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Four-star center JP Estrella commits to Tennessee

Rick Barnes secures a big.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 06 Kentucky at Tennessee Photo by Bryan Lynn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Rick Barnes and Tennessee basketball stayed hot on the recruiting trail on Friday, picking up a commitment from four-star center JP Estrella. The 6-11, 210 pound prospect out of Maine picked the Volunteers over Syracuse and Iowa this afternoon.

Estrella’s stock has exploded over the past ten months, as the once little-known big man has come all the way up to inside of the top 50 players overall, per 247Sports. Rick Barnes and his staff found him early on, and today that early work pays off.

According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Estrella is the 40th ranked player in the country. He’s the seventh ranked center prospect in the 2023 class.

Interestingly enough, Estrella has grown eight inches since his freshman year of high school. A 6-3 frame became a 6-11 frame, and the offers flooded in after. Duke, Kansas, Wisconsin, Louisville and UConn were just a few of the other offers he received this year.

With that relatively new size, Estrella is still growing his game around it. He’ll obviously need to get stronger, but he’s a guy that can shoot, protect the rim and handle the ball. He’s an exciting prospect, another one that this staff can mold quite a bit over the next couple of years.

Estrella joins high four-star guard Freddie Dillione and three-star power forward Cade Phillips in the class. The Volunteers are also going after four-star sharpshooter Davin Cosby, who is also on the rise in the latest batch of rankings. If they can reel in Cosby, this class could be finished with a couple openings left for potential transfer targets.