• Jackson McGuire

Recent High School Basketball Transfers

In this article I will talk about some of the recent transfers in high school basketball and why I encourage transferring. Every year national powerhouses reload with talent and this year has been no different. Expect more players to transfer in the next few months.

LaLu - The week started off rough for the La Lumiere Lakers as they lost top 50 senior forward Jeremy Sochan. Next year Sochan is going to play professionally in Germany, but he still plans to play college basketball. This was a huge, huge blow as Sochan was their best returning player, and one of three returning starters.

However, later in the week JJ Starling transferred to La Lumiere over schools such as Brewster Academy, Vermont Academy, and Western Reserve Academy. Starling averaged around 28 points per game last season. As of now I think Starling will start at shooting guard alongside Denham Wojcik in the backcourt.

The Lakers also return Denham Wojcik (three-star rising senior, Harvard commit), Kamari Lands (four-star rising junior), and Treyton Thompson (four-star rising senior, Minnesota commit) so despite the loss of Sochan with the addition of Starling they keep a solid roster.

Brewster - After graduating superstar Terrence Clarke and other key players such as Matt Cross, Marcus Dockery, DeMarr Langford, Jamal Mashburn Jr., and Kadary Richmond the Brewster Academy Bobcats needed to reload.

What did Brewster do? Rebuild and reload of course. First Zaire Wade transferred to Brewster. More recently Micawber Etienne (four-star rising senior), a 6’11 big man, also transferred to Brewster. Etienne has recently been rising up the ranks and is currently ranked 50 by the 247composite ranking and 28 by The Season Ticket. Etienne is a very good rebounder and he has one of the best motors in the class. Lastly, Brewster picked up (four-star rising senior), Carter Whitt. Whitt is an extremely flashy point guard, he has an extremely good handle, and is a really good passer.

Expect the Bobcats to be good once again next year.

Combine Academy - In 2019-2020 Combine Academy beat Oak Hill and finished 26-7. Jeff McInnis and Combine had some high expectations going into 2020-2021. Maxpreps ranked the Goats 14, mostly because of highly ranked guard Jalen Hood-Schifino (four-star rising junior, Pitt Commit). Unfortunately for Combine Academy, Hood-Schifino decided to transfer to Montverde. All hope was not lost because the Goats still returned Robert Dillinghman (rising sophomore), Mekhi Grant (rising sophomore), Kris Robinson (two-star rising senior), and Jacori Owens (two-star rising senior).

Highly thought of Jaylen Curry (rising sophomore) is also transferring to Combine Academy. Curry is a talented guard who was on the Maxpreps Freshman All American third team. Soon after, AJ Smith (rising junior) also transferred to Combine Academy. Combine has a bright future because of Jaylen Curry, Robert Dillingham (rising sophomore), and Mekhi Grant (rising sophomore).

Ribet Academy - Fun fact: Ribet Academy was ranked 6 by the Maxpreps Computer Rankings. They return two of their best players in Tyler Powell (three-star rising senior) and Tre White (four-star rising junior). Now Ribet Academy will add former Crespi guard Mike Price (rising sophomore).

Price had a very impressive freshman season. In one game against Peyton Watson and Long Beach Poly, Price Price scored 30 points. In another game Price scored 20 points and dished out 6 assists. After this game the Los Angeles Daily News said “In moments, Price looked like the best player on the floor. He looked unguardable on the perimeter, driving to the basket and either finishing for himself or making plays for others.” Price will prove to be a major pickup for Ribet Academy.

Nolan Hickman - Nolan Hickman (four-star rising senior) will transfer to Wasatch Academy from Eastside Catholic. This is a major loss for Eastside Catholic as Hickman was their best player. As for Wasatch, they were already a top 15 preseason team. Hickman will combine with Richard Isaacs to make one of the best backcourts in the country. Hickman holds offers from Arizona, Kansas, and UCLA.

Omaha Biliew - Omaha Biliew (five-star rising sophomore) will play next season at Waukee High School. Biliew is a top five player in the 2023 class. On May 1, rumors started to circulate that Biliew would transfer to Hillcrest Prep. People recently found out that Biliew wouldn’t be transferring to powerhouse Hillcrest Prep but instead transfer to Waukee High School. Waukee went to 24-3 last season and finished as one of the top teams in Iowa.

Transferring in High School Basketball - There is a narrative around high school basketball players who transfer: players who transfer aren’t considered loyal. I’m not saying that players should be playing at four different high schools, but transferring is not a bad thing. In most cases I would recommend transferring once. Most players normally start out at a public school or a smaller private school. There are cases where players shouldn’t transfer, however, because they go to a high level public school. For example, Sharife Cooper had no reason to transfer from McEachern because they played a national schedule against good competition. In most cases a player should transfer to play better competition. The competition you play at Oak Hill, Montverde, IMG, etc. is so far superior to a regular public school that it only makes sense to transfer. If I was a highly ranked player I would play two years at my local public school and then transfer to a national powerhouse.



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