KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Victor Bailey Jr. has signed with the Vols, the school announced on Tuesday. The guard is transferring from Oregon and plans to enroll at Tennessee in July for the second session of summer classes.
Bailey will have to sit out the upcoming season due to NCAA transfer rules. He can play starting in the 2020-21 season and will have two seasons of eligibility remaining.
Bailey averaged 19.1 minutes in 37 games for the Ducks during the 2018-19 season while making eight starts. He averaged 7.4 points and two rebounds per game and led the team in free throw percentage hitting 91.1% of shots from the charity stripe. He shot 39.8 percent from three-point distance which ranked ninth in the Pac-12.
Bailey comes from an athletic family. His father played receiver for Missouri and in the NFL for the Eagles and Chiefs. His mother, Tonja Buford-Bailey, won a bronze medal in the 400m hurdles at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta.
Tennessee's roster has changed quite a bit since its season ended in the Sweet 16. The Vols lost six players from that team. Seniors Kyle Alexander, Admiral Schofield, Brad Woodson and Lucas Campbell graduated and are out of eligibility. Juniors Grant Williams and Jordan Bone have declared for the NBA Draft, which takes place Thursday, June 20. Sophomore forward Derrick Walker transferred to Nebraska.
Rick Barnes has added six players to the roster and continues to pursue another. Tennessee brought in a four-man recruiting class and added two transfers. Forwards Olivier Nkamhoua, Davonte Gaines and Drew Pember, and five-star guard Josiah-Jordan James are the incoming freshmen.
Bailey is coming in from Oregon and 7-foot-1 center Uros Plavsic transferred from Arizona State. Bailey will sit this season while the Vols await a verdict from the NCAA on a waiver that would allow Plavsic to play this year.
Tennessee is pursuing Virginia Tech graduate transfer power forward Kerry Blackshear and he is expected to visit the school later this week. The 6-foot-10 post player averaged 14.9 points and 7.9 rebounds for the Hokies last season and would be eligibility immediately with one season left to play. If the Vols were to land Blackshear, who is considering several other schools, that would require more changes to the roster. With the addition of Bailey, Tennessee has reached the scholarship limit of 13, so someone on the current roster would have to become a walk-on or leave the program.
Bailey provides much needed future guard depth for the Vols. Tennessee currently has seniors Jordan Bowden and Lamonte Turner, juniors Jalen Johnson and Yves Pons and freshmen Davonte Gaines and Josiah Jordan-James at the position.
Bowden and Turner will be gone after this season, Pons and Johnson are guard/forward types who might fit better at small forward and James has appeared in ESPN's 2020 NBA mock draft as a first round pick.