Updated 2016 Rankings Announced
It’s been a long time coming but updated 2016 rankings are now live in New England and there’s been lots of movement.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the region’s top overall prospect as Omari Spellman might have gone down with an injury on day one of the July evaluation period but had already done enough to solidify his spot after strong showings at the Nike Skills Academy and NBA Camp.
Maintaining the top spot is going to be no easy task though with Wenyen Gabriel, Mustapha Heron and Bruce Brown all making claims of their own. Gabriel, who had perhaps a bigger breakout summer than any other player in the country, has moved all the way up to the two spot, but all four of these guys are sure-fire top 50 prospects in the country, if not higher.
The 2016 rankings definitely have a tier like structure to them. While that first foursome sits head and shoulders above the rest of the field, up next is a handful of big men who could all challenge for spots in the national top 100 and are so close to one another that you could organize them any way and be able to justify it.
Mamadou Diarra had another strong summer beginning with a good showing at the Under Armour All-American Camp while Tyrique Jones was an absolute monster early in the month and arguably the key to NY Rens’ championship at the Adidas Gauntlet Finale. Chris Baldwin was the epitome of consistency all summer long on the Adidas circuit, while Kevin Marfo backed up his breakout spring with another solid summer and Eddie Ekiyor lived up to his high-major hype.
In total, we’ve expanded our New England rankings to include the top 50 prospects in the 2016 class, but have not yet included players that will be arriving for the first time this fall.
Spellman’s transfer into St. Thomas More makes him the top ranked prospect in CT while Heron remains far and away the best in the public ranks. Christian Vital checks in right after Diarra and was another stock-riser this summer as were a group of swingmen that included Watkinson’s Mike Sagay, Holy Cross’ Tyrn Flowers, Cheshire Academy’s Elijah Pemberton and St. Thomas More’s E.J. Crawford. In total, we’ve ranked 20 players in Connecticut’s rising senior class including first timers like Mark Carbone and Dominique Senat.
Spellman’s transfer opened a door and Gabriel’s break-out summer thrust him right though it, as the Wilbraham & Monson forward takes over as Massachusetts’ top ranked player. His frontcourt mate with the Mass Rivals, Chris Baldwin, climbs up to the second spot after a huge month of his own while Marfo, A.J. Brodeur and Jordy Tshimanga are right behind, showcasing the depth and talent of big men in the state. Jake Ross, Brandon Twitty, Kyle Doucette, Nick Seretta, Matt Karpowicz, Jordan Scurry and Brenden Vessichio are among the first-timers ranked in the state’s top 20.
With post-graduate rosters yet to arrive at Bridgton and Lee, there are plenty of local names on this list beginning with Andrew Fleming, the Oxford Hills forward who continued to generate a wide-variety of scholarship level interest throughout the month. Shyheim Ulrickson and Nicholas Gilpin clearly rounded out the top three, while the exact order of that second and third spot could probably have gone either way. Another point guard, Thomas Coyne, is in at four while Jack Lesure, Hunter Smith and Milo Belleau all make their debuts in the state’s top 10.
If there is one state in New England that is going to get boosted by the arrival of prep talent, it’s the Granite State, but there’s still plenty of high level guys already in place. Ekiyor sits in the top while his New Hampton teammates Jimbo Lull and Donovan Love both helped themselves over the course of the grassroots season as well. James Foye and Tommy Mobley, who will play side-by-side next season at Phillips Exeter, were both summer stock-risers and themselves among the state’s top ten. Keith Brown headlines the newcomers to the list.
Our Rhode Island rankings have now expanded to ten and that means it doesn’t ready simply like a carbon copy of the St. Andrew’s roster. That isn’t to say the Saints still aren’t at the top of the class though as Terrell Brown, Eric DAguanno and Nate Duda hold down the first three spots. Jack OConnor and Graham Lynch were two of the biggest stock-risers in the state, both of whom are now getting noticed at the scholarship level while Lawrence Sabir and Kyle Henseler continue to headline the RIIL ranks. Joe McNamara and Mike McCourt headline those who make their ranking debut.
It’s a similar story up north where Vermont Academy continues to provide the vast majority of the very best prospects in the state. Brown and Jones sit in the top two spots but VA teammate Patrick Fisher was another notable riser in the New England rankings while Nick Brooks also cracks the top five. Ben Shungu is our top ranked player in the state association while Tinga Adiang, Eli DeGrande and Asmin Mostarlic headline the first-timers.