The Gatorade State Boys Basketball Players of the Year were selected based on athletic production and impact in the 2015-16 fall season. Each winner also demonstrated high academic achievement and exemplary personal character, including volunteerism, sportsmanship and community leadership.
For the complete list of Gatorade State Boys Basketball Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: John Petty
School: Johnson (Huntsville, Ala.)
Weight: 190 pounds
Athletic achievement: He led the Jaguars (29-5) to a second consecutive Class 5A state championship this season. Petty amassed 34 points, seven rebounds, three assists, three blocks and two steals in the 71-50, title-clinching win over Faith Academy, capturing a second straight tournament MVP honor. The Alabama Sports Writers Association’s returning Class 5A Player of the Year, he averaged 19.9 points, 7.3 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.8 blocks per game. He shot 51.0 percent from the field, 30.8 percent from 3-point range and 78.2 percent from the free-throw line.
Academic excellence: Petty has maintained a B average.
Exemplary character: In addition to donating his time as a youth basketball instructor and serving as his team’s prayer leader, he has volunteered locally as part of a can drive for needy families, as a motivational speaker at area elementary schools and on behalf of his church.
“John will go down as the most exciting player in Alabama history after he graduates next year,” said Johnson head coach Jack Doss. “The bigger the moment, the better he plays.”
THE FUTURE: Petty will begin his senior year of high school this fall.