Enough early season results have trickled in to update our preseason national rankings. The first edition of the 2017-18 FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com shows four new teams, including two from California. Fast-risers include high-scoring Shadow Mountain of Arizona, Greensboro Day of North Carolina, University School of Florida and Guyer of Texas.
By Ronnie Flores
Although not all states have played 2017-18 regular season games, there are enough big tournament and showcase results to update the FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com.
A vast majority of the the top-ranked teams remain unbeaten or have only lost to another FAB 50-ranked team. Still, there have been a couple of upsets and four teams were able to break through in the fist rankings update of the 2017-18 season.
Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kan.) knocked off defending Dick’s Nationals champion La Lumiere (La Porte, Ind.) 56-47 at the Chicago Elite Classic and because the Lakers still grade out as an elite team, Luke Barnwell’s club is the highest-rated newcomer this week at No. 28. La Lumiere drops 19 spots and checks in at No. 29. We tried not to maneuver too many teams that have yet to play a game and didn’t drop any, as our focus is on results and not so much player personnel for teams that have no results.
Another team making a big splash in is the Patriots of John Carroll (Bel Air, Md.), which was featured on the Ballislife HS Basketball Weekly Showcase on November 27 and promptly defeated Baltimore Catholic League rival and preseason No. 28 Mt. St. Joseph Baltimore, 74-53 (WATCH FULL REPLAY). Leading the charge was Rutgers recruit Montez Mathis with a spectacular 30-point, 13-rebound, 6-assist, 6-steal performance. The Patriots did lose a subsequent game, a controversial 78-73 overtime setback to St. Frances Academy (Baltimore, Md.), but have done enough to break into the rankings at No. 35 while Mt. St. Joseph checks in at No. 37.
Both Sunrise Christian Academy and John Carroll were seriously considered for the preseason FAB 50 and appeared in our preseason regional Top 20 rankings. The only newcomer who wasn’t on the national radar and was more of a state-ranked club is new No. 48 Rancho Christian (Temecula, Calif.). The Eagles opened their season with a 84-63 win over Capital Christian (Sacramento, Calif.) at the NorCal Tip-Off Classic November 25 and came back to win the competitive BattleZone Tournament at Centennial (Corona, Calif.). Not only did Ray Barefield’s club defeat the host club, it also downed regionally-ranked Chino Hills (Calif.) a day after that club looked quite impressive in a key win.
Rancho Christian, which is led by brothers Isaiah and Evan Mobley, was more impressive in its win over Capital Christian than Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland, Calif.) was in its December 2 win over that same club. That is why the Eagles hop in front of Bishop O’Dowd, which was strongly considered for the preseason FAB 50, as the Dragons defeated Capital Christian 80-73 in a game of runs. O’Dowd won the marquee game at the NorCal Tip-Off Classic with a 58-56 triumph over regionally-ranked Fairfax (Los Angeles). Coach Lou Richie’s club next heads to the Iolani Classic in Hawaii where it could meet the likes of No. 18 Greensboro Day (Greensboro, N.C.) and/or No. 30 Jefferson (Portland, Ore.) on its side of the bracket.
Injuries Play Role In FAB 50
John Caroll was one of the newcomers because of its key win over Mt. St. Joseph, but also because it appears it lost to St. Frances on a disputed ending. Replays show an offensive rebound put back by Nigel Haughton going through the buzzer before the game clock hit zero that would have given the Patriots a 66-64 win, but the basket was waived off by the referees. Another reason to like the results of John Zito’s club so far is it has played without the services of Kentucky-bound point guard Immanuel Quickley, who is battling a bout of mononucleosis.
Sunrise Christian Academy is playing without Loyola-Chicago signee Isaiah Bujdoso and not having its point guard played a role in a 59-55 loss to Victory Rock Prep (Sarasota, Fla.) at the Marshall County Hoopfest in Kentucky. Unbeaten University School (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) owns a victory over Victory Rock Prep and the results involving those three teams helped the Sharks move up five spots in this week’s FAB 50 to No. 16.
Other top-ranked players that have missed time with various injuries or other off-court happenings include Zion Williamson of Spartanburg Day School (Spartanburg, S.C.), Courtney Ramey of No. 8 Webster Groves (Webster Groves, Mo.), Notre Dame-bound Prentiss Hubb of No. 19 Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.). Ramey won’t be available for the Statesmen when it opens its season with the Webster Classic beginning on December 7 because of a wrist injury. One of the nation’s top point guards also won’t be available with his team takes on No. 2 Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.) on national television December 14, against highly-regarded Fern Creek of Kentucky at the Midwest Showdown Shootout on December 16 or the City of Palms Classic beginning December 18. Hubbs will miss the season for a team considered the WCAC preseason favorite before word came down about his ACL injury.
Another player who had an injury scare with his wrist but is now back in action is Nico Mannion of Pinnacle (Scottsdale, Ariz.), which lost its first three games without its star player. Pinnacle will take on highly-regarded Mesa (Ariz). in the BIL HS Basketball Weekly Showcase on December 8 (9 pm ET) a day before taking on No. 32 Clark (Las Vegas, Nev.) at Hoophall West in a game that will also be broadcast by Ballislife (9 pm ET). On December 15 the the BIL Weekly Showcase will feature Pinnacle taking on No. 9 Shadow Mountain (Phoenix, Ariz.) in a highly anticipated showdown (9 pm ET). Shadow Mountain moved into the Top 10 this week and has gone over 100 points twice in three outings.
Updated FAB 50 National Team Rankings
Powered by Ballislife.com
(First poll of 2017-18 regular season; Through games played on Sunday, December 3; Preseason ranking in parentheses; *Indicates forfeit wins, forfeit losses not included; **Indicates forfeits and defaults not included)
|No.||Prev.||High School (City)||Record|
|1||1||Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)||5-0|
|2||2||Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.)||6-0|
|3||3||Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)||11-0|
|4||4||McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.)||4-0|
|5||5||Hudson Catholic (Jersey City, N.J.)||0-0|
|6||6||Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)||5-0|
|7||9||Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.)||10-1|
|8||8||Webster Groves (Webster Groves, Mo.)||0-0|
|9||12||Shadow Mountain (Phoenix, Ariz.)||3-0|
|10||13||Cypress Falls (Houston, Texas)||10-0|
|11||11||Archbishop Malloy (Queens, N.Y.)||0-0|
|12||15||Paul VI (Fairfax, Va.)||0-0|
|13||16||Simeon (Chicago, Ill.)||1-0|
|14||14||Archbishop Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio)||1-0|
|15||17||Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.)||0-0|
|16||21||University School (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.)||4-0|
|17||18||Brentwood Academy (Nashville, Tenn.)||2-0|
|18||23||Greensboro Day (Greensboro, N.C.)||11-0|
|19||19||Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)||1-0|
|20||20||Clarkston (Clarkston, Mich.)||0-0|
|21||44||Guyer (Denton, Texas)||11-0|
|22||22||Apple Valley (Apple Valley, Minn.)||0-0|
|23||24||IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)||3-0|
|24||25||Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.)||0-0|
|25||33||Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.)||4-0|
|26||26||Imhotep Charter (Philadelphia, Pa.)||0-0|
|27||27||Garfield (Seattle, Wash.)||1-0|
|28||BB||Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kan.)||6-1|
|29||10||La Lumiere (LaPorte, Ind.)||6-1|
|30||30||Jefferson (Portland, Ore.)||0-0|
|31||32||New Albany (New Albany, Ind.)||3-0|
|32||35||Clark (Las Vegas, Nev.)||1-0|
|33||31||Westlake (Austin, Texas)||10-1|
|34||36||Long Island Lutheran (Glen Head, N.Y.)||1-0|
|35||BB||John Carroll (Bel Air, Md.)||3-1|
|36||37||Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.)||1-0|
|37||28||Mt. St. Joseph (Baltimore, Md.)||4-1|
|38||38||DeMatha Catholic (Hyattsville, Md.)||0-0|
|39||39||Ranney School (Tinton Falls, N.Y.)||0-0|
|40||40||Rainier Beach (Seattle, Wash.)||1-0|
|41||50||Mountain Brook (Mountain Brook, Ala.)||7-1|
|42||43||Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasant, Utah)||4-0|
|43||41||Norcross (Norcross, Ga.)||6-1|
|44||42||Morgan Park (Chicago, Ill.)||1-1|
|45||45||Trinity (Louisville, Ky.)||3-0|
|46||7||Wesleyan Christian Academy (High Point, N.C.)||8-1|
|47||47||Cretin-Derham Hall (St. Paul, Minn.)||2-0|
|48||NR||Rancho Christian (Temecula, Calif.)||6-0|
|49||49||Cox Mill (Concord, N.C.)||4-0|
|50||BB||Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland, Calif.)||2-0|
Dropped Out: Previous No. 29 Trinity Episcopal (Richmond, Va.), No. 34 Pickerington North (Pickerington, Ohio), No. 46 Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.), No. 48 Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, Nev.).
Bubble Teams: Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.) 0-0; Belleville (Belleville, Mich.) 0-0; Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, Nev.) 2-1; Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.) 0-0; Blue Ridge (St. George, Va.) 2-1; Blue Valley Northwest (Overland Park, Kan.) 1-0; B.T. Washington (Tulsa, Okla.) 2-1; Butler (Matthews, N.C.) 4-0; Calloway (Jackson, Miss.) 7-1; Cardinal Hayes (Bronx, N.Y.) 2-0; Carl Albert (Midwest City, Okla.) 2-0; Cedar Falls (Cedar Falls, Iowa) 1-0; Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) 1-1; Creighton Prep (Omaha, Neb.) 2-0; Curie (Chicago, Ill.) 1-1; DeKaney (Houston, Texas) 11-0; DeSoto (DeSoto, Texas) 9-1;Denver East (Denver, Col.) 3-0; Desert Vista (Phoenix, Ariz.) 4-0; Fairfax (Los Angeles, Calif.) 1-1; Florida Prep (Melbourne, Fla.) 3-0; Folsom (Folsom, Calif.) 4-0; Garfield Heights (Garfield Heights, Ohio) 1-0; Hamilton Southeastern (Fishers, Ind.) 3-0; Hillhouse (New Haven, Conn.) 0-0; Hopkins (Minnetonka, Minn.) 0-1; Holy Spirit Prep (Atlanta, Ga.) 3-1; Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.) 1-0; Madison Prep Academy (Baton Rouge, La.) 2-0; Mansfield Timberview (Arlington, Texas) 8-2; Math, Science & Tech (Houston, Texas) 9-1; Meridian (Meridian, Miss.) 9-1; Modesto Christian (Modesto, Calif.) 1-0; North Side (Fort Wayne, Ind.) 3-1; Oak Ridge (Orlando, Fla.) 4-0; Orlando Christian Prep (Orlando, Fla.) 1-1; Osceola (Kissimmee, Fla.) 2-0; Pickerington Central (Pickerington, Ohio) 1-0; Pickerington North (Pickerington, Ohio) 0-1; Putnam City North (Oklahoma City, Okla.) 2-0; Scott County (Georgetown, Ky.) 2-0; Scotlandville (Baton Rouge, La.) 7-1; South Garland (Garland, Texas) 13-2; South Shore (Brooklyn, N.Y.) 1-0; Sun Prairie (Sun Prairie, Wis.) 1-0; Trinity Episcopal (Richmond, Va.) 3-2; Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.) 3-0; Waxahachie (Waxahachie, Texas) 7-1; West (Lee’s Summit, Mo.) 0-0; West Linn (West Linn, Ore.) 0-0; West Oaks Academy (Orlando, Fla.) 7-1; Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.) 4-2; Whitney Young (Chicago, Ill.) 6-1.
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 18 years ago.