In an effort to expand our basketball recruiting coverage, we'll be making our Recruit Review series a bit more regular to keep you up-to-date with future Badgers -- and possible future Badgers -- as they perform on the high school stage.
Class of 2014
Ethan Happ, 6’8" 195 lb – Rockridge (Ill.) HS
Voted to the preseason Third Team All-State, Happ has led Rockridge to an early season 5-0 record and No. 1 ranking in the Illinois Associated Press Class 2A poll. Happ is averaging 32.2 points and has scored over 30 points in four of the games.
Class of 2015
Henry Ellenson, 6’9" 250 lb – Rice Lake (Wis.) HS
Ellenson is one of the best players in Wisconsin. He was invited to the USA basketball U16 tryouts and demonstrated he could compete against the elite players in the country. Ellenson leads a Rice Lake squad ranked No. 6 in the state at the Division 2 level and opened the season with 22 points in a win against New Richmond.
Diamond Stone, 6’10" 250 lb – Whitefish Bay (Wis.) Dominican
Stone is a consensus five-star prospect and top 10 player in the 2015 class. He returns to lead defending Division 4 champion Dominican, which started the year ranked No. 1 and the team to beat in their class. Like Ellenson, Stone was invited to the USA basketball U16 tryouts and was on the team that won a gold medal in the FIBA Americas tournament. He opened season with 20 points and 17 rebounds in win over Little Chute.
Note – Ellenson and Stone will go head to head at the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook Shootout December 27. I highly recommend checking this out if you’re in the area. And even if you are not, it will be worth the drive.
Charles Matthews, 6’5" 185 lb – Chicago (Ill.) St. Rita
Similar to Stone, Matthews is a consensus five-star prospect and top player in this class. Wisconsin started recruiting him early on and is still in good standing. However with recent offers from Kansas and Kentucky, the Badgers will be challenged to make the cut. Matthews is a preseason First Team All-State member (the only non-senior) in an Illinois basketball pool absolutely loaded with elite talent. He missed the first game for St. Rita (ranked No.
Carlton Bragg, 6’9" 220 lb – Cleveland (Ohio) Villa Angela-St. Joseph
Bragg is another player that vaulted into the top of the 2015 rankings with a strong summer on the AAU circuit and now boasts offers from pretty much every major basketball school in the Midwest. He is widely considered the top basketball prospect in Ohio and his high school team is the preseason No. 1 team in the state.
Jarvis Johnson, 6’1" 185 lb – Minneapolis (Minn.) De LaSalle
Johnson picked up his Wisconsin offer after performing well at the Nike Peach Jam tournament over the summer. He is the only point guard offered in either of the next two classes. His recruitment is picking up with interest from Michigan State and Kansas along with hometown Minnesota, so he seems like a long shot to end up a Badger. Johnson plays at De La Salle, a top-ranked team and two-time defending Class 3A state champions. He opened the season with 11 points against Blake and faces a big time showdown against top-ranked 2014 Duke commit Tyus Jones on Saturday, December 7.
Aaron Jordan, 6’4" 170 lb – Plainfield (Ill.) East
Wisconsin was Jordan’s first major offer and after an impressive summer (stop if you have heard this before) is now garnering more attention from major schools along with a top 100 rating in the class of 2015. Bo Ryan sure has a knack for identifying players early. Plainfield East is a top 20 team in Illinois and has been paced early this season by Jordan’s 19 points per game through four contests.
Brandon Hutton, 6’6" 250 lb – Chicago (Ill.) De La Salle
Hutton is known more for his defense at this point but impressed the Badgers enough with his athleticism to draw comparisons to Alando Tucker. Hutton is another diamond in the rough player, which Ryan identifies early and watches explode shortly afterward. If Hutton’s improvement continues along the same meteoric rise as last summer, he could be a big-time steal.
Marshawn Wilson, 6’2" 180 lb – St. Paul (Minn.) Hill Murray
Wilson's recruitment is one to watch closely. He is one of the more recent rumored Badger offers and might indicate some of the earlier offered players are cooling on Wisconsin. Wilson attended the Wisconsin advanced camp this summer and built off an impressive summer of AAU ball to pick up some high major interest. Wilson has led Hill-Murray to an early 2-0 start, averaging 25.5 points along the way.
Sacar Anim, 6’4" 183 lb – Minneapolis (Minn.) De LaSalle
It might be easy to overlook Sacar Anim with Reid Travis and Jarvis Johnson getting the bulk of the attention in Minnesota. That would be an easy mistake to make. Amin is a player though, and brings all the intangible qualities that Bo Ryan covets. He opened the season with 22 points to lead De La Salle in scoring in its first game this year.
Matt Heldt, 6’10" 201 lb – Neenah (Wis.) HS
Stone and Ellenson are top post priorities for 2015. Heldt remains on the radar but probably won’t get offered unless both Stone and Ellenson take their basketball talents elsewhere. The Neenah Rockets are 2-0 this season with Heldt leading the way with 21 points per game.
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