What is Tennessee getting in four-star Freddie Dilione

What is Tennessee getting in four-star Freddie Dilione

Four-star Freddie Dilione became the second commitment in the 2023 class for Rick Barnes and the Tennessee Volunteers today. The 6-foot-5 guard is On3’s No. 50 ranked player in his class and is ranked No. 77 by the 2023 On3 Consensus.

The Raleigh (NC) Word of God guard had a big summer on Adidas’ 3SSB Circuit. He had a few games of 25 and 30-point outings with sidelines full of coaches.

Dilione’s game

Freddie Dilione is wired to get buckets. That is the appeal of what he brings to the table. The unique part of evaluating Dilione is that he plays efficiently on the ball at this level.

Dilione has been a known commodity since middle school. As a ninth grader, he started at Fayetteville (NC) Trinity Christian alongside NC State’s Greg Gantt, a senior at the time. In recent years this program also produced Audiese Toney, Joey Baker, Dennis Smith, Jr.., and others. Dilione’s and Gantt’s group won 25 games.

At this level, many of his scoring opportunities come from being the primary initiator out of the pick and roll. While he could play on the ball some at the collegiate level, Dilione will be at his best off the ball, hunting shot opportunities.

Playing on the ball with Team Loaded NC during the Adidas 3SSB Finals, Dilione played five games. Synergy lists Dilione as averaging 17.8 points per game for the event. Through six April games on the Adidas 3SSB Circuit, Dilione averaged 22.5 points.

Dilione is 6-foot-5 with a strong frame. He has long arms and a sneaky straight line burst. Going back to the Adidas 3SSB Finals, a look at the Synergy stats, Dilione also averaged 5.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. In the six April games, he averaged 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists.

As we mentioned previously, Dilione plays primarily on the ball. Gauging how he will perform in college was an interesting task because he will have to learn how to play off the ball.

Dilione’s 17.8 points came on 18.2 shots per game (91 shots in the five games). Synergy stated his percentage breakdowns at 39.6 percent from the field, 16.0 percent from three, and 59.1 percent from the free throw line. His 3.2 assists also came with 4.6 turnovers per game.

Projecting Dilione

Dilione has that innate bucket-getting mentality. He has all the physical dimensions, and he has the handle that can get him to his spots off the bounce.

With this jump shot, Dilione is better off the bounce with it. Off two and three dribbles, especially in the mid-range, he gets the ball efficiently into his shot pocket and shows balance and a consistent, high release.

Off the catch, the shot is a little different and will need some attention. Dilione gets his guide-hand thumb involved with the release at times when shooting from three. This is a minor thing as it can be worked out with repetitions because his balance and shot release are fine.

While not a great defender, Dilione has the physical tools to be good for the style Rick Barnes plays. His long arms and strong frame will do well on that side of the ball. It should also allow him to be a solid rebounder from the guard position.

Dilione has the strength and burst to be a good finisher at the rim. He can finish above the rim in transition, and he has the balance and some craft to finish in traffic. He finishes well at the rim and has confidence and feel in the mid-range. Synergy had Dilione shooting 48.5 percent from two during the 3SSB Finals and in the six April games, he shot 52.7 percent from two.

Expectations

Scoring is something that comes naturally to Dilione, and the four-star guard has clear upside to be an All-SEC type scorer. There are things he will have to do differently in Knoxville than he does at this current level.

The mentality is the main thing that you hang your hat on when evaluating him. Dilione’s 18.2 shots per game in a five-game stretch show he can find the space and get the shots up. His playing on the ball at the high school level has also enhanced his ability to know his spots and where to attack on the court. While there are off-the-ball aspects we have not seen – footwork, angles using his teammates to get open – he has shown aspects of his game that could work in his favor.

In two or three years, there is upside for him to be a leading scorer in the league. But give him time as he continues to progress his natural talents.

Tennessee’s 2023 class

Three-star PF Cade Phillips

After Dilione and Phillips, Tennessee is still involved with four-star PG Silas Demary, Jr.four-star C J.P. Estrellaand three-star SG Davin Cosby, Jr..

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