Updated FAB 50: March Madness Indeed!

Updated FAB 50: March Madness Indeed!


More states wrapped up their state championships over the weekend and there are only a few more to go. After Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, Ohio and Pennsylvania wrap up next weekend, all that will be left is Chipotle Nationals on April 4-6 in Brownsburg (Ind.). The recent championships caused change to the latest edition of the FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com. For the second consecutive week, there are three newcomers, including teams still alive in Kentucky and Ohuio plus a state champion from Nebraska.

RELATED: Chipotle Nationals Record Book (2009-2023)

By Ronnie Flores

The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, known as March Madness, released its brackets on Sunday and for high school basketball, the Madness has taken place the past two weeks with one more big weekend to go. After an epic weekend for high school hoops March 8-10, last weekend was big too, with results that shook up the new FAB 50 National Team Rankings powered by Ballislife.com.

In North Carolina, three North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) teams won state titles and cemented their spot in the final FAB 50 set for April 8. NCHSAA Class 3A Central Cabarrus (Concord, N.C.) defeated Seventy-First (Fayetteville, N.C.), 90-62, to finish 33-0 and move up a spot to No. 8 in this week’s rankings. Senior forward Josh Dalton scored a game-high 22 points and Lees-McRae commit Desmond Kent Jr. had 20 in the first half in the win for the Vikings, who defeated previously unbeaten Hickory (Hickory, N.C.) in the semifinals, 87-78.

The Vikings will enter the 2024-25 season riding a 65-game winning streak, the nation’s longest active streak, after finishing No. 7 in the FAB 50 last season at 32-0. Central Cabarrus has won 95 of its last 96 games.

North Mecklenburg (Huntersville, N.C.) moved up a spot this week to No. 24 after capturing the Class 4A crown with a 57-47 victory over New Hanover (Wilmington, N.C.). The Vikings were led to the program’s third state crown behind the play of Duke-bound Mr. Basketball USA candidate Isaiah Evans, who scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds as North Meck handed New Hanover its only loss of the season. North Meck state title was a good omen for No. 23 McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.), which handed the Vikings one of its three losses with the others coming against No. 11 Link Academy (Branson, Mo.) and No. 38 Camden (Camden, N.J.). North Meck also recorded a big victory over No. 27 Myers Park (Charlotte, N.C.) in the state quarterfinals, as Evans scored 48 points.

Reidsville (Reidsville, N.C.) moved up seven spots this week to No. 41 after capturing the NCHSAA Class 2A crown with a perfect 29-0 mark. The Rams defeated Farmville Central (FarmVille, N.C.), 78-77, in overtime, in one of the most well-played championship games of the season. Reidsville was led to victory by junior Johnniyus Sharpe Jr., who netted a game-high 29 points, including 3-of-6 3-pointers. In a pressure-packed game, Sharpe made all 10 of his free throw attempts, as Reidsville went 13-of-13 from the line.

Similar to Central Cabarrus, Wisconsin Lutheran (Milwaukee, Wis.) secured a Top 15 final FAB 50 ranking by capturing a state title, in its case the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) D2 state crown. The Vikings defeated bubble club Pewaukee (Pewaukee, Wis.), 83-62, as Evan’s future teammate at Duke, Kon Knueppel, has 11 points and 11 assists. The big win for Wisconsin Lutheran came in the semifinals, when it downed Nicolet (Glendale, Wis.), 56-54, on a lay-up right before the buzzer by Alex Greene off a pretty left-handed feed from sophomore Zavier Zens. Zens got the ball as Knueppel was looking to make a move before falling down and passing it off before any violation was called.

Right behind Wisconsin Lutheran in the rankings at No. 10 is Fishers (Fishers, Ind.), the favorite to capture the Indiana High School State Athletic Association (IHSAA) Class 4A state title over Ben Davis (Indianapolis, Ind.) on March 30 at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Fishers’ only loss is to a Carmel (Ind.) team it split with.

The Kentucky High School Athletics Association (KHSAA) Sweet 16 will take place March 20-23 at Rupp Arena. Two FAB 50 ranked teams could meet in the March 23 Final: No. 25 Great Crossing (Georgetown, Ky.) and one of three newcomers this week, No. 47 Newport (Newport, Ky.), who has already lost to Great Crossing. One of the 16 remaining teams has to win twice on March 23 to capture one of the two remaining single-class state tournaments in the country (Delaware is the other).

No. 36 Wayzata (Plymouth, Minn.) is seeking its third Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) Class 4A state crown in four years after knocking off Hopkins (Minnetonka, Minn.) for the second time in three games this season in the sectional final, 105-76. The Trojans were led to victory by Creighton recruit Jackson McAndrew, who finished with 40 points.

In Ohio, No. 44 St. Ignatius (Cleveland, Ohio) is the newcomer, joining Nebraska School Activities Association (NSAA) Class A state champ Bellevue West (Bellevue, Neb.), who joins the fray at No. 50 this week. The Thunderbirds captured their second consecutive state title by defeating rival Millard North (Omaha, Neb.), 57-48, to avenge an earlier loss to the team it met for the state title for the fifth consecutive year. As for St. Ignatius, it will take on bubble club Hayes (Delaware, Ohio) in the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) D1 semifinals on March 23 at University of Dayton Arena. The other semifinal pits Centerville (Centerville, Ohio) versus Whitmer (Toledo, Ohio). Centerville knocked off previous No. 43 Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio) to advance to the Final Four. The championship game is set for Sunday at 8:30 pm ET.

Pennsylvania and Alaska will also conclude the 2023-24 season in the coming week.

Chipotle Nationals AnnouncedEvery team’s final ranking will not be finalized until the completion of Chipotle Nationals, which is set for April 4 – 6 at Brownsburg (Ind.). Five of the top six teams and eight of the top 14 FAB 50 teams will compete in the event (formerly known as GEICO Nationals). The quarterfinal matchups are as follows (seeds listed in parenthesis) and all will be televised by ESPNU:

No. 1 Montverde Academy (1) vs. No. 12 AZ Compass Prep (8), 8 pm ETNo. 4 Long Island Lutheran (4) vs. No. 2 Columbus (5), 4 pm ETNo. 6 Prolific Prep (3) vs. No. 11 Link Academy (6), 6 pm ETNo. 3 Paul VI (2) vs. No. No. 14 IMG Academy (7), 2 pm ET

The semifinals on April 5 will be televised on ESPN2, as will the title game on April 6 (12 pm ET).

CLICK HERE to check out the all-time Chipotle Nationals Team and Individual Record Book (2009-2023).

RELATED:  Preseason 2023-24 Mr. Basketball USA Tracker | “In The Paint” Podcast (Spotify) |  “In The Paint” Podcast (YouTube) | Chipotle Nationals Record Book

Updated FAB 50 National Team RankingsPowered by Ballislife.com

(13th poll of 2023-24 regular season; Through games played on Sunday, March 17; *Indicates forfeit wins, forfeit losses not included; **Indicates forfeits and defaults not included; ***Indicates season not complete.)

No. Prev. High School (City)Record

11Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)29-0***

22Columbus (Miami, Fla.)27–4***

33Paul VI (Chantilly, Va.)33-2***

44Long Island Lutheran (Glen Head, N.Y.)21-4****

55Plano East (Plano, Texas)40-0

66Prolific Prep (Napa, Calif.)31-5***

77Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.)33-3

89Central Cabarrus (Concord, N.C.)33-0

910Wisconsin Lutheran (Milwaukee, Wis.)30-0

1012Fishers (Fishers, Ind.)28-1***

118Link Academy (Branson, Mo.)25-6***

1211AZ Compass Prep (Chandler, Ariz.)27-5***

1313Stony Point (Round Rock, Texas)38-2

1414IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)18-8***

1515St. Rose (Belmar, N.J.)29-2

1616Archbishop Stepinac (White Plains, N.Y.)25-4***

1717Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.)29-3

1819St. Mary Prep (Orchard Lake, Mich.)27-1

1922Ridge View (Columbia, S.C.)27-2

2021Roosevelt (Eastvale, Calif.)31-4

2123Perry (Gilbert, Ariz.)24-6

2224Grayson (Loganville, Ga.)30-2

2326McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.)26-6

2425North Mecklenburg (Huntersville, N.C.)30-3

2532Great Crossing (Georgetown, Ky.)34-1***

2633Oak Ridge (Orlando, Fla.)27-4

2727Myers Park (Charlotte, N.C.)27-4

2828John Marshall (Richmond, Va.)25-3

2929Bullis (Potomac, Md.)27-3

3030Sidwell Friends (Washington, D.C.) 27-4

3131Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)28-6

3236St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.)28-7

3337Salesian (Richmond, Calif.)31-2

3434La Lumiere (La Porte, Ind.)23-5

3535Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.)27-7

3642Wayzata (Plymouth, Minn.)27-1***

3739Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.)28-4

3840Camden (Camden, N.J.)30-2

3941Kell (Marietta, Ga.)28-3

4045Homewood Flossmor (Flossmor, Ill.)33-4

4148Reidsville (Reidsville, N.C.)29-0

4218Roman Catholic (Philadelphia, Pa.)26-3

4344Millennium (Goodyear, Ariz.)25-5

44NRSt. Ignatius (Cleveland, Ohio)24-3***

4546Winter Haven (Winter Haven, Fla.)27-2

4647Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)29-6

47NRNewport (Newport, Ky.)32-3***

4849Beaumont United (Beaumont, Texas)34-4

4950Northwest (Shawnee Mission, Kan.)25-0

50NRBellevue West (Bellevue, Neb.)27-1

Dropped Out: Previous No. 20 Combine Academy (Lincolnton, N.C.), No. 38 Bartlett (Bartlett, Tenn.), No. 43 Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio).

Bubble Teams: Arrowhead (Heartland, Wis.) 27-3; Bartlett (Bartlett, Tenn.) 32-5; Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas, Nev.) 24-5; Brennan (San Antonio, Texas) 31-5; Centerville (Centerville, Ohio) 19-8***; Central Catholic (Portland, Ore.) 28-3; Christian (Grand Rapids, Mich.) 26-3; Combine Academy (Lincolnton, N.C.) 23-3; Curie (Chicago, Ill.) 31-3; Dale (Dale, Okla.) 30-2; De Paul Prep (Chicago, Ill.) 35-2; De Pere (De Pere, Wis.) 26-2; Edmond North (Edmond, Okla.) 24-4; Fort Bend Clements (Sugar Land, Texas) 32-1; Hayes (Delaware, Ohio) 27-1***; Hickory (Hickory, N.C.) 31-1; Hoover (Hoover, Ala.) 30-3; Imhotep Charter (Philadelphia, Pa.) 27-3***; Independence (Thompson’s Station, Tenn.) 32-6; Jackson-Reed (Washington, D.C.) 33-3; Kennedy (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) 25-1; Kokomo (Kokomo, Ind.) 25-4; Lehi (Lehi, Utah) 24-4; Lexington (Lexington, S.C.) 28-2; Lexington Catholic (Lexington, Ky.) 32-3; Liberty Magnet (Baton Rouge, La.) 33-4; Lincoln (Warren, Mich.) 24-4; Lincoln Park (Midland, Pa.) 25-3***; Marquette University (Milwaukee, Wis.) 26-4; Millard North (Omaha, Neb.) 23-3; Moeller (Cincinnati, Ohio) 26-2; Mt. St. Joseph (Baltimore, Md.) 36-5; Noblesville (Noblesville, Ind.) 22-3; Notre Dame (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) 31-4; Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) 21-6; Owasso (Owasso, Okla.) 26-4; Pewaukee (Pewaukee, Wis.) 25-5; Raymond (Raymond, Miss.) 31-4; Seven Lakes (Katy, Texas) 35-4**; Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.) 26-4; St. Anne’s-Bellfield (Charlottesville, Va.) 26-4; St. Ignatius (Cleveland, Ohio) 24-3***; St. Joseph (Santa Maria, Calif.) 31-4; St. Peter’s Prep (Jersey City, N.J.) 26-3; Valley (West Des Moines, Iowa) 21-5; Valor Christian (Highlands Ranch, Col.) 26-2; Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.) 26-6; Volcano Vista (Albuquerque, N.M.) 30-1; Lincoln (Warren, Mich.) 24-4; Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasant, Utah) 15-7; Westfield (Westfield, Ind.) 19-3; Whitmer (Toledo, Ohio) 25-2***; Woodside (Newport News, Va.) 27-1.

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 24 years ago.

Ronnie Flores is the national Grassroots editor of Ballislife.com. He can be reached at [email protected]. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @RonMFlores


Source link


Learn More →