Heck of a Class in Mass
Of the 49 other states in the nation, perhaps none can match the talent that Massachusetts has to offer in the class of 2012. Two of the top ten players in the country is just the beginning as the class also features a third player ranked within the top 25 and a few others who have a chance to play at the highest level.
Birch takes over as the new top ranked player in the state by virtue of his terrific summer. He opened with a strong performance at the Lebron James Skills Academy, closed with an MVP performance at the Nike Global Challenge, and shined at every other stop in between.
Murphy began the month in commanding form himself, earning high praise at the Adidas Invitational before suffering a knee injury shortly thereafter, that although minor, would continue to be a nuisance through the rest of the month.
Nevertheless, his summer still concluded with his selection to the Boost Mobile game in California.
The fact that Kaleb Tarczewski is the third ranked player in the state speaks to the incredible talent that Massachusetts has to offer in 2012. The seven-footer has all the tools to play this game for a long time and began to turn potential into production on a consistent basis this spring and summer.
Fourth ranked Evan Cummins and fifth ranked Jake Layman are two Massachusetts’ natives who played their way into high-major recruitment this summer. Both players are just beginning the process of discovering their full potential but showed flashes of their immense talent this summer.
Cushing Academy’s Egi Gjikondi sits in the number six spot as a tough and talented post player with a high motor while Wilbraham and Monson’s newly reclassified swingman Jules Tavares is an explosive playmaker with a bright future.
Charlestown’s Akosa Maduegbunam brought his game to a new level this summer with signs of an emerging skill set on the perimeter to match his undeniable physical tools and rises to number eight as a result.
Canadian sharpshooter Nikolaus Stauskas transfers into St. Mark’s after spending last year at the South Kent School and the six-foot-four swingman arrives with a steady dose of mid to high major interest.
Rounding out the top ten is another recent transfer in Shaquille Jones, the Rhode Island native who will be suiting up for Notre Dame Prep this year. Although still raw in many ways, Jones has the size, athleticism, and natural skills to develop into a high level prospect.
Beyond the state’s top ten there are a variety of other talented players sitting just on the outside looking in, including the likes of Ethan ODay, Tommy Carpenter, Olivier Paul Betu, Adam Bramanti, Eli Lubick, Eric Green, and many others.