The NBA has the basketball world in a frenzy after an eventful first two weeks of the season. The NBA isn′t the only basketball out there, though, high school basketball is on the horizon. Oak Hill Academy has already started their season, one of the few high school teams that play over 40 games in a season. The rest of the top programs around the country are set to begin their 2016-17 campaign in the upcoming weeks.
For the first time in 4 year history, we are going to begin something new for the top players in the country called ″Fan-I Favorites″. This will be very similar to our annual ″Five Percenter″ list where we ranked the top 5 players at each position in the NFL and NBA, but Fan-I Favorites will be all about who we enjoy watching and covering. The list will include players from all over the country and does not go by rankings which can be a little overrated, though, the players on this list can be considered best of their position.
Gary Trent Jr. ′17, Prolific Prep (Duke)
If you look at Trent Jr. it will be hard for you to believe that he is only a senior in high school, then watching him play, you′ll want to see his birth certificate. The 6′5 guard is a true scorer, and he knows how to use his solid frame. During the EYBL season, he scored 46 points at the Hampton session, shooting 48% from the field and 42% from behind the arc. His squad, Howard Pulley, walked into the Nike Peach Jam with the best record, while he finished the season third in scoring. Hailing from Minnesota, Tyus Young old stomping grounds, Trent Jr. will be the next big hoop star to come out of the state. Whoever he decides to play his college ball for, they will be getting a future leading scorer.
Collin Sexton ′17, Pebblebrook High School (Alabama)
Sexton is probably the best pure scorer in the class of 2017. It′s not just because he can score from anywhere on the court, but also he has the ″Mamba Mentality″ so early in his basketball career. Sexton does not care who you are or where you′ve played before, he is trying to kill you on the court. He is the high school version of Kevin Garnett, as you′ll see him talking to himself and others throughout the game. He led the Nike EYBL in scoring this past summer, averaging 32 points per game. At 6′3 it will be interesting to see what college he chooses and how they will decide to use him.
Lindell Wigginton ′17, Oak Hill Academy (Iowa State)
Wigginton popped up on our radar during Oak Hill′s championship run at the Dick′s Nationals last season. Of course, he is a great player if he is playing at Oak Hill, but his style is fun to watch. A very aggressive scorer that plays fast and hard. He attacks the basket hard and will put his bottom on the line to get a bucket. Apart of the new wave of Canadian basketball players, Wiggington will be another one of Canada′s star.
Brian Bowen ′17, La Lumiere (Uncommitted)
Bowen is listed as a small forward, the third best in the country according to ESPN, but at 6′7 190lbs, Bowen fits more a shooting guard description. His game is a little unorthodox but he still gets buckets. Bowen is probably the best shooter on the list, with great ability to shoot the mid-range and trey-ball. The mid-range game still lives on thanks to Bowen. The extraordinary wing can create a shot even when one is not there, especially off the dribble. Whether at the 2 or the 3, Bowen will be one of the top scorers in the country this season.
Hamidou Diallo ′17, Putnam Science Academy (Kentucky)
Chaundee Brown ′17, First Academy (Wake Forest)