North Mecklenburg better than expected
Last season, North Mecklenburg finished 27-2 and was upset in the NCHSAA 4A Regional Sectionals. They lost three year starter point guard Vaud Worthy to graduation. Nationally ranked 6’8 Jaelyn Withers (Louisville commit) moved to Ohio and Myles Hunter transferred to Carmel Christian. The Vikings are much smaller than previous years, but after watching them manhandle a very good Farmville Central at our Phenom High School Jamboree and beat Nation Ford 80-50 at the Bojangles Bash, they may just be the surprise team in the NCHSAA 4A classification. They are more balanced and better defensively and have a nice blend of talent. 6’2 junior Tristan Maxwell will lead the way, but 6’5 sophomore Chris Ford will bring a blue-collar workmanlike approach to each and every game, not to mention the point guard play of Demar Anderson. In addition, you have the likes of De’Drick Givens, Shamann Artis, and Daqon Stewart that will add plenty of support along the way.
Southwest Guilford Should be Ranked Nationally
With Greensboro Day dropping to Piedmont Classical and Independence dropping to Village Christian earlier this year, Carmel Christian is the only NC team who is ranked currently. That said, they should not be alone as Southwest Guilford has the talent, the style of play, the schedule and the winning tradition to be among the nation’s best. They are led by a pair of the most winning players in North Carolina, Kobe and Keyshaun Langley. When you add in the likes of 6’6″ Jayden Turner, 6’5″ Joe’l Pettiford, and 6’4″ Christian Martin who are each scholarship level players. Off the bench you have Cam Thompson and Amilia Huggins who have been there and play stifling defense.
They currently stand 5-0 with an average margin of victory at 26.6. Their closest game was a 15 point spread. They’re averaging 80 points per game while shooting 52% from the field, dishing out 18 assists per game and grabbing 25 boards per game. This is a complete team, with depth and state championship winning experience and great coaching. All the ingredients to be nationally ranked. With that said, take a look at South Central, Millbrook and Holly Springs to possibly pop up on national rakings in January if they can remain undefeated.
IMG’s Jarace Walker will be the top-ranked prospect in 2022
Right now, everyone is talking about Emoni Bates and how he’s clearly the can’t-miss prospect in the Class of 2022. However, Jarace Walker has a legitimate case for eventually overthrowing Bates’ number one ranking and claiming it for himself. Both players are able to dominate due to their combination of size, skill, and athleticism, but Walker already possesses an elite-level frame with strength. Bates is already doing whatever he desires on the basketball court, but there are obvious concerns about his wiry frame and whether he’ll be able to add enough strength for the next level. The way Walker can affect all areas of the game is truly special, as he has no real flaws or holes within his skillset. This is certainly not a knock on Bates, it just looks like Walker is poised to become a superstar and should learn an ample amount from his role with IMG Academy.
The Money Is In The Crumbs: