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Dillow takes aim at Wilmington

PEDRO – T.

Saturday, August 14, 1999

PEDRO – T. J. Dillow was a dead-eye shot in high school. Now he’ll take a shot at college basketball. After shooting better than 50 percent from 3-point range and averaging nearly 16 points a game for the Rock Hill Redmen, Dillow has signed to play at Wilmington College.

"I’m looking forward to playing college basketball. I just wanted to have a chance," said Dillow. "It’ll be a little different than I’m used to. I just have to go do what I can do and play the way I can."

Dillow’s deadly 3-point shooter and that is one of the reason Wilmington coach Scott Stemple went after the Rock Hill graduate.

"T. J. is a hard working player who possesses excellent perimeter skills, and with proper development we believe he will be an asset to our basketball program and the Wilmington College community," said Stemple.

Dillow has spent the summer working to develop his game. He said running and lifting weights have helped him become more than just a shooter.

"It’ll be more physical, so I have been working this summer to get stronger and quicker. Right now I am stronger and I’m jumping better," said Dillow. "Last year I tried to contribute more than just shooting the ball. I tried to go to the boards. I know my role will be different at Wilmington."

Stemple agreed with Dillow’s assessment and praised his work ethic.

"He has an athlete’s mentality and has the potential to be a player. He’s scrappy and competitive. He played for a good coach who prepared him and I think a big part of it was that he wanted to be at Wilmington. He’ll need to get stronger, but I think he shows the toughness," said Stemple.

"We’ve got some kids coming back at his position, but at this level it’s year-to-year. Injuries and that kind of stuff can change your roster overnight. I like kids like him. It will be a challenge. It always is for freshmen."

Dillow said he is willing to meet the challenge.

"Coach didn’t make any promises, but he said if I showed I could play, I would and I’d get some playing time," said Dillow.

Stemple will play Dillow as the two guard, the same position he played in high school. However, Dillow said the style of play may not be the same.

"I think they’re more of a slow down team. It’ll be a little different than I’m used to, but that’s okay. I’ll adjust," said Dillow. "I know this is good basketball. The difference here and Division I is the size of the athletes."

Dillow selected Wilmington over several schools including Tiffin and Shawnee State.

"A lot of it had to do with basketball and a chance to play. My sister went to Wilmington and I knew what it was like That is what pulled me toward it at the end," said Dillow.

T. J. is the son of Jeff and Becky Dillow.