meanwhile, 2023 4-star Freddie Dilione, who had been offered by UVA, has committed to Tennessee. Dilione, a 6-5 shooting guard from Raleigh, N.C. (Word of God), chose Rick Barnes’ Vols over the Cavaliers, NC State, Wake, Alabama, VCU and others (profiles on both these players appear elsewhere in our basketball archives).

Wahoos commit to Fort Myers hoops event

According to Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports, Virginia has settled its early-season basketball tournament in 2023.

UVA will join Wisconsin, West Virginia and SMU in the Fort Myers (Fla.) Tip-Off in November of 2023. Virginia, anticipating strong teams this fall and next season, is scheduling more aggressively in these November events.

Des not pleased

Virginia offensive coordinator Des Kitchings wasn’t particularly happy after Tuesday’s practice, as he and head coach Tony Elliott kept the offensive unit for extra running afterward.

“We had a terrible day offensively,” Kitchings said. “Too many turnovers, too many pre-snap penalties. We had a pass period, too many sacks. We’ve got to run the ball physically, we’ve got to pass-protect, too. We didn’t meet the challenge today.”

Short yardage …

  • According to Caesars Sports, these are the odds for ACC teams to win the 2023 basketball conference: UNC +130, Duke +260, Virginia +550, FSU +1200, Miami +1600, Louisville +1600, Virginia Tech +2000, Wake +2500, Notre Dame +3000, Syracuse +5000, NC State +6000. Everyone else: forgetabout it.
  • The postseason NIT is moving from New York’s Madison Square Garden to Las Vegas in 2023. The event will be in Indianapolis at historic Hinkle Fieldhouse (Hoosiers) in 2024.
  • Former UVA basketball starter Jamal Robinson has replaced Bryant Stith as assistant on Jeff Jones’ ODU coaching staff. You’ll remember Robinson for his spectacular dunks as a Cavalier. Stith left to become an assistant on the UNC-Greensboro staff.
  • Brian O’Connor has lost George Washington transfer right-handed hurler Harrison Cohen, who has signed a free agent deal with the Yankees.
  • Ben James, who will play for UVA this season, advanced to the round of 32 in the U.S. Amateur on Wednesday, defeating Georgia Tech’s Ross Steelman, 3 and 2. Keep an eye out for this kid.
  • Former UVA player DeVante Cross has signed a free agent deal with the Green Bay Packers as a safety.
  • Thank goodness, our longtime friend Dick Vitale declared on Wednesday that he is cancer-free.
  • Expected to win the Carolina starting running back job, British Brooks suffered an injury in practice and reportedly will miss the entire season.
  • 2023 sharpshooter Davin Cosby Jr., who holds an offer from UVA, will visit Charlottesville on Aug. 26.
  • Former UVA guard Doug “Fresh” Smith tells me that Virginia has never had a guard like Elijah Gertrude of Jersey City. Gertrude is down to five schools: Virginia, Kansas, Rutgers, St. John’s and Seton Hall. See the updated list of UVA hoops targets below.