Ace Bailey opens up on Rutgers basketball commitment: ‘It felt like another home’
Ace Bailey is not only committed to Rutgers basketball, he is equally committed to building the 2024 recruiting class.
The highest-ranked player to ever commit to Rutgers, Bailey is a huge talent. According to 247Sports, he is the No. 15 player in the nation.
A 6-foot-9, 200-pound power forward from McEachern (Powder Springs, GA) committed to Rutgers in January following the Scarlet Knights overtime win against Ohio State. It was a bit of a surprise to see Bailey give his verbal to Rutgers, but he said he felt comfortable with the program.
“It was bigger. It was more about just playing (for) top coaches, about making a name,” Bailey said in an interview with GPB Sports
“It felt like another home up there. So it is different.”
Prior to the game against Ohio State, Bailey said he was thinking about committing and joining his teammate and friend JaMichael Davis (class of 2023 Rutgers basketball commit who is a guard at McEachern). But after the overtime win against a Big Ten rival, Bailey said it was the right time to give his verbal.
“So it wasn’t really planned. Me and my mom were talking about it and she just kept telling me to wait. So I waited and then I thought to myself that if I commit after the game, it’d be a perfect commitment because they won so after they won, we went down to the locker room – went down there. Me and my best friend – we call each other cousin. We’ve been together since he was little – Jamichael,” Bailey said.
“So it’s like we went into the locker room and then they just got hyped up the game and then I talked to my mom on the side I said ‘Mom this is what I want to do, this is where I want to be’ and she said ‘If you are okay with I’m okay with it’. So I pulled coach to the side and told him and it went crazy from there. My mom was crying, I was crying. Jamichael was happy – it is something I will never forget.”
The 2024 recruiting class is ranked No. 5 in the nation. But Bailey is doing his part to piece together what is likely to be the best recruiting class in program history.
Players such as Dylan Harper and Lathan Sommerville are in the mix right now to join Bailey at Rutgers.
“It’s building, I’m pulling people in, people are coming. People are thinking about it,” Bailey said. “But when I made that decision so other people are like ‘Hey, I want to go play with Ace Bailey. I want to play with this person.’ It is like I’m pulling them in.”
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