USA TODAY High School Sports has unveiled the ALL-USA Boys Basketball Teams for the 2018-19 season as selected by the USA TODAY Sports staff in consultation with high school coaches and recruiting experts.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Sharife Cooper, McEachern
Name: Mike Thompson
School: McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.)
Super 25 Ranking: 2
Details: Thompson led the Indians to their first-ever state title in boys basketball in one of the toughest states in the country. The Indians won titles at prestigious events like the Bass Pro Tournament of Champions and the City of Palms Classic. Thompson led McEachern to nine victories over Super 25 opponents this season.
Favorite food: Spaghetti. A lot of people would tell you anything! I’ll say any kind of seafood.
Most Cobb County (Ga.) part of me: (Laughs) Probably the fact that I’ve lived here all of my life. I’ve been here 59 years; never left the county.
Best on-court moment this season: Man, that’s hard! It’d have to be winning the state championship because it was my first one! That was special. Winning the Bass Pro was a close second.
Best off-court moment this season: The stretch when we traveled from Springfield, Missouri to Springfield, Massachusetts and back home. That was a fun experience; definitely the most memorable because of all the traveling in a short time.
Favorite quote: “If you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse; there’s no standing in the middle.”
Making sacrifices: I would have to say control. You have to allow players of this caliber to be who they are and let them have a say and make some calls. Sharife (Cooper) has a lot of control on what we run, Isaac (Okoro) makes a lot of calls defensively… Sometimes when we’re in the timeouts I like to ask them what they feel good about and what’s been working. I wouldn’t do that with everyone, but this group is a special group.
Cool talent away from sports: I sing! I actually sang at my wedding and I sing at a bunch of things. I can blow it up now!