Malachi Smith, talented 2021 combo guard and younger brother of Scoochie Smith, brings a talented skillset to UD as the first verbal commitment in the 2021 recruiting class. Photo courtesy of Flyer News.
Malachi Smith became the first member of UD’s 2021 recruiting class when he annoucned his verbal commitment to the Flyers men’s basketball program in two Instagram posts Saturday.
Smith, a 6-foot combo guard out of the Bronx, N.Y., is the younger brother of Scoochie Smith, who led the Flyers to four straight NCAA tournament appearances as a point guard in 2014-17 and now plays in Serbia.
Malachi, a senior at St. Raymond School for Boys, is a three-star recruit who ranks 197th overall and 20th among combo guards in 247Sports.com composite rankings.
Although his brother’s success at UD is well-know, Malachi told Dayton Daily News his decision had nothing to do with following in his brother’s footsteps.
“They’re a good fit,” Malachi said. “I had a good feeling. Everybody was telling me you’re going to have that one school to keep in the back of your head. For me, it was Dayton. I trust coach (Anthony) Grant, the national coach of the year.”
Although Grant was not coaching at UD during Scoochie’s college career, the family history seems to dictate success in Dayton. In his three full seasons as a starter at UD, Scoochie averaged 11.5 points, 4.2 assists and 3.2 rebounds, and racked up 145 steals while captaining the team in 2015-16 and ’16-17.
As a freshman in 2013-14, Scoochie came off the bench in the Flyers’ special Elite Eight run. Now, the “next generation” may have a chance to repeat that success.
Malachi comes in to a program coming off their best regular season ever, finishing 29-2 and on pace to be a No. 1 seed in the cancelled NCAA Tournament.
Important 2019-20 players like Jalen Crutcher, Ibi Watson, Rodney Chatman and Jordy Tshimanga will have used up their eligibility by the time Malachi joins the UD basketball program in 2021-22, but USC transfer Elijah Weaver will be playing after a one-year break, and young guys like Dwayne Cohill, Chase Johnson and Moulaye Sissoko will have one or two years under their belt.
The future looks bright for UD men’s basketball, and with fellow New Yorker Koby Brea joining the program as a freshmen for the 2020-21 season, the pool of talent looks deep for coach Grant, who garnered national attention and respect for UD by being named National Coach of the Year.