Florida Basketball Freshman Profile: Denzel Aberdeen

Sep 22, 2018; Knoxville, TN, USA; Florida Gators logo in Neyland Stadium before a game with the Tennessee Volunteers. Mandatory Credit: Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 22, 2018; Knoxville, TN, USA; Florida Gators logo in Neyland Stadium before a game with the Tennessee Volunteers. Mandatory Credit: Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports /

As Coach Golden takes the reigns of the Florida basketball program, he gets to bring in his first ever Florida recruiting class. His inaugural recruits include the names Denzel AberdeenRiley Kugel, and Aleksander Szymczyk. These three freshman are the newest to join the Gators, and their first year development could be huge for the future of the program.

Leading into their first years in Gainesville, Hail Florida Hail is going to take the time to highlight each recruit and let our Gators fans learn more about these young talents.

To start off, we will look at Florida native, Denzel Aberdeen.

Player Overview: Denzel Aberdeen

Aberdeen was a four-star recruit coming out of Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, Florida. This 2x All-State guard took his alma mater to its first state championship game and scored 27 points to seal its first championship in program history.

In his senior season, Denzel averaged 14.4 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 3.1 assists. These numbers were impressive enough to have earned offers from Illinois, Virginia Tech, and Cincinnati among other schools. Despite his high number of interested and prestigious programs, Aberdeen elected to stay in his home state of Florida and play for the Gators.

Highlight video via Jorrdan McCray TV

Aberdeen’s Fit as a Gator

Aberdeen is a 6’5 point guard with the ability to change directions quickly, handle the ball tightly, and shoot comfortably from outside the arc. What makes him the perfect fit for Golden’s system?

His skill running the floor in transition.

Aberdeen has speed and an uncanny ability to finish through contact (his positional size is an advantage). This helps him run the floor, collapse defenses into the paint, and leave open shooters on the perimeter, and Golden wants lots of open shooters.

Aberdeen also has something not a lot of players have, a comfort in big moments. End of game, late clock, tight moments – he is not afraid to have the ball in his hands and take big time shots. His one-on-one skill, finishing ability, quickness, and agility all make him a matchup nightmare and with time could be a big time player for the Gators.

Aberdeen’s Role in 2022-23

Coming into his freshman season, Aberdeen will likely not see much playing time. Golden’s freshman typically play a minimal amount minutes, usually no more than five. Aberdeen is in a tough spot playing behind both Trey Bonham and Kyle Lofton. Both of these guards have NCAA experience, and on paper will leave Aberdeen at the bottom of the rotation until Lofton moves on.

However, what could be interesting would be seeing Aberdeen get minutes at the shooting guard position. It would be another battle with Myreon Jones and Will Richard above him, but having another excellent ball handler and shot creator on the floor could make for a huge 1-2 punch for the Florida offense.

In Summary

Denzel Aberdeen is the perfect player that Coach Golden dreamt of when he thought of a recruit. A tall guard who is comfortable shooting, can handle the ball, run the floor, and attract defensive attention. Aberdeen is exactly the kind of guard who can lead a three-point shooting offense.

Though his freshman season might give him little exposure, I fully believe that his development under Golden and some experienced guards could lead to some serious minutes in his future years. Aberdeen, if he continues to work and make the most of his opportunities in Gainesville, could be a starting NCAA point guard.