Team Trae Young Alum Dillon Battie is going to follow in his father’s footsteps and attend Temple University to play for the Owls.
Dillon announced his commitment after fielding offers from Illinois, Ole Miss, Texas Tech, Virginia Tech and Texas A&M among others. But the draw to attend the same school and play in the same program that his father did from 1992-1996 was a strong one and a family visit in September all but cinched his decision.
The hyper-athletic forward is a Temple legacy with a high upside and marks Adam Fisher’s first high school commitment as head coach. Expect the Owls to make more noise shortly https://t.co/I6BP5xC6lp pic.twitter.com/LhXmryYMYr
— Ari Rosenfeld (@ARosenfeldHoops) October 31, 2023
“I was always taught it was a tough program, a good program, and was accustomed to winning. It was given to me at a high respect level, that’s what I heard growing up,” Dillon told Josh Verlin of City of Basketball Love https://www.cityofbasketballlove.com/news_article/show/1290471. “I love the school, I love the campus, I love the city. I love the people, the players, everything there was just all love.”
Derrick Battie played for legendary coach John Chaney at Temple, helping the team to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances, including an Elite Eight berth his freshman season.
The 6-10 forward played in over 100 games for the Owls, averaging 6.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
“Coach Chaney was very clear with us as basketball players that Temple basketball was the lifeline of Temple University, in addition to the great education and great people, that was his opinion, because it was the unique thing that brought everybody together,” Derrick told Verlin. “After seeing what they’ve done with the rebuild, I told Dillon that basketball brought that rebuild.”
At 6-7, Dillon doesn’t quite have the size of his dad, but he makes up for it with athleticism and versatility that allow him to score at every level, put the ball on the floor and make plays for himself and his teammate inside and outside.
“We are extremely excited to welcome Dillon Battie to the Temple Family,” Coach Adam Fisher said. “Dillon’s versatility, athleticism and motor will be a major asset to our program. Dillon has the ability to play inside and outside on both ends of the floor, which stood out to us right away in the recruiting process. We are happy to welcome Dillon and the entire Battie Family back to Temple. Go Owls!”
— Temple Men's Basketball (@TUMBBHoops) November 9, 2023
In his first full season as Temple’s head man this year, Fisher is looking to restore the Owls to the level of respect and success that they enjoyed during Derrick’s playing days under Chaney, who took Temple to the NCAA Tournament 17 times in 24 seasons at the helm and as far as the Elite Eight multiple times despite their standing as an Atlantic 10 mid major.
After a six year tournament drought at the end of Cheney’s career, the Owls made six straight tourneys from 2008 to 2013, but have made it just twice in the 10 years since and are currently in a four year drought entering the 2023-24 season. Dillon believes the Owls, now playing in the AAC, have the talent to end that drought,
“I feel like they’re only one or two players away from being a dominant tournament team, [and] I feel that my commitment really just boosts that,” Battie told Verlin. “I was like, I think if I go there, we have a chance to do something.”
Fisher’s continued pursuit helped too. After taking over Aaron McKie last year, the new coach made Dillon a priority and that mattered to the younger Battie as much as it did to his family.
“He kept it straightforward,” Battie said. “He was like, ‘we really could use you, we appreciate your game, that’s big for us, and yeah we need you to dominate, come in and dominate.’”
Dillon is Temple’s first major commitment from the Class of 2024.