Red-Shirt Or Not, Jay Huff Excited For First Year

Jay Huff arrives at the University of Virginia as a skilled 6’11” prospect with outside shooting range beyond the 3-point line. Under-the-radar at the time he committed to UVA, Huff concluded his high school career as a state champion and also ranked as a consensus 4-star prospect. Still, with his slender build, he is a bit of a wildcard as far as this coming season is concerned. A red-shirt season is a possibility; however, it’s not a certainty.

Unlike his classmates Kyle Guy, De’Andre Hunter and Ty Jerome, Huff did not play on the major AAU circuits. The lack of exposure didn’t stop Cavaliers head coach Tony Bennett from offering the talented big man back in the spring of 2015. In May of 2015, Huff accepted the offer.

Following an outstanding senior season in which he helped Voyager Academy (Durham, N.C.) capture an NCHSAA 1-A boys state championship, Huff graduated from Voyager Academy on May 26, and, along with his aforementioned classmates, began classes at the University of Virginia yesterday. Prior to his arrival, Huff took some time with TheSabre.com to discuss a variety of topics, including…

What he is looking forward to doing most after arriving on Grounds…

“I’m looking forward mainly to getting to know the teammates I’m playing with, getting to know the campus a little bit. I haven’t been on campus all that much. It’ll be good to get that out of the way this summer.”

The relationship he has developed with De’Andre Hunter, Kyle Guy and Ty Jerome prior to starting classes at UVA…

“We have a good relationship so far even though we haven’t gotten to talk that much. We talked once in a while about random stuff. I’m definitely looking forward getting to know my classmates better.”

What’s special about this class from a basketball standpoint…

“This class, we can all shoot. We can all shoot the ball very well. And we are athletic. We are all pretty athletic.”

His focus from the end of his high school season until the beginning of his UVA career…

“I’ve been working out and lifting a lot. I do treadmill workouts and shooting workouts pretty much every day. I graduated on May 26, so I’ve had time to do that stuff and rest when needed.”

How he has progressed skill-development-wise since his senior season came to an end…

“I feel like I actually progressed a lot. My 3-point shot is back to where it needs to be. I didn’t shoot many during the season. Defensive sliding… my workouts helped with that. That helped a lot so I can move faster laterally. I’m a lot stronger.”

How ready he is for major college basketball…

“I’ve watched a lot of basketball and have been playing for a long time. It’s a bigger stage with bigger people, but it’s still the same game. I don’t tend to get nervous. I don’t really tend to have butterflies, so I think that will help me.”

The prospects of red-shirting this season…

“We talked about red-shirting and it all depends on how the summer goes. I’ll get bigger, get stronger, and we’ll see how it goes.”

Traveling to Spain this summer…

“I think it’ll be a lot of fun because I’ve never been out of the country. I think, with the adjustment from high school to college, it will be important development-wise for the coming four years and especially for coming season. Those are going to be some competitive games.”

What first drew him to head coach Tony Bennett…

“He seems really genuine. I wasn’t just a basketball player. Our first conversation wasn’t

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