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Posted at 10:26 AM ET, 05/09/2012

Virginia Tech’s James Johnson gets one recruit back, waits on another

(Dave Knachel - Virginia Tech via AP)
With the news Tuesday that freshman Dorian Finney-Smith has decided to transfer from Virginia Tech after just one season, Coach James Johnson is faced with a roster next season that will be light on scholarship players. So it only makes sense, then, that his pursuit of the Hokies’ two 2012 commitments has taken on greater importance.

In that regard, Johnson has made some progress in the past week, meeting with both prospects separately. Johnson said Tuesday that Rustburg, Va., native Marshall Wood has already decided to honor his commitment to Virginia Tech, and will be the eighth scholarship player on the team in 2012-13.

Wood had asked for a release from his national letter-of-intent after former Coach Seth Greenberg was fired two weeks ago. The 6-foot-8 forward was reportedly considering spending a year at a prep school while he mulled his options. But Wood’s decision was swayed by the fact that Johnson was the assistant coach who originally recruited him to Virginia Tech.

Johnson, though, still has some work to do with Virginia Tech’s top 2012 recruit, Hargrave Military Academy’s Montrezl Harrell. Johnson also had a sit-down with him last week, but characterized Harrell as “up in the air right now” in terms of honoring his commitment to come to Blacksburg.

The 6-8 forward had a breakout senior season and played very well on the spring all-star circuit, earning MVP honors at the Capital Classic in Alexandria and the Jordan Brand regional all-star game in Charlotte. That has added to his list of suitors, which reportedly now includes Kentucky, North Carolina State and Pittsburgh, among others.

When reached Wednesday morning, Hargrave Military Academy Coach A.W. Hamilton said he had no update on Harrell’s decision.


Finney-Smith to transfer from Virginia Tech.

Johnson completes his U-turn.

Coaches, players reflect on Johnson’s hiring.

By Mark Giannotto  |  10:26 AM ET, 05/09/2012

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