Under the radar

CLEMSON - When talking about Clemson's nationally ranked recruiting class, Donte Hill probably isn't the first name that usually comes to mind.


After all, the Tigers signed four nationally ranked prospects, including one McDonald's All-American and two other four star players who were considered to be two of the top prospects at their respective positions last year.

But in the grand scheme of things, that's just fine by him.

"To be honest with you, I'd rather kind of be under the radar," Hill told CUTigers.com. "I've always had to work harder than everybody else and that's not going to change.

"It's definitely an honor for me to hear that this class is thought of so highly but I'm not into the brand name of being the highest recruited class at Clemson. I just kind of want to work hard and see what happens."

Hill, who hails from Virginia Beach, Va., averaged 23.5 points, 14 rebounds, and 6.2 assists per game as a senior at Norfolk Collegiate School. He also posted 23 double-doubles and six triple-doubles on his way to being ranked the No. 25 small forward in the nation and a three-star prospect by Scout.com.

"I definitely take pride in my defense and I think that was one of the main reasons Coach Purnell recruited me," he said.
Playing as a combo guard, Hill says his defense in what first caught the eye of the Clemson coaching staff.

"I definitely take pride in my defense and I think that was one of the main reasons Coach Purnell recruited me," he said. "Overall, I'd say I'm more of a nuts and bolts kind of guy- especially for this team because I'm all about defense and rebounds and finding open guys."

The 6-5 standout originally chose the Tigers over Old Dominion and Marquette last August and held firm with his decision through the early signing period.

Often referred to as a Cliff Hammonds-style of player by Purnell, Hill said it was Purnell who made the big difference in his recruitment.

"Coach Purnell- I'm really confident in him. I had a lot of long talks with him [during recruiting]," he said. "That made a big difference for me in wanting to sign with Clemson. Playing in the ACC weighed into my decision. And then I also love the press. I love to take pride in guarding my man and I have a lot of confidence in my defense on the ball."

And now that's he enrolled at Clemson and participating in the Greenville summer leagues, he's ready to bring that confidence to Littlejohn Coliseum this winter.

"I'm getting in the gym as much as I can right now," Hill said. "Everything has been going good so far but if I'm not in class or getting something to eat I'm in the gym working on my shot. And that's exactly what I'll be doing every day until the season starts."

And until then, Donte Hill remains exactly where he wants to be ... under the radar.

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