Meet the News-Gazette's 77th All-State Boys' Basketball Team

Meet the News-Gazette's 77th All-State Boys' Basketball Team

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Meet the First Team

Jack Cooley, Glenbrook South, Senior

Before a thumb injury required surgery and sidelined the Notre Dame recruit, the 6-8 forward was averaging about 23 points, 14 boards and more than six blocks. He missed about six weeks of playing time but remains the state's premier big man.

Drew Crawford, Naperville Central, Senior

Without an exceptional surrounding cast, the Northwestern recruit made a case for Player of the Year honors. The 6-5 guard averaged about 24 points, eight rebounds and three assists and has a fine chance to move into the starting rotation for Bill Carmody's Wildcats as a freshman.

Crandall Head, Chicago Crane, Junior

The Illinois recruit – Luther's little brother – is well on his way to making a name for himself. The 6-4 wing overwhelmed most defenders with his athleticism and averaged about 21 points, seven rebounds and four steals in his first season at Crane.

Marcus Jordan, Whitney Young, Senior

Jeff's brother was the only Dolphin to average double figures. It wasn't how often he scored, but when he scored. The 6-4 guard had 41 points in the Class 4A semifinals and final as Whitney Young used a balanced roster to claim the state championship. He remains uncommitted.

James Kinney, Centennial, Senior

The 6-1 guard's final season will be remembered in C-U for some time. An Ohio recruit, Kinney led Centennial to its first state title in boys' basketball. He averaged about 17 points, seven assists and four boards as the Chargers closed the season on a 19-game winning streak.

Jonathan Mills, North Lawndale, Senior

Recognized as one of the state's best rebounders, the 6-5 center signed with Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. The high point of his final prep season might have been when he pulled down 23 boards in the Chicago city championship. He averaged 14 points, 16 boards and five assists.

Colin Nickerson, Waukegan, Senior

During the 2008 WDWS/News-Gazette Shootout at the Hall, a Fairfield coach watched from a courtside seat as onlookers commented, "You got a steal." A Fairfield recruit, Nickerson averaged about 19 points, four boards and three assists for the Class 4A runners-up.

Brandon Paul, Warren, Senior

As a sophomore, the 6-4 guard saw limited varsity minutes. Two years later he was in the mix for the Mr. Basketball award and would be the first such winner to attend Illinois since Dee Brown. With the potential to be an elite defender, Paul averaged 21 points, seven boards and three assists.

Cully Payne, Schaumburg, Senior

One Chicago-area media outlet said the 6-0 guard was a leading candidate for its State Player of the Year award before a back injury prematurely ended his prep career. The uncommitted prospect averaged over 20 points and was released from his letter of intent with Alabama.

Chasson Randle, Rock Island, Sophomore

A sought-after prospect in the state's 2011 recruiting class, the 6-2 guard averaged about 18 points, six rebounds and five assists. His leadership abilities were evident as he guided the Rocks to the Elite Eight of the state tournament for the first time in nine years.

Jereme Richmond, Waukegan, Junior

The school's first News-Gazette All-State Player of the Year averaged 20.1 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 2.3 blocks to lead the Bulldogs to their finest season, a second-place finish in Class 4A. The 6-7, 200-pound forward is committed to Illinois.

Darius Smith, Chicago Marshall, Senior

The Connecticut recruit sizzled in his final go-round, averaging 23 points, seven boards and seven assists as an All-Chicago Public League honoree. The 6-2 guard was arguably the state's top defender and thrice advanced to the state's Final Four.

Lenzelle Smith, Zion-Benton, Junior

With a big senior season, the Ohio State recruit would be one of the few players that can challenge Richmond, his close friend, for the All-State Player of the Year award in 2009-10. The bullish 6-5 guard averaged about 15 points, seven boards and three assists.

Reggie Smith, Harvey Thornton, Junior

The University of Illinois wishes it had a scholarship available for the aggressive 6-0 guard, who remains uncommitted. He averaged about 18 points and was the key figure on a Wildcats team that finished 24-1 and with the third-place trophy in Class 4A.

Matt Vogrich, Lake Forest, Senior

The Michigan recruit – you'll be seeing much more of the 6-4 guard – had some of his biggest games on bigger stages. The state's Gatorade Player of the Year averaged about 22 points, eight rebounds and two assists and should be an ideal fit for John Beilein's shooter-friendly system.


Second team


Joseph Bertrand, Sterling, Sr., 6-5, Illinois

David Brown, Rockton-Hononegah, Sr., 6-3, Western Michigan

Kannon Burrage, United Township, Sr., 6-2, Uncommitted

Chris Colvin, Chicago Whitney Young, Sr., 6-3, Iowa State

Alex Dragicevich, Glenbrook North, Jr., 6-6, Uncommitted

Malcolm Griffin, Hyde Park, Sr., 6-3, Uncommitted

Derek Needham, Chicago De La Salle, Sr., 6-0, Fairfield

Aaron Nelson, Chicago Bloom, Sr., 6-6, Uncommitted

James Pointer, Chicago Leo, Sr., 5-10, Uncommitted

Shaun Pratl, Richards, Sr., 6-8, Eastern Illinois

Rayvonte Rice, Centennial, Jr., 6-2, Uncommitted

Dyricus Simms-Edwards, Washington, Sr., 6-1, Uncommitted

Donivine Stewart, Peoria Limestone, So., 6-0, Uncommitted

Diamond Taylor, Bolingbrook, Sr., 6-3, Wisconsin

Lawrence Thomas, Springfield Southeast, Sr., 5-9, Uncommitted


Special mention


Tracy Abrams, Chicago Mt. Carmel, So.

Jeff Beck, Dundee-Crown, Sr.

Ryan Boatright, East Aurora, So.

Kyle Cain, T.F. North, Sr.

D.J. Cooper, Seton Academy, Sr.

Rob Covington, Proviso West, Sr.

Lavonte Dority, Chicago Foreman, Jr.

Logan Eitel, Marshall, Sr.

Lucas Eitel, Marshall, Sr.

Dwayne Evans, Neuqua Valley, Jr.

Keith Ford, North Chicago, Sr.

Dakota Getz, Macon Meridian, Sr.

Bradley Ghere, Ridgeview, Sr.

Paris Gulley, Peoria Manual, Sr.

Phillip Jackson, Providence-St. Mel, Jr.

Conrad Krutwig, Jacobs, Sr.

Meyers Leonard, Robinson, Jr.

Karl Madison, Springfield Lanphier, Jr.

Drew Minton, Cerro Gordo, Sr.

Jordan Prosser, Eureka, Sr.

D'Mitri Riggs, Bloomington, Sr.

Ronald Steward, Zion-Benton, Sr.

Will Triggs, Edwardsville, Jr.

Zeke Upshaw, Chicago Lab School, Sr.

Zebo Zebe, Unity, Sr.


Honorable mention


Byron Bailey, Massac County, Sr.

Max Bielfeldt, Peoria Notre Dame, So.

Dan Bolsen, Lovington, Sr.

Alex Coppejans, Annawan, Sr.

Chas Cross, Winnebago, Jr.

Jeremy D'Amico, Geneva, Sr.

Mack Darrow, Barrington, Sr.

Victor Davis, Galesburg, Jr.

Anthony Dixon, Hyde Park, Sr.

Antonio Drummond, Peoria Central, Fr.

Seth Evans, Seneca, Sr.

Zach Forbes, Quincy, Jr.

Raul Guzman, Morton, Sr.

Jordan Harks, Glenbard South, Sr.

Hayden Hoerdemann, Bloom. CC, So.

Xavier Humphrey, Fenwick, Sr.

Anthony Johnson, Whitney Young, Jr.

Jeff Johnson, Centennial, Jr.

Jelani Johnson, Waubonsie Valley, Sr.

Jeremy Jones, Chicago Simeon, Sr.

Anthony Kelley, Aurora CC, Sr.

Nathan Kohler, Kew. Wethersfield, Sr.

Scott Mammoser, Newton, Sr.

Matt Milton, Mascoutah, Jr.

Billy Molinari, Peoria Christian, Sr.


Connor Mooney, Lake Zurich, Sr.

Nick Neari, St. Charles North, Sr.

Jordan Nelson, Lincoln, So.

Tony Nixon, Seton Academy, Sr.

Tom Norton, Bloomington CC, Sr.

Jonathon Nutt, Palmyra, Sr.

Matt Peterson, South Shelby, Sr.

Kevin Pettiford, Belleville East, Sr.

Brandon Pullman, Rock Island, Sr.

Nate Rogers, Westch. St. Joseph, Sr.

Alex Rossi, New Trier, Jr.

Tim Rusthoven, Wheaton Academy, Jr.

Luke Scarlata, Morton, Sr.

Kevin Senechelle, St. Charles East, Sr.

Mike Shaw, Chicago De La Salle, So.

Bryant Smith, St. Patrick, Sr.

Carson Sonnenberg, Belleville Althoff, Sr.

Ahmad Starks, Whitney Young, Jr.

John Taylor, North Lawndale, Sr.

Jordan Threloff, DeKalb, Jr.

Jordan Walker, Seton Academy, Sr.

Kedric Williams, Normal Comm., Sr.

Ben Worner, Washington, Sr.

Markus Yarbrough, Zion-Benton, Sr.

Kyle Young, Lincoln, Sr.


N-G Players of the Year

2009, Jereme Richmond, Waukegan
2008, Lewis Jackson, Decatur Eisenhower
2007, Derrick Rose, Chicago Simeon
2006, Jon Scheyer, Glenbrook North
2005, Jon Scheyer, Glenbrook North
2004, Shaun Livingston, Peoria Central
2003, Shannon Brown, Proviso East
2002, Dee Brown, Proviso East
2001, Eddy Curry, Thornwood
2000, Darius Miles, East St. Louis
1999, Brian Cook, Lincoln
1998, Quentin Richardson, Whit. Young
1997, Sergio McClain, Peoria Manual
1996, Ronnie Fields, Farragut
1995, Kevin Garnett, Farragut
1994, Antoine Walker, Mount Carmel
1993, Rashard Griffith, Chicago King
1992, Chris Collins, Glenbrook North
1991, Howard Nathan, Peoria Manual
1990, Jamie Brandon, Chicago King
1989, Jamie Brandon, Chicago King
1988, LaPhonso Ellis, E. St. Louis Lincoln
1987, Marcus Liberty, Chicago King
1986, Nick Anderson, Chicago Simeon; Larry Smith, Alton
1985, Ed Horton, Springfield Lanphier
1984, Roger McClendon, Centennial
1983, Marty Simmons, Lawrenceville

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