Preseason High School Boys Basketball Rankings: High School Top 25

Jason Hickman | Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Experience on the big stage and big time talent make Sierra Canyon our choice for preseason No. 1.

Video: Breaking down the High School Top 25
Sierra Canyon looking to become third Southern California team in four years to finish No. 1.

Back in 2012 and 2013, MaxPreps took a stab at separate rankings for independent academy programs and traditional high schools.

While some applauded the effort, for others it caused confusion and raised questions. Where do you draw the line between independents and traditionals? What about teams with associate membership to major governing bodies like the FHSAA (Florida) and NIAA (Nevada)?

We've elected to re-visit the approach in 2016-17, making a clear distinction between the two divisions – teams that play for a state championship (High School Top 25) and teams that don't (Independent Top 10).

With over 60 international players on the rosters of our Independent Top 10 teams and around 90 percent of the players coming from outside the state where the school is located, it's a bit of a farce to continue pretending that the playing field is close to being even.

Independent schools face virtually no standards, restrictions or guidelines when it comes to practice start dates and off-season workouts and conditioning, further widening the gap.

We look forward to recognizing and celebrating the success and achievements of teams in both sets of rankings this season.

On to our inaugural preseason High School Top 25 presented by the Army National Guard.
Click on school names for team previews

1. Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.)
Head coach: Ty Nichols
2015-16 record: 26-5

2. Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.)
Head coach: Doug Lipscomb
2015-16 record: 22-6

3. Memphis East (Memphis, Tenn.)
Head coach: Penny Hardaway
2015-16 record: 32-2, Class AAA state champions, No. 21 final national ranking

4. Greenforest (Decatur, Ga.)
Head coach: Larry Thompson
2015-16 record: 30-2, Class A state champions, No. 8 national ranking

5. Althoff Catholic (Belleville, Ill.)
Head coach: Greg Leib
2015-16 record: 32-2, Class 3A state champions, No. 20 national ranking

6. Patrick School (Elizabeth, N.J.)
Head coach: Chris Chavannes
2015-16 record: 23-6

7. Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.)
Head coach: Doug Mitchell
2015-16 record: 28-3

8. Westlake (Atlanta, Ga.)
Head coach: Darron Rogers Sr.
2015-16 record: 27-4, Class AAAAAA state champions

9. Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)
Head coach: Gary McKnight
2015-16 record: 27-5

10. Wesleyan Christian Academy (High Point, N.C.)
Head coach: Keith Gatlin
2015-16 record: 20-9

11. Garfield (Seattle, Wash.)
Head coach: Ed Haskins
2015-16 record: 26-3

12. Greensboro Day (Greensboro, N.C.)
Head coach: Freddy Johnson
2015-16 record: 28-5

13. Pebblebrook (Mableton, Ga.)
Head coach: George E. Washington Jr.
2015-16 record: 23-10

14. New Albany (Ind.)
Head coach: Jim Shannon
2015-16 record: 27-1, Class 4A state champions, No. 22 final national ranking

15. Chino Hills (Calif.)
Head coach: Stephan Gilling
2015-16 record: 35-0, CIF Open Division state champions, No. 1 final national ranking

16. Nathan Hale (Seattle, Wash.)
Head coach: Brandon Roy
2015-16 record: 3-18

17. Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)
Head coach: Steve Turner
2015-16 record: 24-10

18. Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia)
Head coach: Carl Arrigale
2015-16 record: 27-4, Class AAA state champions

19. Norcross (Ga.)
Head coach: Jesse McMillan
2015-16 record: 26-4

20. St. Anthony (Jersey City, N.J.)
Head coach: Bob Hurley
2015-16 record: 32-0, NJSIAA TOC winner, No. 3 final national ranking

21. Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas)
Head coach: Grant Rice
2015-16 record: 25-7, Division I state champions

22. DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.)
Head coach: Mike Jones
2015-16 record: 32-5, Maryland private school state champions, No. 13 final national ranking

23. Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.)
Head coach: Dave Boff
2015-16 record: 22-8

24. Iowa City West (Iowa City, Iowa)
Head coach: Steve Bergman
2015-16 record: 22-5

25. Westlake (Austin, Texas)
Head coach: Robert Lucero
2015-16 record: 30-4