Three-star safety Tykee Smith out of Philadelphia’s Imhotep Institute Charter School has committed to West Virginia.
In a PennLive video he posted to Twitter, Tykee Smith announced his commitment to the Mountaineers.
Smith dedicated his commitment to his slain friend, Tyhir Barnes, who police say was shot and killed in 2016 following a fight at a basketball court. Barnes was 15.
According to PennLive, just hours after Smith returned to the park this month to lay down his Mountaineers hat near a mural of Barnes as part of the video, another friend and former Imhotep teammate, Kristian Marche, was gunned down 12 miles away.
Smith is the No. 5-ranked player in Pennsylvania and the No. 36 safety in the Class of 2019, according to the 247 Sports Composite.
“He’s so versatile,” Imhotep coach Nick Lincoln told PennLive of the 5-foot-11, 190-pound senior. “He can play anywhere. He just has a knack for the football. He’s smart. He watches film, and he gets it. He can look at a formation, and pick up on the plays a team runs out of it right away.
“He just kind of feeds our team in a lot of ways.”
With his fallen friends on his mind, Smith will bring that passion to Morgantown.