For much of the country, this marks the final weekend of the high school basketball regular season.
The PrimeTime Shootout – being played Saturday and Sunday in Roselle, N.J. – will take center stage as the last big showcase event of the season.
The Shootout was at one time regarded as the premier happening in high school hoops, helping young talents like Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler, Dwight Howard, LeBron James and DaJuan Wagner rise to national notoriety.
While the 2013 PrimeTime Shootout won't feature the kind of starpower, many of the local staples of the event will be in action, including St. Anthony (Jersey City)
and St. Benedict's Prep (Newark)
. Weekend WatchFive key games likely to impact next week's national rankingsNo. 7 St. Anthony vs. Linden:
A dangerous matchup for the nationally-ranked Friars on Saturday at the PrimeTime Shootout. Linden beat then-No. 15 Math Civics & Sciences (Philadelphia)
last week and is thoroughly battle-tested with games against Blair Academy (Blairstown)
, The Patrick School (Elizabeth)
and Roselle Catholic
in recent weeks. Hickman's pick: St. Anthony*No. 10 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) vs. Omaha Central (Neb.):
Quick, when was the last time a team from Virginia played a team from Nebraska in high school basketball? Oak Hill's appearance Saturday at the Heartland Hoops Classic in Grand Island, Neb., is a huge deal locally. Central has been anxiously awaiting this game since it was announced last February. Hickman's pick: Oak Hill AcademyNo. 16 North Little Rock (Ark.) vs. Jonesboro:
NLR was taken to the wire by 20-3 Jonesboro back on Jan. 11 in a 74-73 victory. Since mid-December, no other team has stayed within 12 points of the Charging Wildcats. This one is in North Little Rock's house Friday night. Hickman's pick: North Little Rock
Northland (Columbus, Ohio) vs. Brookhaven (Ohio):
Last week we touched on Northland's streak of 100 consecutive victories in Columbus City League play
. Brookhaven nearly ended that run of success back on Jan. 8 in a 63-61 loss. The Bearcats are looking to become the streak stoppers this time around. Hickman's pick: NorthlandCarmel (Ind.) vs. Hamilton Southeastern (Fishers):
This could be a national rankings play-in game. Both teams are ranked in the top five of Jeff Sagarin's Indiana High School Basketball Rankings and own a combined record of 29-3. Hamilton Southeastern beat Carmel a year ago at home behind 23 points from future Michigan Wolverine Zak Irvin
, who the Greyhounds will have to deal with again this season. Hickman's pick: Hamilton Southeastern* Indicates Academy Top 10 Ranking
Other games of interestNo. 18 Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas) vs. Centennial (Las Vegas):
Gorman hasn't lost to a Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association opponent in nearly two full years. Centennial gave the Gaels a good run in a 79-71 loss two weeks ago.No. 19 Roosevelt (Washington, D.C.) vs. Riverdale Baptist (Upper Marlboro, Md.):
The Roughriders put their unbeaten record on the line Thursday night against a capable Riverdale Baptist squad the features George Washington-bound guard Nigel Johnson