Is that most wonderful time of the year, well it’s not December yet so it must be about the hooping. Middle School basketball starts this week on Friday with a benefit game between White Station and Bellevue followed by Jamboree all day….they the question is, what teams will you want to see play on Saturday and when the season tips? It’s early but I’ve had a chance to watch a few teams and some teams, you just know are going to be pretty good this season. Lets start the ultra talented, long and intimidating Cordova Middle. This is the favorite to win the state title easily and they have everything you need to do so and not only win it but go undefeated and do it as well. This team is led by 4 top 100 players in the country in 2019 at the head, Joe Cooper, DJ Jeffries who has grown to 6’6 and Shemar Brown who is 6’5. I still haven’t talked about Sky Forrest who is injured right now but will be back soon for this group to complete what maybe the most talented middle school since the days of Cameron Golden and that Craigmont team years back. It’s easy to see why this team is number 1 and will remain that way for the season.
White Station Middle won state last year but did lose a lot however, Coach Mcclain is very optimistic about his team this year with a nice trio of guards and good young group that will make them still be in the hunt late. Expect nice years from Ashton Smith, Ryan Dortch and 6th grader Willie Foreman who is considered by some as the best 2021 player in the city.
Coming in at number 3, the Stallions of Schilling Farms Middle and Toby Taylor. Takori Rooks is 6’3 closing in on 6’4, great size and touch to the free throw line and will man the low block for them scoring off put backs and point black baskets. Jacob Jones will be his running mate on the other block. At 6’2, Jones has some handle to him and good feel for what to do in tight spots. Wouldn’t surprise me to see him be a 3 in the future but right now, he’s better than what some may think. This group should be pretty good and lead their league all year.
Kate Bond has a new Coach and new attitude and the Kodiaks are a team that people should watch closely through out the season because they will get better and better. Their guard play is good and they have inside presence in Kenny Payne, a 6’2 big body who has nimble feet but they will be led by Caleb London who should lead them in scoring, rebounding and be their leader. I think he is a top 10 player in the city, this year is the year he shows it.
At 5, American Way has a really young group, 3 6th graders will play a lot of minutes along with a 7th grader in Deebo Coleman but they will be led by the best 8th grader in the city and one of the top 10 players in the country in 2019, Chandler Lawson. Lawson is nightmare matchup for most teams, extremely versatile, long, he can play every position on the floor and guard most of them, even some point guards with his length. I think at times he can be to unselfish but at his talent level, he can flip the switch and go to a different level if needed. Dee Merriwether will give them shooting and another ball handler as well Donte Horne, a wiry 8th grader who will be able to help them in some games this year.
There you have it, 901PrepScoop’s Top 5 teams in Middle School and with just a few days away till the tip of the season, the fun is just beginning!!!