NCAA Basketball: The Top 5 Recruits 2003-2016

Jahlil Okafor, Whitney Young Dolphins Center, Is the No. 1 High School Basketball Player in the Country (2013-14)

Jahlil Okafor, Whitney Young Dolphins Center, Is the No. 1 High School Basketball Player in the Country (2013-14)

Check this out. These are the top five high school basketball recruits of the past 11 years (2003-2013) and for the next three years (2014-2016).

It looks like these rankings do a pretty decent job foretelling the future. For those first 11 years, 46 of the 55 recruits listed below made it to the NBA (eight are still in school). Most either went straight to the pros, like LeBron James in 2003 and Dwight Howard in 2004, or played one or two seasons in college before making the jump.

Some played three years in college – but only David Padgett stayed the whole four years. He’s the only baller listed through 2011 who finished college, but never played in the NBA.

Some of the best young ballers in the pros today were ranked high in high school: James, Howard, Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving, Jrue Holiday and John Wall to name a few.

The predictions are not perfect, though. Take a look at Rose in 2007 who fell behind O.J. Mayo and Michael Beasley, for instance. There are a few other out of order rankings, but you have to acknowledge, it’s hard to really make the call on 16- and 17-year olds.

Or 14- and 15-year olds, for that matter. Already the rankings are out for the best high school players through 2016.

One more note: that whole “straight to the NBA” thing really died out after 2005.

Thanks to my sources, and, where you can see the complete rankings. We’re talking the top 100 high schoolers for each year.


1. LeBron James St. Vincent-St. Mary HS Akron, OH Straight to NBA Miami Heat
2. Luol Deng Blair Academy Blairstown, NJ Duke (1 Year) Chicago Bulls
3. Ndudi Ebi Westbury Christian School Houston, TX Straight to NBA (Minnesota Timberwolves)
4. David Padgett Reno HS Reno, NV Kansas (1 Year) N/A
        Louisville (3 Years)
5. Shannon Brown Proviso East HS Maywood, IL Michigan State (3 Years) Cleveland Cavaliers


1. Dwight Howard Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy Atlanta, GA Straight to NBA Houston Rockets
2. Shaun Livingston Peoria Central Peoria, IL Straight to NBA Brooklyn Nets
3. Al Jefferson Prentiss HS Prentiss, MS Straight to NBA Charlotte Bobcats
4. Josh Smith Oak Hill Academy Mouth of Wilson, VA Straight to NBA Detroit Pistons
5. Rudy Gay Archbishop Spalding Severn, MD Connecticut (2 Years) Toronto Raptors


1. Josh McRoberts Carmel HS Carmel, IN Duke (2 Years) Charlotte Bobcats
2. Gerald Green Gulf Shores Academy Houston, TX Straight to NBA Phoenix Suns
3. Monta Ellis Lanier Senior HS Jackson, MS Straight to NBA Dallas Mavericks
4. Martell Webster Seattle Prep School Seattle, WA Straight to NBA Washington Wizards
5. Louis Williams South Gwinnett HS Snellville, GA Straight to NBA Atlanta Hawks


1. Greg Oden Lawrence North HS Indianapolis, IN Ohio State (1 Year) Miami Heat
2. Kevin Durant Montrose Christian School Rockville, MD Texas (1 Year) Oklahoma City Thunder
3. Brandan Wright Brentwood Academy Brentwood, TN North Carolina (1 Year) Dallas Mavericks
4. Spencer Hawes Seattle Prep School Seattle, WA Washington (1 Year) Philadelphia 76ers
5. Ty Lawson Oak Hill Academy Mouth of Wilson, VA North Carolina (3 Years) Denver Nuggets


1. O.J. Mayo Huntington HS Huntington, WV USC (1 Year) Milwaukee Bucks
2. Michael Beasley Notre Dame Prep Fitchburg, MA Kansas State (1 Year) Miami Heat
3. Kevin Love Lake Oswego HS Lake Oswego, OR UCLA (1 Year) Minnesota Timberwolves
4. Eric Gordon North Central HS Indianapolis, IN Indiana (1 Year) New Orleans Pelicans
5. Derrick Rose Simeon Vocational HS Chicago, IL Memphis (1 Year) Chicago Bulls


1. Brandon Jennings Oak Hill Academy Mouth of Wilson, VA Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne (2 Years) Detroit Pistons
2. Samardo Samuels St. Benedict Prep Newark, NJ Louisville (2 Years) (Cleveland Cavaliers)
3. Byron Mullens Canal Winchester HS Canal Winchester, OH Ohio State (1 Year) Los Angeles Clippers
4. Jrue Holiday Campbell Hall North Hollywood, CA UCLA (1 Year) New Orleans Pelicans
5. Tyreke Evans American Christian School Aston, PA Memphis (1 Year) New Orleans Pelicans


1. Derrick Favors South Atlanta HS Atlanta, GA Georgia Tech (1 year) Utah Jazz
2. John Wall Word of God Christian Academy Raleigh, NC Kentucky (1 Year) Washington Wizards
3. DeMarcus Cousins Le Flore Magnet HS Mobile, AL Kentucky (1 Year) Sacramento Kings
4. John Henson Sickles HS Tampa, FL North Carolina (3 Years) Milwaukee Bucks
5. Avery Bradley Findlay Prep Henderson, NV Texas (1 Year) Boston Celtics


1. Harrison Barnes Ames HS Ames, IA North Carolina (2 Years) Golden State Warriors
2. Kyrie Irving St. Patrick HS Elizabeth, NJ Duke (1 Year) Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Enes Kanter Stoneridge Prep Tarzana, CA Straight to NBA (1 Year Delayed) Utah Jazz
4. Jared Sullinger Northland HS Columbus, OH Ohio State (2 Years) Boston Celtics
5. Josh Selby Lake Clifton-Eastern HS Baltimore, MD Kansas (1 Year) Memphis Grizzlies


1. Anthony Davis Perspectives Charter HS Chicago, IL Kentucky (1 Year) New Orleans Pelicans
2. Andre Drummond St. Thomas More School Oakdale, CT Connecticut (1 Year) Detroit Pistons
3. Austin Rivers Winter Park HS Winter Park, FL Duke (1 Year) New Orleans Pelicans
4. Quincy Miller Westchester Academy High Point, NC Baylor (1 Year) Denver Nuggets
5. James Michael McAdoo Norfolk Christian HS Norfolk, VA North Carolina (3 Years)* In 3rd Year at UNC


1. Nerlens Noel Tilton School Tilton, NH Kentucky (1 Year) Philadelphia 76ers
2. Shabazz Muhammad Bishop Gorman HS Las Vegas, NV UCLA (1 Year) Minnesota Timberwolves
3. Isaiah Austin Grace Preparatory Academy, Inc. Arlington, TX Baylor (2 Years)* In 2nd Year at Baylor
4. Kyle Anderson St. Anthony HS Jersey City, NJ UCLA (2 Years)* In 2nd Year at UCLA
5. Steven Adams Notre Dame Prep Fitchburg, MA Pittsburgh (1 Year) Oklahoma City Thunder


1. Andrew Wiggins Huntington Prep Huntington, WV Kansas (1 Year)* In 1st Year at Kansas
2. Julius Randle Prestonwood Christian Plano, TX Kentucky (1 Year)* In 1st Year at Kentucky
3. Jabari Parker Simeon Vocational HS Chicago, IL Duke (1 Year)* In 1st Year at Duke
4. Aaron Gordon Archbishop Mitty HS San Jose, CA Arizona (1 Year)* In 1st Year at Arizona
5. Andrew Harrison Travis HS Richmond, TX Kentucky (1 Year)* In 1st Year at Kentucky


1. Jahlil Okafor Whitney Young Magnet HS Chicago, IL   Committed to Duke
2. Myles Turner Trinity HS Euless, TX   N/A
3. Emmanuel Mudiay Prime Prep Academy Dallas, TX   Committed to Southern Methodist
4. Tyus Jones Apple Valley Sr. Apple Valley, MN   Committed to Duke
5. Cliff Alexander Curie Metropolitan HS Chicago, IL   Committed to Kansas


1. Malik Newman Callaway Sr HS Jackson, MS   N/A
2. Diamond Stone Dominican HS Milwaukee, WI   N/A
3. Stephen Zimmerman Bishop Gorman HS Las Vegas, NV   N/A
4. Ivan Rabb Bishop O Dowd HS Oakland, CA   N/A
5. Skal Labissiere Evangelical Christian School Cordova, TN   N/A


1. Harry Giles Wesleyan Christian Academy High Point, NC   N/A
2. Jayson Tatum Chaminade College Prep St. Louis, MO   N/A
3. Thon Maker Carlisle School Martinsville, VA   N/A
4. Josh Jackson Voyageur Consortium HS Detroit, MI   N/A
5. Dedric Lawson Hamilton HS Memphis, TN   N/A

* Still playing college ball



Posted on November 15, 2013, in NBA Basketball, NCAA Basketball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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