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HS Circuit Top 25: Unranked Programs Watch List

By Samad Hines, 11/11/20, 4:45PM EST

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Lake Norman Christian (NC) 
Last Season Record: 31-2
Major buzz has come about this newly built Lake Norman Christian basketball squad after they acquired highly rated 2023 G Mikey Williams to their roster for the 2020-2021 high school season. The Storm had themselves a nice season last year after finishing with a 31-2 overall record. Other prospects like 2023 PG Trey Green and 2022 F Joyful Hawkins are also newcomers to the roster. The Storm return key guys like Army commit 2021 F Allen A.J. Allenspach, 2021 F Jonathan Kurtas, and 2021 PG Clay Robinson. They will arguably have the toughest schedule in America for the 2020-2021 high school season as they are expected to play in multiple events against some of the nation's top tier programs. Lake Norman Christian showed the nation a glimpse of this year's squad a couple weeks ago out in Phoenix, Arizona at the Border League in the Top Flight Invite only division. The Storm will have their chances to enter the national top-25 as the season goes along as they are expected to play in major events like the Holiday Hoopsgiving, Battle at the Rock, Beach Ball Classic, Spalding Hoophall Classic, and more. 

Archbishop Moeller (OH)
Last Season Record: 25-1

The Fighting Crusaders of Archbishop Moeller have created themselves a dynasty over the last few seasons, winning two straight OHSAA Division 1 state championships in 2018 and 2019. The COVID-19 outbreak ripped them from possibly winning their third straight state championship. Coming into the 2020-2021 high school season, they hold an overall record of 110-5 since the 2016-2017 high school season. Prospects like Indiana commit 2021 C Logan Duncomb, Richmond commit 2021 SG Aiden Noyes, and Furman commit 2021 SG Alex Williams headlines this season's roster for Moeller. The Crusaders are certainly the favorites to capture the OHSAA Division 1 state title coming into the season and they are also expected to appear in the loaded Beach Ball Classic in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in December. Archbishop Moeller will also have matchups against St. Vincent-St. Mary (OH) and Lawrence North (IN) this season. There is where they will have a chance to enter and possibly climb up in our top-25 national rankings. 

Duncanville (TX)
Last Season Record: 29-5

Duncanville High School, located right outside of Dallas, has been one of the most consistent football and basketball programs around the country. The Panthers are coming into the 2020-2021 high school season as one of the top public schools in the country. Duncanville sits right outside our top-25 national rankings and they will certainly have a chance to enter and climb the rankings with their tough schedule. The Panthers were just a game away from possibly capturing their second straight UIL Class 6A state championship before the coronavirus outbreak last season. They have a very deep and talented roster coming into the season headlined by highly rated 2023 F Ron Holland and 2023 F Cameron Barnes. Duncanville will be playing against some of the top tier programs in the state of Texas that includes iSchool Lewisville (TX), St. Mark's (TX), Legacy SSS (TX), Wagner (TX), and more while also hosting one of the nation's top ranked programs Ypsi Prep Academy (MI) at the American Airlines Arena as part of the Thanksgiving Hoopfest Showcase. 

Winston-Salem Christian (NC)
Last Season Record: 34-7

Winston-Salem Christian should definitely make a name for themselves nationally this season with their new head coach Antonio Lowe. Lowe and his staff will have their 2020-2021 season squad playing one of the toughest schedules in the country and one of the toughest in the state of North Carolina. The Lions have plans to appear in major national events like the Battle at the Rock, Bojangles Bash, Beach Ball Classic, KD MLK Showcase, and more. Plenty of opportunities for them to gain quality wins and make their way into our top-25 national rankings.  They will also take a trip to powerhouse Oak Hill Academy later this season for a highly anticipated matchup. Winston-Salem Christian's roster this season will be headline by 2021 F Daniel Nixon but the overall talent and size on the roster will give other programs fits. The Lions are arguably the best team coming out of North Carolina but only time will tell as they are expected to face Combine Academy (NC), Liberty Heights (NC), and other in state programs. 

Milton (GA)
Last Season Record: 26-5
The Eagles found themselves appearing in last season's GHSA Class 7A final four and finishing with an overall 26-5 record. They come into the 2020-2021 high school season as arguably the number one team in the state of Georgia. They return their starting backcourt of 2022 PG Bruce Thornton and 2023 G Kanaan Carlyle while adding newcomers like Campbell commit 2021 PG Broc Bidwell and 2022 F Kendall Campbell. After being mentioned in our top-25 national rankings during the spring and summer, the Eagles did not make an appearance in our top-25 national preseason rankings but they will have a chance to re-enter as the season goes along. Milton is expected to play a competitive schedule this season, making appearances in the Holiday Hoopsgiving, Beach Ball Classic, and KD MLK Classic. They were also scheduled to appear in the famous and annual City of Palms Classic before the cancellation of the tournament. The Eagles will also have major matchups this season against Grayson, Lake Norman Christian (NC), Wheeler, DeMatha Catholic (MD), and more. 

Roselle Catholic (NJ) 
Last Season Record: 22-7

The Lions finished their 2019-2020 high school season with a 22-7 overall record while capturing the NJSIAA North Jersey Non-Public B state championship. The coronavirus outbreak delayed them from possibly capturing the New Jersey TOC state title, which they have captured recently in the past. Roselle Catholic did not appear in our national top-25 rankings at all over the last few months but they have reloaded their roster for this season and could play another national schedule. Highly rated prospects 2023 SG Simeon Wilcher and 2022 G Corey Floyd Jr. headline their season roster and return from last season's squad. Newcomers like 2023 F Aaron Bradshaw, 2021 F Derrick Beuno, 2021 G Amare Marshall, 2022 SG Jamarques Lawrence, and 2021 F Kunga Tsering will help carry the load for the Lions this season as well. The state of New Jersey has delayed scheduling for top tier programs like Roselle Catholic due to the COVID-19 outbreak but the Lions are expecting to play a difficult competitive schedule.

Millard North (NE)
Last Season Record: 24-5

One of the top programs coming out of the Midwest Region this season should be Millard North High School, which is located in Omaha, Nebraska. The Mustangs finished their 2019-2020 high school season with a 24-5 overall record and appearing in the NSAA Class A state championship game where they only lost by two points. Millard North will return almost half of their roster headlined by highly rated 2021 SG Hunter Salis. Their full schedule has yet to be finalized but they are expected to play some of the top programs in the state of Nebraska, which includes defending NSAA Class A state champions Bellevue West (NE), and will have a matchup with powerhouse Oak Hill Academy (VA) in the Heartland Hoops Classic in February in Grand Island, Nebraska. The Mustangs are expected to add another top tier game to their schedule as they were scheduled to play in the Highland Shootout before the cancellation. 

iSchool Lewisville (TX)
Last Season Record: 15-11

iSchool Lewisville will have one of the toughest schedules in the country coming into the 2020-2021 high school season and will have major opportunities to enter our top-25 national rankings for sure. The Cougars have added one of the nations top prospects to their roster, 2022 SG Keyonte George, for the 2020-2021 high school season. Key guys like 2022 PG Cruz Davis, 2021 F Jaxon Lloyd, and others return to the Cougars roster this season. They are playing in multiple national events this season that include the Iverson Classic, City of Lakes Classic, Beach Ball Classic, Flyin to the Hoop, and others. The Cougars also have monster games against Duncanville (TX), Waxahachie (TX), Hillcrest Prep (AZ), St. Mark's (TX), St. Louis Christian (MO), and others this season. 

Archbishop Stepinac (NY) 
Last Season Record: 18-9 

Archbishop Stepinac will be coming into the 2020-2021 high school season as one of the top programs in the state of New York. They lose their top scorer from a year ago, R.J. Davis (North Carolina), but will return key prospects like Duke commit 2021 F A.J. Griffin and Boston commit 2021 F Malcolm Chimezie to the roster. The Crusaders finished 18-9 overall last season while capturing the 2019-2020 CHSAA Class AA state title. Their postseason was cut short due to the COVID-19 outbreak as they were on course of possibly capturing the CHSAA Intersectional Tournament championship. Archbishop Stepinac is expected to begin practicing for their season later this month as the state of New York is still under major watch for any COVID-19 outbreaks. With that being said, the Crusaders schedule has yet to be finalized but I am certain they will play another competitive schedule for the 2020-2021 high school season. 

Calvary Christian (FL)
Last Season Record: 21-8 

Calvary Christian has became one of the most slept on programs coming out of the state of Florida, especially coming into the 2020-2021 high school season. The Eagles captured the Arizona Division championship out in Phoenix, Arizona a few weeks ago as part of the loaded Border League tournament. They have returned key prospects like 2022 F Gregg Glenn, 2023 SG Carl Cherenfant, and 2021 SG Dylan Canonville to their roster and have added talented newcomers like 2023 PG Marvel Allen and 2022 F Taylor Hendricks to their 2020-2021 high school season roster. Calvary Christian will be playing a sturdy difficult schedule this season that includes matchups against Florida powerhouses Montverde Academy (FL) and IMG Academy (FL). They will also be facing West Oaks Academy (FL) and are expected to appear in the loaded Beach Ball Classic in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in late December. The Eagles will have multiple opportunities to grab a couple quality wins and make their name known nationally during the 2020-2021 high school season. 

Others:
St. Vincent-St. Mary (OH)
John Marshall (VA)
Pace Academy (GA)
Legacy SSS (TX)
St. Louis Christian (MO)
Gonzaga (DC)
Oak Ridge (FL)
Wheeler (GA)
Bergen Catholic (NJ)
Gill St. Bernard's (NJ)
Grayson (GA)
Knoxville Catholic (TN)
Greensboro Day (NC)
Dorman (SC)
Rutgers Prep (NJ)
Teays Valley Christian (WV)
Pebblebrook (GA)
Richardson (TX)

 

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