Vols Shoot for One-Plus-One

In keeping with the stay-home-young-man recruiting theme that underscores Buzz Peterson's efforts to turn Tennessee's hardwood fortunes around, the Vols are pursuing twin brothers with a name Big Orange fans know too well — Delk.

Tony Delk is the former west Tennessee basketball star who signed up to become the shooting guard in Rick Pitino's run-and-shoot circus. He was drafted by the Boston Celtics in 1996 and currently plays for the Dallas Mavericks. While a Wildcat, Delk won Kentucky's MVP award three straight seasons (1994-96). (Incidentally, the Wildcats' MVP in 1997 was Ron Mercer, another native of the Volunteer State the Vols didn't keep at home.)

Delk's nephews, Richard and Reginald Delk, are making a name for themselves as backcourt mates at Jackson Northside. Richard, the point guard, is 6-foot-5 and 170 pounds, while Reginald, the shooting guard, is identical in size. Both players are rated in the nation's top 70 prospects by as least one prominent ratings service, joining in-state stars Tyler Smith and Jamont Gordon on that elite list of top drawer talent.

The brothers plan to go to the same school and will have no shortage of offers considering they are a guard package with none of the communication problems that often plague backcourt tandems.

"I think we have a big advantage," Richard told Otis Kirk of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. "We know what each other is going to do and where the other is on the court at all times."

They also know what they're looking for in a school.

"Playing time is very important," Richard said. "We want to go where we have the opportunity to play early. Of course, we want to go where we can get a good education."

They are still open and are said to be considering Miami. Mississippi State, South Carolina, North Carolina State, Tennessee, Illinois, DePaul, Mississippi, Florida and Arkansas. They are also looking closely at Louisville, where Pitino is head coach.

The twins will have a chance to improve their stock next week when they participate in the Reebok ABCD at Teaneck, N.J.

And Tennessee has two more chances to sign a Delk.


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