Be Seen - Rise Above Basketball

Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Be Seen - Rise Above Basketball

Rise Above Basketball has been one of the fastest growing programs in New England in recent years. 

Started in 2012 as a youth program, RAB didn’t have their first high school program until five years later with their first graduating class finishing up in 2019. 

In the two years since, they’ve sent over 25 players on to play at the college level with potentially as many as 25 more on the way as part of the class of 2021. 

Last week, we went to the South Shore to check out their Carter/DePaolis squad and found a team full of heavily recruited prospects. 

Sam Stevens is the carry-over from last year’s squad and probably their most recruited player to date. The Mansfield graduate is still just 17 years old heading into his post-grad year at Williston Northampton and already one of the very best shooters in New England. He’s also a late-bloomer, whose added several inches to his frame in recent years, grown into his body, and recently shown more fluidity and athleticism. 

Stevens’ running mate, both this summer as well as at Mansfield, Matt Boen is a dynamic guard with an exciting style and playmaking abilities on both ends of the floor. The southpaw is athletic but also has an element of skill to his game and has been showing out in recent weeks on the Zero Gravity Circuit, and yet remains under-recruited to date. 

Rivers guard Nick Johnson is another highly coveted southpaw guard. Quick and compact, he’s consistently able to make plays for himself and others on the offensive end of the floor but is also the team’s best defender. He has also vastly improved his ability to knock down open looks from behind the arc. 

While the team is loaded on the perimeter, Tyler Stewart anchors the club on the interior. Coming off a huge junior season at Taunton, Stewart provides a true low post scorer who can operate with his back to the basket and typically just bully less physical players inside the paint. 

This is a group that also has plenty of sleepers. Bishop Stang’s Declan Markey and Hingham’s Steven White were two players that definitely made an impression in the practice we watched. 

Markey was previously under our radar and even a late addition to this team, but one who has been more than proving his worth in recent weeks. The lefty is pretty quick and athletic with a college-ready pull-up game in the mid-range area and the potential to develop into a three-range scoring guard. 

White has good perimeter size at 6-foot-4 and versatile weapons. He’s best known for his ability to make shots from the outside right now but showed some glimpses of being able to put the ball on the floor effectively too. He’s also long with potential on the defensive end. 

Connor White, the other half of the White twins, is an intriguing long-term prospect with good size, length, and touch to develop as he continues to fill-out his frame and grow into his body. 

Hanover’s Andrew Rocci may have been the most improved player in the gym. He’s in the best shape of his career to date, and has reportedly shed 20 pounds in recent months. He was also on fire from behind the three-point line and reportedly “hasn’t missed this month” according to one teammate. 

Ben Kelsey is another forward who has made nice strides with his skill-set as he showed some budding versatility at 6-foot-5 with his ability to put the ball on the floor and be deceptively quick off the bounce. 

Taunton guard Josh Lopes has reportedly been putting in long-arms on the blacktop in recent months and it showed as he was splashing jumpers and getting the rim alike. 

While the roster is comprised entirely of prospects in the class of 2021, there is one exception and that’s Milton Academy’s Gavin Carter. Now, Carter may be the nephew of program director Brendan Carter, but he’s also clearly the best long-term prospect in the program and has made considerable long-term strides in the last ten months. First and foremost, his physique is almost unrecognizable relative to what we saw at last fall’s Elite 75 Frosh/Soph, but his skill-set was equally impressive as he was knocking down threes, floaters, tough pull-ups, and seeing the entire floor as true point guards should. 

From top to bottom, everything we saw from this program was impressive – the way the practice was organized, the coaching, the quality of the prospects, and most of all, the rapid rate at which the program has grown across the board in recent years.