Its Tournament Time! NEW FAB 50 Rankings!
National Grassroots Editor
Ronnie has evaluated basketball talent for 20 years and has over 15 years of experience in publishing, editing and managing high school sports websites for companies such as Student Sports, ESPN and Ballislife. Ronnie compiles the FAB 50 National Team Rankings while serving as an account manager and consultant for grassroots event run by Ballislife and other companies, in addition to serving as a color commentator on high school broadcasts.
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A majority of the nation’s top teams will participate in tournaments over the next three weeks that will shake up the national picture. Look for the next FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com on January 2, 2017. There are four newcomers to this week’s rankings, including No. 47 Corona Del Sol (Tempe, Ariz.), the most impressive team at Hoophall West in Scottsdale, Ariz.
By Ronnie Flores
There isn’t too much movement in the latest FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com, but there surely will in the next set of rankings after the results of the major holiday tournaments come in.
For this set of rankings, we stay with theme of not overly punishing elite teams that play a difficult schedule and suffer a loss to another FAB 50-ranked team. A clear example is previous No. 6 Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.), which fell to new No. 7 DeMatha Catholic (Hyattsville, Md.) 66-58 at the National High School Hoops Festival at DeMatha the day after falling 73-67 to new No. 28 Westlake (Atlanta) on the road. The Wildcats drop 27 spots to No. 33, as they receive rankings credit for an earlier 53-42 victory over No. 21 Greenforest Christian Academy (Decatur, Ga.), which owns a win over Westlake.
Greenforest’s other loss is to Norcross (Norcross, Ga.), which secured its second big win of the season over the weekend at the Memphis vs. Atlanta Roundball Classic at Duluth (Ga.). The Blue Devils downed previous No. 29 Cordova (Cordova, Tenn.), 70-55, and are now up to 13 in the FAB 50 after beginning No. 41 in the preseason. Similar to Wheeler, Cordova isn’t penalized too much and only drops one spot.
One of the teams that actually defeated Wheeler is one of the four to drop out, as previous No. 27 Vashon (St. Louis, Mo) fell to Blue Valley Northwest (Overland Park, Kan.), 60-56, at the Springfield Shootout. The Huskies are the final team to break in this week to replace Vashon and will get tested right away versus No. 49 Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.) on December 13. The key Class 6A game between two Eastern Kansas District clubs will take place at Bishop Miege.
The most impressive team at the Hoophall West over the weekend in Arizona was new No. 47 Corona Del Sol (Tempe, Ariz.). The Aztecs dispatched Moreau Catholic (Hayward, Calif.) 99-67 on Friday and defeated Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) in comeback fashion, 84-74, on Saturday. The perimeter-oriented Aztecs were led by their stellar backcourt of Vanderbilt-bound Saben Lee (6-3) and Arizona-bound Alex Barcello (6-2). The duo combined for 63 points in the victory over Christ the King (which just missed the preseason FAB 50), as Barcello had 32 points, four rebounds and five assists while the athletic Lee had 31 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. Against Moreau, Barcello had 28 points eight rebounds, three assists and two steals while Lee just missed a triple-double with 12 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists. The Aztecs will head to the Iolani Tournament in Hawaii on December 16 where it could face FAB 50 No. 1 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) in the semifinals.
While Corona Del Sol was the most impressive team in the Valley of the Sun, the best team was the one right on the heels of Oak Hill — No. 2 La Lumiere (La Porte, Ind.). The Lakers played on Saturday and improved to 9-0 with an easy 91-44 victory over Westbury Christian (Houston, Texas) in a game relatively close in the first half. Up next for La Lumiere is a nationally-televised matchup on December 15 with No. 48 New Albany (New Albany, Ind.), which saw its 27-game winning streak snapped in a 84-60 loss to North Central (Indianapolis, Ind.). Kris Wilkes tallied 32 points for the Panthers, who break into the FAB 50 at No. 45 and are major Indiana Class 4A state title contenders.
The La Lumiere-New Albany game (7 pm ET) is part of a ESPN doubleheader at New Castle (Ind.) which will include No. 1 Oak Hill versus No. 5 Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.) in a game (9 pm ET) that will have huge FAB 50 rankings ramifications the rest of the season. Oak Hill’s Kansas-bound Billy Preston will have to slow down Marvin Bagley III, who has been quite impressive so far for Sierra Canyon and is a legitimate Mr. Basketball USA candidate despite being a junior.
Defending FAB 50 national champion Chino Hills also played at Hoophall West and saw its winning streak reach 41 games with an easy 84-70 win over Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, Nev.). The Huskies cracked the FAB 50 Top 10 this week and are the top seeded team in the upcoming Tarkanian Classic, which begins bracket play on December 16. The No. 2 seed is No. 18 Mater Dei, which defeated St. Mary’s (Phoenix, Ariz.) 79-43 at Hoophall West.
There will be seven FAB 50-ranked teams participating in the traditional bracket at The City of Palms Tournament in Ft. Myers, Fla., December 16-21. They are: No. 3 Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.), No. 4 Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.), No. 6 Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia, Pa.), No. 8 IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), No. 13 Norcross, No. 17 Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.), and No. 42 Pebblebrook (Mableton, Ga.).
Because these major tournaments overlap two weeks and because the major post-Christmas tournaments begin on a Monday, our next FAB 50 installment will be the first Monday of calendar year 2017.
Updated FAB 50 National Team Rankings
Powered by Ballislife.com
(Second poll of the 2016-17 regular season; Through games played on Sunday, December 11; Last week’s ranking in parentheses; *Indicates forfeit wins, forfeit losses not included; **Indicates forfeits and defaults not included)
|No.||Prev.||High School (City)||Record|
|1||1||Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)||12-0|
|2||2||La Lumiere (LaPorte, Ind.)||9-0|
|3||3||Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.)||0-0|
|4||4||Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)||8-0|
|5||5||Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.)||5-0|
|6||7||Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia, Pa.)||1-0|
|7||8||DeMatha Catholic (Hyattsville, Md.)||3-0|
|8||9||IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)||10-0|
|9||10||Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.)||4-1|
|10||11||Chino Hills (Chino Hills, Calif.)||6-0|
|11||12||Greensboro Day (Greensboro, N.C.)||13-0|
|12||14||Curie (Chicago, Ill.)||7-0|
|13||16||Norcross (Norcross, Ga.)||8-0|
|14||15||Imhotep Charter (Philadelphia, Pa.)||1-0|
|15||13||Hamilton Heights Christian Academy (Chattanooga, Tenn.)||7-2|
|16||18||West Oaks Academy (Orlando, Fla.)||7-1|
|17||17||Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.)||5-1|
|18||20||Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)||7-0|
|19||21||Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.)||13-0|
|20||23||Simeon (Chicago, Ill.)||3-0|
|21||19||Greenforest Christian Academy (Decatur, Ga.)||6-2|
|22||26||Garfield (Seattle, Wash.)||3-0|
|23||24||Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)||4-1|
|24||33||Nathan Hale (Seattle, Wash.)||3-0|
|25||25||St. Anthony (Jersey City, N.J.)||0-0|
|26||31||Wagner (San Antonio, Texas)||13-0|
|27||34||Mt. St. Joseph (Baltimore, Md.)||8-0|
|28||32||Westlake (Atlanta, Ga.)||6-1|
|29||30||Long Island Lutheran (Glen Head, N.Y.)||3-0|
|30||29||Cordova (Cordova, Tenn.)||8-1|
|31||36||Clarkston (Clarkston, Mich.)||2-0|
|32||37||Paul VI (Fairfax, Va.)||4-0|
|33||6||Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.)||4-3|
|34||35||St. Benedict’s (Newark, N.J.)||4-1|
|35||22||Rainier Beach (Seattle, Wash.)||2-1|
|36||38||Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.)||0-0|
|37||39||Jefferson (Portland, Ore.)||2-0|
|38||42||Houston Math, Science & Tech (Houston, Texas)||13-0|
|39||43||Jackson (Massillion, Ohio)||1-0|
|40||44||Jonesboro (Jonesboro, Ark.)||5-0|
|41||NR||Oldsmar Christian (Oldsmar, Fla.)||7-0|
|42||40||Pebblebrook (Mableton, Ga.)||6-3|
|43||41||Wesleyan Christian Academy (High Point, N.C.)||8-1|
|44||45||Meridian (Meridian, Miss.)||10-0|
|45||NR||North Central (Indianapolis, Ind.)||4-0|
|46||47||The Burlington School (Burlington, N.C.)||10-0|
|47||NR||Corona Del Sol (Tempe, Ariz.)||6-0|
|48||28||New Albany (New Albany, Ind.)||3-1|
|49||50||Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.)||1-0|
|50||NR||Blue Valley Northwest (Overland Park, Kan.)||2-0|
Dropped Out: Previous No. 27 Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.), No. 46 Webster Groves (Webster Groves, Mo.), No. 48 Trinity (Louisville, Ky.), No. 49 Providence Day (Charlotte, N.C.).
Bubble Teams: Althoff Catholic (Belleville, Ill.) 5-2; Apple Valley (Apple Valley, Minn.) 2-1; Bingham (South Jordan, Utah) 5-1; Bishop O’Connell (Arlington, Va.) 4-1; Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland, Calif.) 1-0; Blackman (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) 5-2; Blanche Ely (Pompano Beach, Fla.) 9-1; Bowling Green (Bowling Green, Ky.) 4-0; Brandon (Brandon, Miss.) 10-0; Brentwood Academy (Nashville, Tenn.) 5-0; Cardinal Hayes (Bronx, N.Y.) 5-0; Centennial (Las Vegas, Nev.) 6-1; Champlin Park (Champlin, Minn.) 2-0; Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) 2-1; Clark (Las Vegas, Nev.) 5-0; Corona Del Sol (Tempe, Ariz.) 6-0; Dakota (Macomb, Mich.) 1-0; Denver East (Denver, Col.) 7-0; Desert Vista (Phoenix, Ariz.) 4-1; Edmond North (Edmond, Okla.) 5-0; El Dorado (El Dorado, Ark.) 7-0; Eleanor Roosevelt (Greenbelt, Md.) 0-1; Fairfax (Los Angeles, Calif.) 5-0; Fern Creek (Louisville, Ky.) 5-0; First Love Christian Academy (Washington, Pa.) 3-1; Forest Hill (Jackson, Miss.) 7-0; Grand Rapids Christian (Grand Rapids, Mich.) 1-0; Hudson Catholic (Jersey City, N.J.) 0-0; Jonesboro (Jonesboro, Ga.) 6-1; Iowa City West (Iowa City, Iowa) 3-0; Klein Forest (Houston, Texas) 13-0; Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.) 4-0; Mae Jemison (Huntsville, Ala.) 12-2; Maple Grove (Maple Grove, Minn.) 2-0; Minneapolis North (Minneapolis, Minn.) 3-1; Morgan Park (Chicago, Ill.) 4-0; Natchitoches Central (Natchitoches, La.) 9-0; Norcom (Portsmouth, Va.) 5-0; North Crowley (Ft. Worth, Texas) 11-2; Oak Ridge (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) 8-0; Omaha South (Omaha, Neb.) 4-0; Parkview (Little Rock, Ark.) 7-1; Potomac (Dumfries, Va.) 4-0; Santa Monica (Santa Monica, Calif.) 7-1; Scotlandville (Baton Rouge, La.) 6-0; Shadow Mountain (Phoenix, Ariz.) 7-0; St. James School (Hagerstown, Md.) 1-0; Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kan.) 8-2; Trotwood-Madison (Trotwood, Ohio) 1-0; University Lab (Baton Rouge, La.) 10-0; University of Detroit Jesuit (Detroit, Mich.) 1-0; Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.) 4-1; Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasant, Utah) 9-2; Wayne (Huber Heights, Ohio) 2-0; Wesley Christian (Allen, Ky.) 13-4; West Linn (West Linn, Ore.) 0-0; Westminster Academy (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) 10-0; Woodcreek (Roseville, Calif.) 7-0.
Note: The FAB 50 powered by Ballislife.com is a continuation of the National Sports News Service ratings that began in 1952. These were the first national high school rankings and the late Art Johlfs of Minnesota compiled them. They were compiled for many years by the late Barry Sollenberger of Phoenix, who merged them into the FAB 50 17 years ago.