#BeSeen Prep Profile - NMH

Tuesday, October 6th, 2020

#BeSeen Prep Profile - NMH

The Be Seen Tour’s prep school swing began at Northfield Mount Hermon School, with a program that has prided itself on providing the best combination of academics and athletics in the country for the last decade. 

The results speak for themselves. 40 plays in the Ivy League since 2006. 7 trips to the Final Four of the National Prep Championship in the last 8 years. 3 NEPSAC titles in the last 5 years. A National Championship in 2013. 

This year though, the challenges are unprecedented, for all prep programs.  

The global pandemic has prevented college coaches from being in the gym, limited the amount of scholarships being offered, and created uncertainty about the upcoming season. 

NMH has set the standard though when it comes to responding to those challenges. 

First and foremost, came the creation of a second team as the program now features a total of 25 players ranging from post-grads to freshmen. 

Next came the protocols for player safety which have proven to be ironclad thus far. 

Finally, came the avenues for development and exposure. NMH constructed a brand-new outdoor court with 6 break-away rims, allowing them to play right away when players arrived in August. 

They’ve also made terrific use of technology. Not only is every workout recorded, but the program has set-up a unique system of google docs for college coaches, allowing them access to player specific video highlights, transcripts, and contact information at the click of a button. 

And of course…there’s plenty of talent. 

The class of 2021 includes 10 prospects, 4 of whom are back from last year’s team. 

New England’s most notable late-bloomer Gus Larson came off the board to Pennsylvania last week while post-graduate guard Sam Klores is committed to Brown, giving NMH their two latest Ivy League pledges. 

Senior big man Jake Tavroff has made huge strides, both with his body and his game. He obviously put the months of quarantine to good use as he’s powerful and in the best shape of his life. He’s consequently able to assert himself in the paint and has also started to gradually extend his game away from the rim as well. 

Reece Clark has shown a similar level of commitment, as he too is in the best shape of his life and also shooting the ball at an unprecedented clip. Kekoa McArdle has pinpointed the niche of his game as he’s blossomed into a rugged enforcer inside the paint, but one who can still operate efficiently within an intricate system. 

Cole Bott, a 6-foot-7 forward from Denver, headlines the newcomers as his combination of size and skill has led to a steady diet of D1 suitors. Ezra Moos and Evan Portnoi are a pair of 6-foot-6 forwards who are both about as high academically as you can be while being equally efficient and heady on the hardwood. Albert Fallas though, may have the highest IQ of anyone on the roster, as the point guard from California is already like a coach on the floor. 

The class of 2022 is poised to be one of the best in program history. There are four returners who all have early division I recruitment. In fact, the point guard tandem of Avery Brown and Rowan Brumbaugh each already have high-major recruitment. Both have brought their games to new levels since last season and should be poised to form one of New England’s best perimeter tandems for the next two seasons. Kyle Squires made great strides with his game last season and is now ready to contribute on a consistent basis while Luke Hunger is a highly skilled, floor-spacing big man. 

The newcomers in the junior class are just as talented. Blair Thompson is a jumbo-wing from New York with some legitimate guard skills who has exceeded all expectations since his arrival and has some star potential.  Christian Moore is a powerful combo-forward from Los Angeles who provides a very versatile mismatch problem. Jorn Everson, a 6-foot-8 forward from North Dakota, is also versatile as he shoots it with range but can also operate around the paint. Peter Carey is the local product, who was a virtual unknown at this time last year, and only just beginning to scratch the surface of his distant long-term potential. Ben Chasin provided another three-point sniper with solid perimeter size while Otto Luessenhoop is a well-built 6-foot-7 forward who has played his way up after years with the program’s second team. 

There are also five true underclassmen in the program. Will Franks, a 6-foot-7 sophomore and the younger brother of program alum Davis Franks, is the most notable long-term prospect as a budding big and skilled wing. Asad Syed is a junior boarding school product who distinguished himself across the board at Fessenden while John Adams is a talented local product. David Ayles and Stivan Kalchev are two freshmen who will have the benefit of learning from experience on a daily basis. 

Overall, there’s more players here than ever before, but more importantly, there’s solutions to all of the unprecedented problems that COVID-19 has brought to high school and prep programs throughout the country as NMH head coach John Carroll has continued to keep his program at the forefront of prep school basketball, all while staying true to their commitment to academics and leadership development, even in these unique times.