The North Carolina grassroots landscape is overflowing with talent, especially with the new transfers and incoming freshman class. However, this article will take a closer look at guys who should be familiar to most, as they’ve remained within the state throughout their playing careers. For one reason or another, their recruitment just recently picked up or is set to take off in the near future. Let’s look…
6’5 Freddie Dilione (Trinity Christian)
Ever since our first viewing at Jr. Phenom Camp in 2017, Dilione has been nothing short of incredible. He’s always possessed the tools to become a highly touted prospect and someone that all types of schools should be pursuing. Dilione is a lethal scoring threat with IQ, toughness, athleticism, defensive prowess, and smooth creation skills. So, why did it take nearly three years to earn his first offer(s)? Well, despite highlighting all his translatable abilities on the court, Dilione’s calm, quiet demeanor seems to leave some coaches with questions. These concerns should ultimately dissipate, as Dilione is a special talent.
6’8 Elijah Gray (Ardrey Kell)
Arguably no prospect on this list has generated more intrigue than Gray throughout the recent years. All the tools were in place, but everything has truly come together over the last six months. Dating back to his younger days, Gray was bigger than most kids and naturally found himself in an interior role. He continued to grow while developing his skillset and began showcasing high-level flashes last summer with Team Synergy. After the high school season, Gray took another step forward. He turned the flashes into extended periods of dominance, highlighting impressive skill, versatility, and started gaining appropriate attention from college coaches. Expect even more programs to get involved with the walking mismatch.
6’5 Nolan Hodge (Northern Guilford)
While the previous two guys were somewhat overlooked and under the radar, Hodge was a relative unknown to most until just recently. It’s been said dozens of times, but his abilities and understanding of the game were always destined to come to fruition. As a young middle-school player, Hodge was already more than capable of running a team and asserting himself as a phenomenal scoring threat. Add strength, athleticism, and five-plus inches (while maintaining his smooth skillset and approach), and the appeal should be obvious. He maintained the guard skills while his body noticeably transformed. Hodge has collected two offers and will earn many more over the next two years.
6’6 Chance Morrow (West Charlotte)
Every year, players similar to Morrow come around and attempt to solidify their case as a Division I talent but usually lack the required skill or polish to get over the hump. However, Morrow is capable of breaking that mold because he’s simply more than just an athlete with a high motor, defensive prowess, and a nose for the ball. He displays IQ, creation skills, and the ability to score the ball in a variety of different ways. Morrow overwhelms opponents with his explosiveness, but also offers a reliable presence on both ends of the floor. Although he is an impressive physical specimen, college coaches should also be enticed by everything else Morrow brings to a team.
6’5 Ryan Roberts (The Burlington School)
Few programs have generated as much buzz as The Burlington School this season, and Roberts should ultimately be a massive part of their success. After enjoying a promising summer season with Garner Road, Roberts is beginning to take his next step as an appealing 3-and-D prospect. He’s maintained his physique and athleticism while starting to shoot the ball at an increased consistency from beyond the arc. When Roberts is hitting shots, it’s difficult to ignore his obvious value at the next level. He’s a capable defender and rebounder with the ability to attack closeouts fairly well. All the tools are in place for Roberts to start attracting college coaches sooner than later.