Beaufort Today -

Delaney talks decision to transfer to Miami

  • Delaney returns an interception against East Tennessee State in 2016. Photo by Zach Bland/The Citadel Athletics.

News broke Monday morning that Whale Branch graduate Dee Delaney had decided to transfer from the Citadel to the University of Miami ahead of his senior year.

The NFL prospect cornerback will be able to play for the Hurricanes immediately because of his upcoming graduation from the Citadel in May.

Delaney spoke to Beaufort Today on Tuesday about his decision.

“It came about this past season out there on the field. There were times where I felt like I wasn’t really challenging myself. And my family felt the same way sometimes,” Delaney said.

“So they suggested that maybe I look into another school but at the time I was like, ‘No, I don’t really want to do that.’ And they told me to just give it a thought. I’m really family-oriented, so their opinion really matters to me and they’ve stood by this decision 100 percent.”

Delaney said his decision was significantly motivated by improving his likelihood of starting an NFL career after next season.

“Miami is a very historic football school and puts a lot of people (in the draft),” he said. “I think being at Miami will be a lot more challenging. They have more of a passing offense with their pro style, whereas Citadel runs the triple option and runs a lot. And with Miami passing, it will help me work on my coverage skills (in practice), and that’s what I really need to work on.”

The two-time FCS All-American made his decision after a trip to Miami last weekend. Delaney said he was primarily interested in South Carolina, but “they didn’t really have any interest.” Miami was the first school to contact Delaney and the only that piqued his interest.

Before his trip, Delaney said he decided he would either transfer to play for coach Mark Richt and the Hurricanes or stay at the Citadel based on how the trip went.

“How they go about their business was what stood out. A lot of people think of Miami as a party town, but I didn’t go into the trip with that on my mind. It was about business. I sat down and talked about the business aspect of things and what they really see in me and what I can do for the team,” he said.

Delaney said he talked to Richt and position coaches briefly about how they see him fitting into their schemes.

The business major is on track to graduate May 6 before immediately shifting gears.

“I’m supposed to report May 22, but I’ll probably go down there a week early to get moved in and get acquainted with the area.”

In an Instagram post and a separate letter posted on the Citadel’s athletics site Monday, Delaney thanked fans, friends, teammates and coaches for their relationships and explained that transferring was a difficult decision for him. He echoed those sentiments Tuesday.

“I believe that my time at the Citadel was pretty good. I enjoyed every moment, I learned a lot, I matured and I’m grateful for everything they did for me.”

Delaney tallied 81 tackles, 11 interceptions and 16 pass breakups the past two seasons.

CBS Sports projects Delaney as the country’s 18th-best cornerback heading into his final year.