29.3 C
Los Angeles
Thursday, July 4, 2024

Cooper Flagg,Among Finalists for Gatorade Boys Player of the Year Award.

SportsCooper Flagg,Among Finalists for Gatorade Boys Player of the Year Award.

Cooper Flagg is having a wonderful year. First of all he’s been phenomenal on the court, just blowing people away to the point where he’s seen as a potential generational talent. Then his college choices came down to either UConn, fresh off a national championship, or his dream school, Duke.
The longtime narrative that Duke doesn’t produce NBA talent is now a thing of the past. When you look at the league today, it’s hard to skim through a roster without stumbling across a former Duke Blue Devil in some capacity. Whether it’s as a player, coach, or front office member, you can’t escape the brand. While Kentucky still has the upper hand on producing pros, Duke has rapidly closed the gap over the past decade. It started with Kyrie Irving and has evolved into Zion Williamson, Jayson Tatum, and Paolo Banchero with Cooper Flagg as the next one up.

Flagg was just named the Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year award. First-time All-Star Paolo Banchero surprised him with the award during a practice at Montverde Academy. The Brotherhood is a phrase coined by the Duke men’s basketball program to emphasize the everlasting connection players will have to the program and each other once you put on the Duke uniform.

Cooper Flagg, Airious “Ace” Bailey and VJ Edgecombe were named the three finalists for the 2023-24 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Award on Thursday.

The 17-year-old Flagg plays his high school basketball at Montverde Academy in Montverde, Florida, and he has committed to play his college basketball at Duke.

Flagg reclassified to the recruiting class of 2024, and the 6’9″ forward is rated by 247Sports as the top overall player in his class.

Bailey is a 6’8″ wing who stars at McEachern High School in Powder Springs, Georgia, and is committed to play collegiately at Rutgers.

The 17-year-old Bailey is just behind Flagg in 247Sports’ rankings as the No. 2 overall player in the 2024 class, plus he is the No. 1-rated small forward.

Edgecombe was born in the Bahamas, but he immigrated to the United States a few years ago and eventually moved to Brookville, New York, to play his high school basketball at Long Island Lutheran after initially playing in Florida.

A 6’5″ guard, Edgecombe has committed to play at Baylor, and he is the No. 4 overall player in the 2024 recruiting class by 247Sports’ composite rankings, as well as the No. 1 shooting guard.

In addition to being finalists for the 2023-24 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Award, Flagg, Bailey and Edgecombe were named Gatorade State Player of the Year for Florida, Georgia and New York, respectively, as well.

The Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Award is the most prestigious honor in high school basketball, and it has been given several players who have gone on to become superstars in the NBA.

Among them are LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Jayson Tatum, Karl-Anthony Towns, Kevin Love, Stephon Marbury, Alonzo Mourning, Chris Webber and Chet Holmgren.

Either Flagg, Bailey or Edgecombe will join that illustrious list next week when the winner of the 2023-24 award is announced.

Cooper Flagg is having a wonderful year. First of all he’s been phenomenal on the court, just blowing people away to the point where he’s seen as a potential generational talent. Then his college choices came down to either UConn, fresh off a national championship, or his dream school, Duke (news flash – he chose Duke).

And now he’s been named the Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

But the way he was told and got the trophy – well, as we said, it’s been a great year for Flagg.

He was at practice on Tuesday when former Duke star Paolo Banchero walked out on the court with a big o’ trophy and told him he was the winner.

Flagg told the Orlando Sentinel that “I was a little confused at first, but once it clicked a little bit for me, it was impulsive. It’s a really cool experience and it’s really special just to get the award from him.

“It’s something that I don’t take lightly and I’m just incredibly grateful.”

It’s pretty cool that Banchero got to welcome Flagg to the Brotherhood in this way. It’s not quite the same, but Christian Laettner unknowingly brought JJ Redick in (when he hit The Shot against Kentucky) and Redick helped bring Jaden Schutt in in a similar way.

If it’s self-sustaining then Duke is in a great situation.

Check out our other content

Check out other tags:

Most Popular Articles