Pre-season Statewide Rankings (10-6)

7 Dec

Number one is getting closer.  

10. Oak Park (Class A)- The Knights received an early Christmas present, as 6’7″ senior forward Rodney Scales has returned after playing football at Neenah High School in Wisconsin just in time to rejoin his team for the start of the season.  Scales is reported to be immediately eligible, meaning the one-two punch of him and 6’7″ junior Kelvon Fuller is back on to terrorize opposing front courts.  In the backcourt, Oak Park has two high-scoring guards in junior Devin Mills and senior Howard McInnis, both just need to see one go through the net before heating up quickly.  Mills will be eligible in January.

9. Wayland Union (Class B)- Wayland fell to eventual Class B state champion Milan in the quarterfinals.  6’7″ senior LJ James is back for his senior season.  As a junior, James averaged 14 point and nine rebounds a game, and will pair with fellow senior Dilon Aten, a 6’1″ point guard and Cornerstone (MI) commit who averaged 18 a year ago, to give Wildcats a dynamic offensive attack.

8. Kalamazoo Central (Class A)- The Maroon Giants won 20 games a year ago, and received the talents of junior 6’5″ guard Devon Daniels via Battle Creek Central over the off-season.  While Devon will handle most of the scoring loading this season, 6’7″  Isaiah Livers should give Central quality minutes in the paint as a rebounder and scorer around the rim.  Junior Orlando Little gets the most out of his 6’4″ frame, and is never short on hustle and grit, and 6’5″ sophomore wing Ontario Burnett will provide perimeter shooting to round out a balanced Maroon Giant offensive attack.

7. Ypsilanti Lincoln (Class A)- Lincoln loses only one senior off last year’s 14-7 team.  The Rail Splitters will be led by junior division one recruits junior Ty Groce and senior Devin Haygood.  Haygood is a 6’8″ forward that excels in crashing the boards and defending the rim, while the 6’7″ Groce will add versatility and potential to become a lockdown perimeter defender.  The Rails also return their leading scorer from a year ago in 5’9″ senior floor general Sherrod Motley-Dismuke (10 points), and standout football prospect Lazon Hicks.  Groce, Haygood, and Hicks all averaged nine points per game last year, while Hicks was the teams’ leading rebounder with six boards per-contest.

6. Milan (Class B)- Milan won Class B a year ago, and return their three leading scorers in seniors Nick Perkins, Latin Davis, and Lance Lewis.  However, the biggest loss of the off-season was head coach Josh Tropea, who accepted the head coaching position at Chelsea.  Chris Pope will succeed Tropea, and aside from Monroe St. Mary in the Huron League, the Big Reds have schedule games against Ypsilanti Lincoln, Adrian Lenawee Christian, Romulus, and U of D Jesuit.

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