2019 Rankings: Biggest Risers


Posted On: 01/19/18 8:50 AM

The 2017-18 high school basketball season is roughly halfway complete. Here five prospects in the 2019 class who are rising up the rankings during their junior campaigns.

5. Cole Nau (Brookfield Central)

In terms of college prospects, perhaps Nau is ranked too high. However, in terms of overall talent and value, there’s no doubt that Nau belongs up here.

A flat out winner that gets the most out of his ability, Nau is a tenacious competitor that does a little bit of everything. First and foremost, Nau is one of the best on-ball defenders in the state. From high school to AAU, Nau always defends the opposition’s best player and usually wins those head-to-head matchups.

Averaging 10 points, five rebounds, and three assists per game as a junior, Nau fills a variety of roles. Due to the presence of Gage Malensek, he’s forced to play off the ball, but handles that job well as a spot up shooter. Nau is at his best off the dribble. A smooth pull-up jump shooter, Nau lives in the 12-15 foot range.

He may not look the part, but Nau is certainly worth of Division 1 looks this spring/summer.

9. David Skogman (Waukesha West)

The state of Wisconsin always produces skilled big men at the mid-major level. Skogman is no exception in 2019.

Averaging a double-double at 13 points and 10 rebounds this season, Skogman is putting together a breakout campaign. Able to step out and shoot the basketball, the 6-foot-9 junior pulls bigs out of the paint with a guard-like stroke. Skogman spends a lot of time on the perimeter and is very intriguing with his ability to handle the rock and be a playmaker.

On the other end, Skogman still needs to put on weight and strength, but has a budding frame that looks like it’ll fill out nicely. A bouncy, shot blocking presence, it wouldn’t be surprising if Skogman works his way into the top five come next year.

17. Noah Parcher (La Crosse Central)

How point guards manage talent is always a determining factor of their value. Few have a tougher job or do that better in the state of Wisconsin than Parcher.

Playing alongside three Division 1 players and four last season, Parcher has La Crosse Central at 11-1. Not only are Johnny Davis, Jordan Davis, and Terrance Thompson averaging in double figures, so is Parcher. The junior floor general is putting up just over 12 points per game, while still managing to keep this high octane offense clicking.

One of the most underrated prospects in the Badger State, Parcher is terrific in the open floor. He’s not the most athletic kid, but makes up for it with a high IQ. When Parcher puts the ball on the deck, it’s with a purpose. He loves to draw and dish and is also exceptional at attacking the rim, absorbing contact, and making difficult shots look easy.

Division 2 programs should be all over this one in the coming year.

21. Will Pytleski (Green Bay Southwest)

A mismatch problem, Pytleski can play a variety of positions and score from all over the floor.

Currently averaging 13 points, eight rebounds, and two assists per game, Pytleski does a little bit of everything. Also a standout football player, Pytleski puts that toughness to use on the hardwood.

A player who can stretch the floor with his shooting, face-up from mid-range, and play with his back to the basket, Pytleski is a tough matchup. He doesn’t shy away from doing the dirty work either. Pytleski loves to stick his nose in amongst the trees, battle for rebounds, and compete for loose balls.

31. Donneil Gray (Madison LaFollette)

Gray only goes about 5-foot-8, but packs a lot of game into his small stature.

Currently averaging better than 17 points per game as a junior, Gray is a big reason why LaFollette finds themselves in the hunt for the Big Eight crown with powers Madison Memorial and Sun Prairie. Despite being undersized as a combo guard, Gray finds different ways to score the basketball. He’s a smooth ball handler that can create separation and often is fazed by a hand in his face.

Gray has an excellent feel for the game. While he can create a lot of looks for himself off the dribble, Gray can be unselfish. If he’s not the one making the assist, Gray often made the pass that led to it or had his hand in the play in some form or another.