Freddie Dilione V has been ruled out for No. 7 Tennessee in the Maui Invitational this week due to a partial tear of his left plantar fascia. The redshirt freshman guard was injured in the first half Tuesday in the win over Wofford at Thompson-Boling Arena.
Tennessee (3-0) announced Dilione’s injury status before facing Syracuse (3-0) in the first round of the Maui Invitational (2:30 p.m. Eastern Time, ESPN2) at Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu.
Head coach Rick Barnes spoke to reporters Friday night but didn’t have a clear update or timetable for the return of Dilione.
“What I heard is partial tear in his plantar (fascia) down there,” Barnes said during a Zoom press conference. “But I haven’t even asked about time table yet. I think it varies on the degree that it’s partially torn. Other than that, I don’t know what to tell you. That’s what I remember them telling me about it.”
The Vols will play three games in three days during their stay in the Hawaii, facing either No. 2 Purdue or No. 11 Gonzaga on Tuesday. The championship game and consolation games will take place on Wednesday.
Barnes said the timeline for Dilione will depend on what progress is made following the results from the MRI performed Wednesday morning. The Vols flew to Honolulu on Thursday and held their first practice their on Friday.
“He’d been having some problems with it and he was trying to push through every thing he could,” Barnes said. “During the (Wofford) game he just said he felt something pop and he partially tore it.”
Freddie Dilione V exited in the first half against Wofford on Tuesday
Dilione didn’t play in the second half Tuesday night against Wofford after exiting with a limp in the first half. He played two minutes in No. 7 Tennessee 82-61 win before leaving the game.
Barnes said Tuesday after the game that Dilione told Tennessee staffers that he felt a pop in his foot.
“His arches have been hurting him,” Barnes said during his postgame press conference Tuesday night, “and he just said he felt like something popped and we actually had a MRI scheduled for tomorrow morning anyway so it comes at a good time. He’ll be able to get it (MRI) early in the morning and we’ll see.”
Dilione was scoreless in three minutes in the 80-70 win at Wisconsin last week. He didn’t play in the game in the second half. He had seven points in 16 minutes against Tennessee Tech last week in the season-opening win over Tennessee Tech, going 3-for-5 from the field with three rebounds and three assists.
Up Next: No. 7 Tennessee vs. Syracuse, 2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2
Dilione was a four-star prospect in the 2023 recruiting class out of Word of God Christian Academy in Fayetteville, N.C. He’s was ranked No. 44 overall prospect nationally according to the On3 Industry Ranking. He was ranked No. 3 among shooting guards and No. 1 in the state of North Carolina.
He finished his high school career in January, leaving to enroll early in Knoxville to start his career at Tennessee.
During Tennessee’s three exhibition games in Italy in August, Dilione played 66 minutes, 19 seconds. He scored 33 points and had 16 assists to go with seven steals and six turnovers. He went 13-for-33 from the field, 3-for-13 from the 3-point line and 4-for-6 at the free-throw line.
No. 7 Tennessee, Syracuse, No. 2 Purdue and No. 11 Gonzaga make up one half of a loaded Maui bracket, with No. 1 Kansas, No. 4 Marquette, UCLA and Chaminade on the other side.
Another road test awaits Tennessee after the Hawaii trip, with a game at North Carolina on November 29 in the first edition of the ACC-SEC Challenge. It’s a 7:15 p.m. ET start on ESPN at the Dean Smith Center in Chapel Hill.