NEW FAB 50: State Champions CROWNED!
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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State champions have been crowned in all 50 states and it created some movement in the second-to-last 2016-17 edition of the FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com. Three undefeated teams went down in state championship games in Ohio, Michigan and Minnesota, respectively, and there are three newcomers, including state champions from two of those states, plus Indiana. There are only seven high school basketball games left this season taking place at Dick’s Nationals in New York, March 30-April 1.
By Ronnie Flores
All the state titles around the country have been decided and the results around the country proved it’s not easy to complete a undefeated state championship season. Three teams went down in flames in their respective state championship game after entering the contest with a high spot in the FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com and without a loss.
The highest ranked team to lose was previous No. 9 Archbishop Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio), which fell to talented Jackson (Massillion, Ohio), 39-38, in the Ohio Division I state title game before 11,750 fans at Value City Arena. Butler-bound Kyle Young of Jackson (our highest rated Ohio team in the preseason FAB 50 at No. 43) made his first of two free throws with 3.6 seconds left to account for the final points of the game, as Moeller’s last-second heave was off the mark. Jackson was this week’s highest rated newcomer at No. 33, while Moeller fell out of the top 10 to No. 37 with its lone loss.
In Minnesota, Apple Valley (Apple Valley, Minn.) ended Champlin Park’s dream of an unbeaten championship season for the second time in three years with a 60-54 victory at Target Center. Tre Jones, the younger brother of Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Tyus Jones, led Apple Valley with 24 points, 18 rebounds and five assists, as the Eagles won their third Class 4A crown in five years.
Apple Valley entered this week’s FAB 50 at No. 36, while Champlin Park (which split games with the Eagles this season) fell 23 spots to No. 39. In 2014-15, Champlin Park also entered the MSHSL Class 4A championship game 31-0 and lost to Apple Valley 64-61, as Apple Valley finished No. 40 in the final FAB 50 that season. Tyus Jones led Apple Valley to a state title in 2012-13 during his junior season.
Grand Rapids Christian (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was up to No. 18 in last week’s FAB 50, but it came crashing down with a 75-69 loss to No. 35 Clarkston (Clarkston, Mich.) in the Class A state title game at the Breslin Center. Foster Loyer led longtime Clarkston coach Dan Fife to his first state title by scoring 29 points. Clarkston (which began the season No. 33 in the FAB 50) shot up to No. 19 this week, while the Eagles fell to one spot behind Champlin Park at No. 40.
The highest ranked team to win a state title last week was two-loss and No. 7 Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.), which defeated No. 36 Woodcreek (Roseville, Calif.) in the CIF Open Division state title game, 74-67, behind 26 points from Oregon St.-bound Ethan Thompson. The Knights lost to an unranked club to begin the season, but in the post-season defeated No. 12 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) twice, No. 18 Chino Hills (Chino Hills, Calif.) and No. 21 Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.) in addition to the Timberwolves.
Bishop Montgomery did not lose to a team from Southern California and its only other loss was to No. 5 Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.), one of seven FAB 50 ranked teams and one bubble club still playing this season at Dick’s Nationals, set for March 30-April 1 at Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.).
Updated FAB 50 National Team Rankings
Powered by Ballislife.com
(Fifteenth poll of 2016-17 regular season; Through games played on Sunday, March 25; Previous ranking in parentheses; *Indicates forfeit wins, forfeit losses not included; **Indicates forfeits and defaults not included; ***Indicates season not complete)
|No.||Prev.||High School (City)||Record|
|1||1||Nathan Hale (Seattle, Wash.)||29-0|
|2||2||La Lumiere (LaPorte, Ind.)||25-1***|
|3||3||Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.)||33-3|
|4||4||Imhotep Charter (Philadelphia, Pa.)||31-1*|
|5||5||Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)||24-4***|
|6||6||IMG Academy (Brandenton, Fla.)||26-1***|
|7||7||Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.)||31-2|
|8||8||Jonesboro (Jonesboro, Ark.)||32-0|
|9||10||Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.)||29-4|
|10||11||Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.)||32-3***|
|11||12||Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)||38-4***|
|12||13||Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)||33-3|
|13||14||Shadow Mountain (Phoenix, Ariz.)||27-0***|
|14||15||Brentwood Academy (Nashville, Tenn.)||30-2|
|15||17||Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)||32-5|
|16||20||Tift County (Tifton, Ga.)||29-2|
|17||21||Cypress Falls (Houston, Texas)||35-3|
|18||19||Chino Hills (Chino Hills, Calif.)||30-3|
|19||35||Clarkston (Clarkston, Mich.)||27-1|
|20||22||Greensboro Day (Greensboro, N.C.)||33-3***|
|21||38||Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.)||27-3|
|22||24||Jefferson (Portland, Ore.)||27-1|
|23||23||Skyline (Dallas, Texas)||34-2|
|24||28||Webster Groves (Webster Groves, Mo.)||29-2|
|25||25||Norcross (Norcross, Ga.)||26-6|
|26||26||Greenforest Christian Academy (Decatur, Ga.)||27-5|
|27||27||Mae Jemison (Huntsville, Ala.)||33-4|
|28||34||Trinity Episcopal (Richmond, Va.)||35-1|
|29||33||Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.)||29-3|
|30||30||The Burlington School (Burlington, N.C.)||31-0|
|31||31||West Oaks Academy (Orlando, Fla.)||18-3|
|32||32||Blue Ridge (St. George, Va.)||30-3|
|33||NR||Jackson (Massillion, Ohio)||28-2|
|34||45||Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.)||30-3*|
|35||40||Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.)||27-3|
|36||NR||Apple Valley (Apple Valley, Minn.)||30-2|
|37||9||Archbishop Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio)||28-1|
|38||29||Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.)||30-2|
|39||16||Champlin Park (Champlin, Minn.)||31-1|
|40||18||Grand Rapids Christian (Grand Rapids, Mich.)||27-1|
|41||39||Wesleyan Christian Academy (High Point, N.C.)||28-5|
|42||41||Linden (Linden, N.J.)||26-5|
|43||42||McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.)||29-1|
|44||43||Edmond North (Edmond, Okla.)||27-2|
|45||NR||Ben Davis (Indianapolis, Ind.)||24-5|
|46||49||Basha (Chandler, Ariz.)||30-1|
|47||36||Woodcreek (Roseville, Calif.)||32-3|
|48||44||Whitney Young (Chicago, Ill.)||27-6*|
|49||48||Meridian (Meridian, Miss.)||30-2|
|50||50||Rindge & Latin (Cambridge, Mass.)||24-0|
Dropped Out: Previous No. 37 Long Island Lutheran (Glen Head, N.Y.), No. 46 North Side (Fort Wayne, Ind.), No. 47 Simeon (Chicago, Ill.).
Bubble Teams: Bingham (South Jordan, Utah) 24-3; Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, Nev.) 22-9; Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.) 22-3; Blue Valley Northwest (Overland Park, Kan.) 21-3; Bolingbrook (Bolingbrook, Ill.) 30-2; Bowling Green (Bowling Green, Ky.) 36-2; Butler (Matthews, N.C.) 30-1; Clark (Las Vegas, Nev.) 27-5; Cooper (Burlington, Ky.) 34-5; Corona Del Sol (Tempe, Ariz.) 26-4; DeMatha Catholic (Hyattsville, Md.) 25-10; Edwardsville (Edwardsville, Ill.) 30-2; Evanston (Evanston, Ill.) 28-4; Fern Creek (Louisville, Ky.) 35-3; First Love Christian Academy (Washington, Pa.) 24-3; Garfield (Seattle, Wash.) 21-6; Hamilton Heights Christian Academy (Chattanooga, Tenn.) 31-7; Keller (Keller, Texas) 33-3; Kentwood (Covington, Wash.) 27-3; Klein Forest (Houston, Texas) 34-1; L.C. Bird (Chesterfield, Va.) 27-1; Lone Peak (Highland, Utah) 23-5; Long Island Lutheran (Glen Head, N.Y.) 23-4; Mansfield Timberview (Arlington, Texas) 32-7; Morgan Park (Chicago, Ill.) 26-6; Mt. St. Joseph (Baltimore, Md.) 35-4; Muskegon (Muskegon, Mich.) 23-1; Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia, Pa.) 24-7; Newton (Covington, Ga.) 28-2; North (Oshkosh, Wis.) 25-1; North Side (Fort Wayne, Ind.) 27-3; Oak Ridge (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) 31-3; Pebblebrook (Mableton, Ga.) 21-8; Pickerington Central (Pickerington, Ohio) 26-3; Rock Creek Christian (Upper Marlboro, Md.) 28-4; Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.) 18-11; Scotlandville (Baton Rouge, La.) 31-4; Sheldon (Sacramento, Calif.) 30-4; Simeon (Chicago, Ill.) 30-4; Southwest Guilford (High Point, N.C.) 28-3; St. Augustine (San Diego, Calif.) 28-5; Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kan.) 23-7; Union (Tulsa, Okla.) 28-1; Wagner (San Antonio, Texas) 36-3; Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasant, Utah) 24-4***; Wesley Christian (Allen, Ky.) 33-9; West (Lee’s Summit, Mo.) 25-3; Westlake (Atlanta, Ga.) 18-11; Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.) 21-9; Wise (Upper Marlboro, Md.) 21-1.
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.