We take a look at the “big four” prep schools’ – Oak Hill Academy, Montverde Academy, Huntington Prep and Findlay Prep – offseason moves and examine why those moves will undoubtedly put them in the Super 25 hunt when basketball kicks off later this year.
Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.)
Key transfers: Gary Trent Jr., Justin Roberts, Chris Giles, Reggie Chaney.
Why they’ll be in the hunt: Trent’s addition gives the Pilots arguably the fiercest competitor in the country, regardless of class. Trent is ranked No. 9 overall in the ESPN 100, is No. 1 among shooting guards and has won two gold medals with USA Basketball (U16, U17). Add that in with two strong point guards, Roberts, a DePaul commit, and Giles, the Pilots have one of the strongest backcourts in the country. Chaney will add power and energy in the paint for the Pilots.
Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)
Key transfers: Billy Preston.
Why they’ll be in the hunt: Preston is a 6-foot-10, 230-pound walking matchup problem. He can handle the ball like a guard, use his length to go past wing defenders and finish at the rim with authority. Preston is ranked No. 13 overall in the ESPN 100.
Huntington Prep (Huntington, W.Va.)
Key transfers: Keldon Johnson, Chase Johnson, Chris Smith, Jaemyn Brakefield, Emmaniel Opokoma, Shemar Rathan, Mamoudou Diarra, Keyshawn Bryant.
Why they’ll be in the hunt: Keldon Johnson is ranked No. 12 overall in the ESPN 60 and has a knack for scoring the ball from anywhere on the court and Smith is a wing that does it all. The rest of the Irish’s young cast of newcomers all have the potential to contribute right away, making them a legitimate threat all season.
Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)
Key transfers: Sandro Mamukelashvili, Rechon Black, Andrew Nembhard, Jake Betlow, Grant Shephard.
Why they’ll be in the hunt: Chances are you haven’t heard of Mamukelashvili, but you will. The 6-foot-9 wing was born in the U.S. but raised in the Republic of Georgia; his 7-foot wingspan and diverse skill-set have already got NBA general managers drooling. Also, Black, a point guard who is committed to North Carolina, is ranked No. 26 overall in the ESPN 60 and will add production in the backcourt.
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