Just as Wisconsin's seniors are finishing up their careers in Madison, future Badgers who will arrive on campus next fall have some unfinished business are they wrap up their high school careers.
Bo Ryan's solid four-man recruiting class for next year draws from four different states -- Wisconsin, Minnesota, Maryland and Ohio. Each player is focused on winning their respective state tournament with their high school teammates. Read on for updates on each player (including Diamond Stone) and information on upcoming playoff games to follow.
Brevin Pritzl, 6’4, 185 lb – DePere (WI) HS
Brevin Pritzl used his senior season to establish himself as the all-time leading scorer in school history. Pritzl averages just under 26 points per game, including a season high 44 points on December 16th against Manitowoc Lincoln. He also surpassed De Pere's mark for most three-point baskets with 171. Needless to say, Pritzl can fill it up and hopes to continue is scoring prowess during the playoffs. De Pere has earned a No. 2 seed in Sectional #2 in the WIAA Division 1 tournament bracket.
Up Next: WIAA playoffs - Hartford (12-10) vs. De Pere (19-3) on Friday, March 6 @ 7 p.m.
Alex Illikainen, 6’9, 255 lb – Brewster Academy (NH) HS
A year ago, Alex Illikainen averaged 26 points and 11 rebounds per game as a junior at Grand Rapids (MN). Playing alongside eight teammates committed to play Division I college basketball this season at Brewster Academy suppressed Illikainen's stats, but allowed him the step up in competition that will serve him better continuing his playing career at Wisconsin. Illikainen's season best performance came against Spire Institute on November 19, when he scored 14 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. He helped Brewster secure a No. 1 seed in the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council Class AAA tournament. Additionally Brewster will participate in the 10-team National Prep Championship including the best prep schools across the country.
Up Next: NEPSAC playoffs: TBD vs. Brewster (29-1) on Wednesday, March 4
National Prep Championship: TBD vs. Brewster on Tuesday, March 10
Charlie Thomas IV, 6’7, 240 lb – River Hill (MD) HS
Charlie Thomas IV has averaged 25 points per game in leading River Hill to a No. 1 regional seed in the Maryland Class 3A East region. River Hill is considered one of the favorites to win the section. Highlights of the season include a 29-point, 18-rebound performance in a 58-48 against Reservoir on February 10.
Up Next: MPSSAA playoffs – Glenelg (9-10) vs. River Hill (17-5) on Tuesday, March 3 @ 7 p.m.
Khalil Iverson, 6’4, 193 lb – Rutherford B. Hayes (OH) HS
The meteoric rise of Khalil Iverson continues at a blistering pace. After receiving an offer and committing to Wisconsin, Iverson tallied three (!) triple doubles in the span of 11 days and was just three assists short of another on Saturday.
Khalil Iverson goes for 23 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists to lead Delaware past Marion-Harding, 57-35. Another day at the office— Zach Fleer (@ZachFleerLGHL) March 1, 2015
Adding to his accolades include Ohio Capital Conference Capital Division player of the year and All-Columbus Division 1 Player of the Year. Iverson and his teammates will be the No. 8 seed in the Columbus District.
Up Next: OHSAA Playoffs – TBD vs. Hayes (17-4) on Wednesday, March 4
Diamond Stone, 6’10" 255 lb – Dominican (WI) HS
Diamond Stone remains UW's top remaining target in 2015. While reading internet tea leaves on recruiting is a fool’s errand, the wind does seem to be blowing towards Madison. Plus, comparing yourself to National Player of the Year candidate goes a long way toward winning over a fan base.
Stone is one of the top high school players in the country by nearly every measure and has had the senior season to back it up. Stone is averaging 25 points and 13 rebounds a game, including a MONSTER 43-point, 25-rebound game in a win against Racine Case on February 7. Dominican will continue the season as a No. 1 sectional seed in the WIAA Division 4 playoffs where they are a favorite to four-peat as champions. The biggest bump in Stone's road to Madison could be the Racine St. Catherine's squad that recently beat Dominican and shared the Metro Classic Conference title.
Up Next: WIAA Playoffs – TBD vs. Dominican (19-3) on Friday, March 6 @ 7 p.m.