LOGAN -- Thursday will be a big day for David Early.
Early, a Logan High School basketball All-State standout, is back at Logan seeking eligibility for his senior season.
Early had left Logan earlier in the fall and went to play at Beckley Prep but left the team after roughly 10 games with the Swarm this season.
Now, Early has a meeting scheduled with the WVSSAC on Thursday to see if he can gain eligibility to make a return to the Wildcats.
"He's back at Logan," Logan coach Zach Green said. "He has a meeting with the WVSSAC tomorrow (Thursday) to find out exactly what that situation will be and how that's going to be handled. We don't have a whole lot of information on that right now but he is back at Logan and he is seeking eligibility."
Early, a 6-foot-4 guard, was a Class AA First-Team All-State selection last year and led the Cardinal Conference in scoring. Early scored more than 30 points in eight games last season and averaged 26.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.5 steals per game.
Logan would obviously love to have him back.
Early led Logan to a 20-5 season and a 12-2 mark in the Cardinal Conference last year but the Wildcats were upset 61-55 at Poca in one of the two Class AA Region 4 co-championship games.
"Obviously, he was a First-Team All-State guy," Green said. "He scored 27 points a game last year. He's a Logan kid, so having a kid like that back in your program and the things that he can do for you on the floor would be really good for us going forward. We're just going to play it by ear and hopefully we can get everything handled."
Green said he's not sure why Early left Beckley Prep.
"I'm not sure to be honest," he said. "I haven't gotten into that with him. We just kind of welcomed him back and have done what we can help him with the SSAC. All of this will come out after his meeting with the SSAC."
If Early is ruled ineligible by the WVSSAC Logan is likely to appeal.
"The SSAC will make their first decision tomorrow," Green said. "Then we will know what the process will be after that."
Early's initial move to Beckley Prep was a big blow to the Wildcats.
Logan had already lost three starters from last year's team.
Peter Noe, a 6-foot-10 center, and 6-1 forward Chucky Felder both graduated.
Brothers Drew Hatfield (5-11 senior), a starter last year, and Devin Hatfield (6-0 sophomore) who had transferred to Logan after the football season from Mingo Central, have went back home to MCHS.
Both played big roles in the Wildcats' success last season. Drew Hatfield (14.5 points, 10.5 assists, 4.0 rebounds, 3.6 steals) was a starter and one of the team's top scorers. Devin Hatfield, a reserve, saw his role continuing to grow as the season progressed.
Logan returns guards Mitchell Hainer and Noah Cook, but will field a young squad for the upcoming season with an influx of freshmen and sophomore players expected to help take up the slack.
Logan had advanced last season to the Class AA Region 4 Section 2 championship game after beating Scott 71-61 but then lost 68-55 to eventual state champion Chapmanville Regional in the sectional finals at Mingo Central High School.
The defeat to the Poca Dots then ended Logan's season.
Logan is scheduled to open the season on Dec. 10 at Herbert Hoover.
The Wildcats play their first 10 games on the road including a Dec. 19-21 trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, where Logan is slated to play in the Smoky Mountain Shootout.
Logan's home opener at Willie Akers Arena is not until Jan. 14 vs. county rival and two-time defending state champion Chapmanville.