Syracuse Basketball: 4-star commit Donnie Freeman to IMG, super league

Syracuse basketball, Donnie Freeman (Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball, Donnie Freeman (Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) /

Syracuse basketball fans, in the upcoming 2023-24 high-school hoops season, should have the opportunity to check out Orange 2024 four-star commit Donnie Freeman from Washington, D.C., on some national broadcasts.

That’s because the 6-foot-9 Freeman, a talented power forward who verbally committed to the ‘Cuse in May, is transferring to a powerhouse program in the Sunshine State for his senior year.

Freeman, who recently entered the top 20 in his class per MADE Hoops, said via social media on Tuesday that he is transferring for the 2023-24 term to the juggernaut IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.

The Ascenders, year in and year out, are one of the elite high-school squads around the country. They compete in the nation’s top high-school hoops league, the 10-member National Interscholastic Basketball Conference (“NIBC”).

This past spring, IMG was one of eight squads to compete in the prestigious GEICO Nationals, with the Ascenders reaching the semifinals of this annual tournament. With Donnie Freeman on board, IMG should compete for a NIBC regular-season championship as well as another berth in the GEICO Nationals.

The Ascenders also will likely be deemed a preseason top-10 to top-15 nationally ranked group ahead of 2023-24.

Syracuse basketball 2024 four-star commit Donnie Freeman is moving on to IMG.

In May, Freeman verbally committed to the Orange over other finalists Alabama, Iowa, Texas and Georgia Tech. The primary recruiting services currently have him hovering between the top 30 to the 40 nationally (and No. 1 in our nation’s capital), and I believe that Donnie Freeman is a contender for five-star status in the 2024 class, as well as a candidate for the next McDonald’s All-American game.

As a junior during the 2022-23 campaign, Freeman was excellent in helping lead the nationally ranked St. John’s College High School in Washington, D.C., to a 32-4 overall record and the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference (“WCAC”) tournament title.

In his junior season, Donnie Freeman received an honorable-mention nod from MaxPreps for its 2022-23 All-America teams in the 2024 cycle. Among other accolades, he was also named to The Washington Post’s All-Met first team and the WCAC All-League first squad.

Last month, Freeman played a key role as the D.C.-based Team Takeover in Nike’s EYBL league claimed the 17U title at the annual Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C., with Syracuse basketball coaches reportedly in attendance during a portion of this event when it was an NCAA live period.

For his efforts in July, the experts at The Circuit placed Donnie Freeman on their All-Peach Jam first team, as he averaged 12.9 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists per encounter.

Several IMG players have headed to the Hill after suiting up for the Ascenders’ national team or its post-grad squad, including former center Jesse Edwards, who is now at West Virginia, junior forward Benny Williams, sophomore guard/wing Justin Taylor and sophomore guard/wing Quadir Copeland.

The NIBC is expected to have some of its 2023-24 games on national broadcasts, and Syracuse basketball recruiting enthusiasts will be able to watch several Orange targets, as well as Freeman, compete.

Besides Donnie Freeman heading to IMG, prospects who will play in the NIBC in 2023-24 and hold ‘Cuse scholarship offers include 2025 four-star shooting guard Kiyan Anthony, 2025 five-star point guard Jerry Easter II and 2025 four-star combo guard Darius Adams.

Anthony, as a junior, is suiting up for another powerhouse NIBC team, Long Island Lutheran High School in Brookville, N.Y. In 2022-23, Long Island Lutheran finished second in the NIBC’s regular-season race, and the Crusaders participated in this spring’s GEICO Nationals. IMG, by the way, finished in a tie for third in the NIBC’s regular stanza.

Easter and Adams, meanwhile, both transferred to the La Lumiere School in La Porte, Ind., this off-season, and they will form a strong backcourt for the Lakers. La Lumiere has absolutely loaded up its 2023-24 roster with Easter, Adams and several other highly rated prospects.

The Lakers, in 2022-23, struggled in NIBC play. However, high-school hoops experts are projecting La Lumiere in the upcoming season to contend for an NIBC regular-season crown, as well as an invite to the 2024 GEICO Nationals.

I’m excited to see what Donnie Freeman will do on the court in 2023-24, as he plays for one of the best programs out there in IMG, while facing elite competition.

Next. Syracuse Basketball: If 5-star commits, 2024 class may be No. 1 nationally. dark