MaxPreps.com's initial Class of 2015 rankings won't be released until next August, but a number of rising sophomores have already made serious headway toward securing a spot on that list.
Here's a look at some of the early contenders for elite status and a deeper look at 60 prospects we expect to make a strong push for inclusion in the initial Class of 2015 Top 100 in 12 months:
* Karl Towns
is the early leader in the clubhouse for No. 1 player honors in the rising sophomore class. The 6-foot-9 big man was part of the Dominican Republic's unsuccessful bid to reach the Olympics over the summer, but saw action against the eventual gold medal United States in tune-up play and didn't look out of place.
* Malik Newman
earned National Freshman of the Year honors from MaxPreps last winter after putting up 22.9 points per game and leading Callaway (Jackson)
to Mississippi's Class 5A state title. He did nothing to hurt his status as a potential star in the 2015 class over the summer with the Jackson Tigers club team.
* Towns isn't the only post showing early signs of elite promise. Ivan Rabb
of Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland, Calif.)
and Diamond Stone
of Dominican (Whitefish Bay, Wis.)
have some big-time offers already and showed they are capable of battling with talented upperclassmen at the LeBron James Skills Academy in July.
* Mickey Mitchell
had a breakout performance last December at the City of Palms Classic with Prestonwood Christian (Plano, Texas)
and enhanced his reputation as a budding star over the summer with the Texas Titans. At 6-7, Mitchell has some point-forward in him and also is on the college football radar as a quarterback.
* Southern California is loaded with 2015 guards. Sedrick Barefield
of Centennial (Corona)
, Tyler Dorsey
of St. John Bosco (Bellflower)
, Aaron Holiday
of Campbell Hall (North Hollywood)
and Marcus LoVett Jr.
of Providence (Burbank)
all make the list below. Dorsey, Holiday and LoVett all averaged over 20 points per game as freshmen at their respective schools
* Perennial Georgia power has a cast of young guns that will be tough to beat in the coming years. Wheeler's young guns. Daniel Giddens
(6-9, 215, C), Jaylen Brown
(6-4, 180, SG/SF) and Kejuan Johnson
(6-5, 210, SF) are all included on our watch list and will apparently be joined by fellow 2015 Jerron Love
, a highly-touted point guard, in the fall.Class of 2015 Players to Watch
Click here for a complete look at MaxPreps.com's Class of 2015 database