Syracuse Basketball: 4-star big man to officially visit, great sign for Orange

Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) /

Donnie Freeman, a four-star big man in the 2024 class from Washington, D.C., said via Twitter on Thursday that he will take an official visit to Syracuse basketball from April 6 to April 8.

This is awesome news. Late last week, Orange head coach Adrian Autry traveled to St. John’s College High School in Washington to meet with the ultra-talented, 6-foot-9 power forward.

Now Freeman will officially visit the Hill in the near future. He is a standout junior at St. John’s College High School, which has been one of the best squads nationwide during the 2022-23 season.

Freeman, named to the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference (“WCAC”) All-League first team for the 2022-23 term, suits up in grassroots basketball for the D.C.-based Team Takeover in Nike’s EYBL league.

Syracuse basketball will soon get a visit from 2024 four-star big man Donnie Freeman.

Autry, a while back, was a coach for Team Takeover when it was known as Triple Threat. Additionally, SU Athletics announced on Thursday that Brenden Straughn has joined the ‘Cuse as an assistant coach, and he was an assistant and later the associate head coach at Team Takeover.

The Orange coaching staff’s deep recruiting ties in the Washington metropolitan region, and specifically with Team Takeover, could help Syracuse basketball ultimately land Freeman. At least that’s my hope.

Freeman said in a recent interview with SyracuseOnSI publisher Mike McAllister that the ‘Cuse is among the college squads recruiting him hard these days. For what it’s worth, under Freeman’s bio on the 247Sports Web site, the interest level is listed as warm for both Syracuse basketball and Alabama. Freeman took an official visit to the Crimson Tide this past January.

The Orange offered a scholarship to Freeman in August of 2021. It was the first offer made by ‘Cuse coaches to a player in the junior cycle. At the time of this writing, the industry-generated 247Sports Composite rated Freeman as No. 28 across the country, No. 4 at power forward and No. 1 in the District of Columbia within the 2024 class.

His offer sheet includes LSU, Kansas State, Pittsburgh, Iowa, Texas, Rutgers, Marquette, Bryant, Ole Miss, VCU, Norfolk State, Alabama, Maryland, Georgetown, Virginia Tech, Xavier, George Mason and Old Dominion.

Last November, Donnie Freeman revealed a top five of Rutgers, Maryland, Iowa, LSU and Texas, but roughly a month later, he said that his recruitment remained open. McAllister reported in late January of this year that Syracuse basketball was back in the mix for Freeman.

While recruiting processes of top-flight prospects can ebb and flow, given that Autry recently met with Freeman, Freeman is taking an upcoming official visit to the ‘Cuse, and the Orange coaching staff has stellar recruiting connections in the D.C. market, my sense is that Syracuse basketball could emerge as one of the favorites to land Freeman.

To date, the ‘Cuse has one verbal commitment in the junior cycle, from four-star shooting guard Elijah Moore out of Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx, N.Y.

Other 2024 players who are being pursued by Syracuse basketball include four-star point guard Curtis Givens III from the Montverde Academy in Montverde, Fla., four-star guard Jalil Bethea of Archbishop Wood Catholic High School in Warminster, Pa., and four-star big man Thomas Sorber with Archbishop Ryan High School in Philadelphia.

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