The 2013 National High School Basketball Invitational tips off on Thursday afternoon and will run through until Saturday, when a champion is crowned.
This is the fifth annual event and features eight teams that play a national schedule, each with loaded rosters full of elite college prospects.
Findlay Prep is the top seed yet again, as the school is currently 34-0 during the 2012-13 campaign and is riding a 53-game winning streak. The Henderson, Nevada-based program has won the NHSI title on three separate occasions (2009, 2010, 2012).
However, the Wolverines will have some competition from Montverde Academy, which features two McDonald’s All-Americans and nabbed the No. 2 seed. It would also be unwise to count out Deion Sanders’ Prime Prep Academy, the No. 3 seed that is chock-full of young superstars.
Let’s take a look at where you can catch all this exciting high school hoops action, see a full list of participating programs, check out the bracket, highlight some top recruits and much more in our 2013 NHSI preview.
Where: Georgetown Preparatory School’s Hanley Center for Athletic Excellence in Bethesda, Md.
When: Thursday, April 4-Saturday, April 6
Watch: ESPNU (Quarterfinals), ESPN2 (Semifinals), ESPN (Finals)
Live Stream: ESPN3
Which team will win?
Seeds and Teams
1. Findlay Prep (Nev.)
2. Montverde Academy (Fla.)
3. Prime Prep (Tex.)
4. St. Benedict’s Prep (N.J.)
5. La Lumiere (Ind.)
6. Blanche Ely (Fla.)
7. Oak Hill Academy (Va.)
8. Montrose Christian (Md.)
Bracket and Schedule (via NHSIHoops.com)
Kasey Hill, Montverde Academy, Class of 2013
This Florida Gators commit is a top-notch prospect with elite pure point guard skills.
At 6’0”, 170 pounds, Hill may not be the biggest player on the court, but he’s one of the most athletic and agile in the nation.
He’s extremely acrobatic when moving with the ball and blowing by defenders, making it easy for him to contort his way to the rim. Hill is a great passer and excellent teammate, but has to work on his jumper if he’s ever going to get smart opponents to respect him from range.
It will be interesting to see how the opposition elects to guard the Montverde star in this event.
Emmanuel Mudiay, Prime Prep, Class of 2014
This young man from Arlington, Texas is someone you will soon be hearing a lot about.
Mudiay is the top point guard in the class of 2014, according to 247 Sports’ ranking system, and there’s a lot to like about his game.
He’s first and foremost a scorer, able to get to the cup at will and finish strong when he arrives. His jumper is on point and his handle is out of this world, but he does have some areas to improve upon.
Standing at 6’4”, 190 pounds, this kid has the size to play the 2, but would be much better suited as a bigger PG.
If he’s willing to become more of a facilitator until crunch time and keeps his motor running while in that passing mode (an area of struggle so far during his prep career), Mudiay will develop into a legitimate star.
Dakari Johnson, Montverde Academy, Class of 2013
Kentucky landed an incredible center in Johnson. He is a 6’10”, 250-pound stud that is perfectly capable of filling the role of rim protector, but not in the fashion that fans in Lexington are used to seeing.
Johnson isn’t an eye-popping athlete, but he’s a fundamentally sound player—especially on the defensive end. He uses footwork and timing to block shots and guard big men, instead of trying to jump over the top every time an attempt might go up.
For many of the same reasons he’s great on defense, this Brooklyn native is also a promising scorer. He not only knocks down short jumpers, but also goes into the low post to show some raw talent.
We’d like to see him work on that and could possibly see him display some of his post skills in this tournament.