The Matchup: No. 8 Wheeler (Marietta) will play Centennial (Roswell) in a AAAAAA first-round playoff game Wednesday.
Wheeler players to watch: Jaylen Brown, a 6-7 senior wing, is a preseason American Family Insurance ALL-USA player and is listed as the No. 2 senior in 247Sports.com’s composite rankings. Senior shooting guard Shembari Phillips, a Tennessee signee, is another of the Wildcats’ top weapons. Bilal Abdur-Rahim, the brother of former NBA player Shareef Abdur-Rahim, made a game-winning layup in the region championship, a 61-59 defeat of Pope (Marietta).
Centennial players to watch: The Knights have only two seniors, but have nine juniors, including their two top players: 6-3 point guard Darrian Brown and 6-5 forward Adam Saeed.
What to expect: Yes, Wheeler (25-2) is the top seed in the AAAAAA tournament, but the Wildcats had to claw to win two games last week, defeating Pope 61-59 and Cherokee (Canton) 51-49. Plus, this is the playoffs, where every game could be your last. The Wildcats last won the state title in 2009. The Knights (16-12) haven’t gone far in recent years in the state tournament, but they made it to the championship game in 2007.