In our new series “Where are they now?” we take a look at former Ohio State basketball players and see what they’ve been up to since their playing careers in Columbus ended. Many continue to compete on the hardwood at various levels, while others have begun coaching, gone back to school, and even started careers in the entertainment industry. Today, we’ll look at former Ohio State guard Amedeo Della Valle.
Della Valle, a 6-foot-5 combo guard from Alba, Italy, signed with Thad Matta’s Buckeyes on May 1, 2012. He was the only member of Ohio State’s 2012 recruiting class, and was classified as a three-star recruit according to 247Sports.
Della Valle moved from Italy to Las Vegas before his senior year of high school, playing his final year of high school basketball at Findlay Prep. He set the school’s single-season record for 3-pointers that season with 66. Aside from Ohio State, six other schools also showed interest in him, including Michigan, Gonzaga, Arizona, and UCLA.
In his freshman season of 2012-2013, Della Valle played 7.2 minutes per game, appearing in 15 games total. He averaged 2.5 points per game to go along with 1.5 rebounds and also shot 38.5% from 3-point range. Ohio State’s 2012 team included guards Aaron Craft, Lenzelle Smith Jr., and Shannon Scott, making playing time tough to come by for the youthful, floppy-haired freshman. The Buckeyes would finish the season 29-8, losing to Wichita State in the Elite Eight.
During his sophomore year, Della Valle played in 33 of Ohio State’s 35 games, coming off the bench in all 33 of them. His minutes increased to 11.9 per game, and his scoring output jumped to four points per game. Despite the increase in playing time, his three-point percentage dropped to a paltry 32.4%.
One of Della Valle’s best performances as a Buckeye came on March 14, 2014 against Nebraska in the Big Ten Tournament. Down 18 with just under 14 minutes to play, Thad Matta pulled the “Italian Stallion” off the bench. Della Valle responded by chipping in nine points over the final 14 minutes, finishing with 12 points, 6 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 2 steals in Ohio State’s 71-67 win over the Huskers.
(The Deo’ Show starts at 0:56)
Ohio State would end up going 25-10 that season, losing to 11th-seeded Dayton in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Also, in the spring of 2014, Della Valle ran for President of Ohio State’s Undergraduate Student Government as a write-in candidate, with Sam “Slam” Thompson on the ticket as VP and the team managers running the campaign. The hashtag #Vote4Deo was started in an attempt to stir up support for Della Valle and his last-minute attempt at the presidency.
Below we have his campaign announcement, which somehow I’d never seen before today (I guess that shows you how his campaign went). Half of his campaign announcement is just him teaching the Ohio State student body how to spell his name. The Della Valle/ Thompson ticket garnered 479 votes, good for fifth place.
Whether it was due to the disappointment of a failed campaign or a season that ended abruptly to another Ohio school, Della Valle announced that he was leaving Ohio State on March 22, 2014, just two days after their season-ending loss to the Dayton Flyers in the NCAA Tournament.
It's been real THE Ohio State University.Thank you for everything.Best experience of my life.Thank you BuckeyeNation! pic.twitter.com/2FYJBlEZRt— Amedeo Della Valle (@AmeDV8) March 22, 2014
ADV returned to Italy and signed with Grissin Bon Reggio Emilia of the EuroCup and Serie-A, where he would make the equivalent of $300,000 per year for the next four seasons. His most successful season to date came in 2017, when he scored 17.5 points per game as well as 3.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. He also competed on team Italy in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. Playing alongside NBA players Danillo Gallinari and Marco Belinelli, he averaged 6.2 points, 1.2 assists, and 1.2 rebounds per game. He also hit all six of his free throws. Italy placed 11th in the tournament, going 3-2.
After four seasons with Grissin Bon Reggio, Della Valle signed a multi-year contract with Olimpia Milano, another Italian EuroLeague squad, in 2018. Currently, in his second season with Milano, he was averaging 5.9 points per game and shooting 50% from 3-point range through 21 games before the season was suspended due to the spread of COVID-19.
While he’s already put together quite the resume overseas, “Deo” is still only 27 years old and is nowhere near finished with his playing career. We hope for nothing but continued health and success for Amadeo in his EuroLeague career.