The FHSAA boys basketball season is just around the corner. Practices started this week with preseason games to be played in a week’s time and the regular season tipping off on Nov. 23.
We will be looking at the top players to watch in all seven classes.
Here is a peek at the top prospects to keep an eye on in Class 6A (Districts 1-8).
Players To Watch By Class: 7A (Districts 1-8)
Players To Watch By Class: 7A (Districts 9-16)
2019-20 state champion: Bartow
Region 1 - District 1
Jordan Williams (Tate)
Tate posted a 21-6 record in 2019-20 losing to a senior-heavy Milton squad 49-48 in the district final. Williams, a 2021 6-0 combo guard returns after posting 12 games in double digits and averaging close to 10 PPG. He is a good attacker and someone who will be tasked to carry the load for this new look Tate squad.
Obian HowarObianHowar5'8" | PGCrestview | 2023FL
d & Caleb KyzeCalebKyze5'9" | PGCrestview | 2023FL
Fresh off a state title in 2018-19, Crestview graduated nearly its entire team and had to start rebuilding. Two 2023 prospects emerged in the lost season between Howard and Kyzer. Howard, a 5-8 guard is back as the leading scorer (9.1 PPG) and his pure speed on both ends of the floor is dangerous. Kyzer, a 5-9 guard was a consistent double-digit scorer as the season moved forward. Both sophomore guards will have to shoot better from long range, but they should build off of last season’s play.
Other names to know: 2022 F Elton Winston (Crestview), 2021 F Skyler BryantSkylerBryant6'3" | PFWest Florida | 2021StateFL
(Tate), 2021 G Keishawn Qualls (Tate), 2022 F Brandon Thrasher (Milton), 2023 F Nathan Wright (Milton), 2021 F Tim Brewer (Navarre), 2021 G Adrian Carter (Navarre), 2021 G Troy Delima (Pace), 2021 G Logan Donahoe (Pace) and 2021 G Kendell Mosley (Niceville).
Region 1 - District 2
Tajden DavisTajdenDavis6'3" | CGChiles | 2022StateFL
& Marvis Thornton (Chiles)
Entering his third season as a varsity starter, Davis continues to average double digits in points (2019-20 - 13.4). He had some huge games including 28 points against Florida High and 20 points against state final four squad Columbia. The 2022 6-3 guard is a mature leader and athletic piece. Alongside him is Thornton, a 2021 6-5 forward who took a big step forward last season as he averaged 10.1 PPG and 6.1 RPG. He will be tasked to do the tough work down low once again as a senior.
Marcus PetersonMarcusPeterson6'3" | SFColumbia | 2022StateFL
& Charleston PondsCharlestonPonds6'3" | CGColumbia | 2021StateFL
Columbia made a memorable run to the state final four this past season taking runner-up Dillard to double overtime. Peterson, a 2022 6-3 forward returns as the lead piece. He was a flat out beast on the boards with 10 games with double digits which included a 23-point, 20-rebound performance against Eustis. Ponds, a 2021 6-4 forward came off the bench as a key rotational helper and he should settle into a full-time role and flourish now.
Justus WilburnJustusWilburn6'3" | CGGainesville | 2021StateFL
& Daryus Boyd (Gainesville)
A true two-way guard, Wilburn is a fierce competitor at 6-2 and someone who is a true leader for Gainesville. The 2021 guard will be running this offense and he will do it with plenty of aggression on both ends of the floor. Alongside him is Boyd, a 2022 6-3 forward who had some breakout outings as a sophomore. He is a tough inside slasher and a player who battles on the glass.
Jaylen AustonJaylenAuston6'3" | CGLincoln | 2022StateFL
& Bryce CummingsBryceCummings6'3" | CGLincoln | 2022StateFL
Lincoln always has athletes in place and this 2022 duo is up next. Auston, a 6-3 guard has an all-around game and was a varsity starter as a sophomore. He should be asked to do plenty for this new look group. Fellow 2022 forward, Cummings is a talented athlete who got his feet wet on varsity a bit last season. The 6-2 tweener was the best JV player in the program.
Other names to know: 2021 F Daniel CampbellDanielCampbell6'3" | PFLeon | 2021StateFL
(Leon), 022 F Jalen Jerkins (Buchholz), 2023 G Creed Whittemore (Buchholz), 2022 G Coulson Orth (Buchholz), 2021 G Jordan Guthrie (Chiles), 2023 G Tray TolliveTrayTollive5'10" | PGColumbia | 2023FL
r (Columbia), 2021 G Dante Brown (Columbia), 2022 G Alex McCray (Gainesville), 2021 G Josh Graham (Gainesville), 2021 G Ethan Glover (Leon), 2021 F Anthony Crowe (Leon), 2022 G Joshua Robertson (Lincoln), 2022 F Ashton SalinasAshtonSalinas6'5" | PFLincoln | 2022StateFL
(Lincoln), 2022 F Perry Fisher (Lincoln)
Region 1 - District 3
Zyhir SimsZyhirSims6'0" | CGFletcher | 2021StateFL
& Lajae JonesLajaeJones6'3" | PGFletcher | 2022StateFL
Sims was locked in while averaging 20.1 PPG as a junior which included 15 games with 20 or more points and a season-best of 36 points. The 6-2 guard is a speedy guard and a gifted scorer. Sims will look to have a banner senior campaign at Fletcher and I fully expect him to flourish. Alongside him is Jones, a 2022 6-3 forward, who averaged 13.0 PPG last season. He is a perfect compliment for Sims as he gets going inside and fights for his points and boards. 2023 6-6 forward Marquis GheeMarquisGhee6'6" | PFFletcher | 2023StateFL
is another name to keep a close eye on in the terms of his progression.
Ahman GreenidgeAhmanGreenidge6'4" | SFFleming Island | 2022StateFL
& Antoine SandyAntoineSandy6'3" | CGFleming Island | 2022StateFL
Fleming Island graduated a slew of talent from the past two seasons and now it is time for Greenidge, a 6-4 forward to take his step forward. He showed flashes last season and the strong and physical athlete is in line for heavy minutes this fall. Joining him as a nice counterpart is Sandy, a 2022 6-2 guard/forward who transferred in from Oakleaf. He is a gifted scorer and ballhandler.
Other names to know: 2021 F Alim Denson (Atlantic Coast), 2022 G Anthony RossAnthonyRoss6'0" | SGMarathon | 2022StateFL
(Atlantic Coast), 2024 G Chris AriasChrisArias6'4" | SFCreekside | 2024FL
(Creekside), 2022 G Caleb LylesCalebLyles6'2" | CGCreekside | 2022StateFL
(Creekside), 2023 F Jared Myers (Creekside), 2021 F Ethan Miller (Creekside), 2023 F Koron HaywardKoronHayward6'4" | SFEnglewood | 2023StateFL
(Englewood), 2021 G Christopher Washington (Englewood), 2023 F Rico SokRicoSok6'4" | SFEnglewood | 2023StateFL
(Englewood), 2021 F Dekembay Carn (First Coast), 2022 G Jeremiah Waldburg (First Coast), 2021 G Jevon Heggs (Fletcher), 2021 F Anthony Cardona (Fletcher) and 2021 F Nick Mas (Fleming Island).
Region 1 - District 4
Brenen LorientBrenenLorient6'7" | PFForest | 2022StateFL
Emerging last season and building that confidence into the summer, Lorient has been on the fast track. The 2022 6-8 forward is a dangerous athlete who can really hurt you grinding down inside offensively. On defense, he simply moves guys and stonewalls them with blocks. He is coming along as a ballhandler and has a nice mid-range jumper. Illinois Chicago, Stetson and FGCU have offered Lorient and I expect many more schools to jump aboard. Alongside him our the Russell twins in the class of 2022, Elijah is a 6-8 forward who pairs well down low and Jeremiah is a 6-5 forward who can handle the rock and provide defensive prowess.
Quantary RobersonQuantaryRoberson5'10" | PGWekiva | 2021StateFL
A very underrated athlete, Roberson always plays poised and with a chip on his shoulder. At 5-10, the 2021 guard is a seasoned leader and someone who will have a major senior season for an improved Wekiva program. 2021 6-4 forward Donavon Stokes is a nice attacker and defender while 2023 6-3 guard Carey DavisCareyDavis6'3" | CGWekiva | 2023StateFL
will provide a ton of energy and strength on both ends of the floor.
Other names to know: 2021 G Josh CuspardJoshCuspard6'3" | PGForest | 2021StateFL
(Forest), 2021 F Ty’Rion DensonTy’RionDenson6'7" | PFMainland | 2021StateFL
(Mainland), 2021 G Kyle Bowman (Mainland), 2023 G Dontrell Thompson (Mainland), 2021 G Jalen WillisJalenWillis5'10" | PGMainland | 2021StateFL
(Mainland), 2022 G Frank BellissimoFrankBellissimo6'0" | CGNew Smyrna Beach | 2022StateFL
(New Smyrna Beach), 2021 F Carter Cook (New Smryna Beach), 2022 F Ryan Weeks (New Smyrna Beach), 2021 F Adon Jones (New Smyrna Beach), 2021 G Ryan Andrews (South Lake), 2021 G Isaiah Laster (Wekiva), 2022 G Jamarric Hammond (Wekiva) and 2021 G Angel Rivera (Winter Springs).
Region 2 - District 5
Avery Keith & James GoffiganJamesGoffigan6'2" | CGViera | 2021StateFL
Viera has a fierce unit led by two versatile guards. Keith, a 2022 6-1 guard doesn’t back down from anyone and is super confident running an offense. His shot is very smooth as well. Goffigan, a 2022 6-2 guard will continue to be leaned upon to attack the basket and simply fly in transition ball.
Lorenzo HarrisonLorenzoHarrison6'4" | PFMelbourne | 2021StateFL
Harrison is a 2021 6-4 forward who has improved his game a lot this past year. Melbourne will feed him the ball inside and ask him to handle the offense as well with his versatility and raw athletic strength.
Other names to know: 2021 F Manyaka Luma (Viera), 2022 F Zavien Mitchell (Viera), 2022 G Jalen MorelandJalenMoreland6'3" | CGRockledge | 2022StateFL
(Viera), 2022 G Qmari PhillipsQmariPhillips6'0" | CGWest Oaks | 2022StateFL
(Viera), 2022 F John Starling (East River), 2021 G Austin Tyree (East River), 2021 F Tyrell Frederick (St. Cloud), 2021 F Christian Cervantes (St. Cloud), 2021 G Daniel Santos (Harmony), 2022 F Carlin Gelin (Melbourne) and 2021 G Caleb Lamb (Melbourne).
Region 2 - District 6
Walter ClaytonWalterClayton6'3" | PGBartow | 2021State#218NationFL
There aren’t many better players in the entire state than Clayton. The 2021 6-3 guard facilitated a Bartow team to a state title a season ago, going 31-1 on the season and simply doing everything as a passer and clutch scorer. Clayton is a high IQ guard who will do wonders at the next level at Iona.
...Alongside him are two familiar 2021 pieces in 6-4 forward Amarion FrazierAmarionFrazier6'2" | PGBartow | 2021StateFL
and 5-11 guard Tyrone SmithTyroneSmith5'8" | SGBartow | 2021StateFL
, both are key to the success on both ends of the floor. 2023 6-2 guard Kjei ParkerKjeiParker6'1" | CGBartow | 2023StateFL
transferred in from Kathleen and will be a nice scoring compliment to Clayton while 2021 5-11 guard Malcolm DewberryMalcolmDewberry5'11" | CGBartow | 2021StateFL
(transfer from Avon Park) who will give Clayton plenty of rest off the ball at times. Bartow is even deeper than last season’s state championship squad in my opinion.
Rolijah HardyRolijahHardy6'0" | CGWinter Haven | 2023StateFL
& Tyler WilliamsTylerWilliams5'11" | CGCape Coral | 2022StateFL
Find me a more athletic 2023 guard duo than what Winter Haven has in Hardy and Williams. Hardy, a 6-0 guard is a strong and determined guard who can flat out shoot and get inside for a variety of finishes. Williams, a 6-4 guard is blazing fast and not afraid to mix it up on both sides of the ball.
Patrick KanyamuhandaPatrickKanyamuhanda6'2" | CGEdgewater | 2021StateFL
& Jaylen SmithJaylenSmith5'11" | PGEdgewater | 2023StateFL
Edgewater will be relevant once again with some nice guard play. Kanyamuhanda, a 2021 6-2 guard is a very talented outside shooter and Smith, a 2023 5-11 guard transferred in from Windermere Prep and is a freakish athlete who is fast and can jump out of the gym.
Other names to know: 2021 F Daithan DavisDaithanDavis6'5" | PFBartow | 2021StateFL
(Bartow), 2021 G Alex VigoAlexVigo6'0" | CGBartow | 2021StateFL
(Bartow), 2022 G Jordy LoweryJordyLowery5'8" | PGBartow | 2022StateFL
(Bartow), 2023 F Nehemiah TurnerNehemiahTurner6'7" | PFBartow | 2023StateFL
(Bartow), 2022 F Jaiden WynnJaidenWynn6'5" | PFBartow | 2022StateFL
(Bartow), 2021 F Ja’Mariyus Pringle (Edgewater), 2021 G Tre Simmons (Edgewater), 2023 G Torian Roberts (Lake Howell), 2022 F Micah Thompson (Liberty), 2022 G RJ MorganRJMorgan6'0" | SGPoinciana | 2022StateFL
(Poinciana), 2021 G Manuel Centeno (Poinciana), 2024 G Jamie PhillipsJamiePhillips6'2" | CGWinter Haven | 2024FL
(Winter Haven), 2024 G Derajah HardyDerajahHardy6'0" | PGWinter Haven | 2024FL
(Winter Haven) and 2021 G Vintrell MooreVintrellMoore6'1" | CGWinter Haven | 2021StateFL
Region 2 - District 7
Marcellus ThomasMarcellusThomas6'4" | CGKathleen | 2021StateFL
The focus will be on Thomas at Kathleen. The 2021 6-3 guard moves into the alpha role and he looks ready to thrive with his natural athleticness and ability to break down defenses. Expect Thomas to have a very nice senior season.
Andrew StricklandAndrewStrickland6'2" | PGLakeland | 2022StateFL
A very good shooter in Polk County, Strickland is also a very reliable ballhandler and offensive leader. The 2022 6-2 guard should be a calming presence all year long for this young Lakeland squad.
Jasiah TaylorJasiahTaylor5'10" | SGJesuit | 2022StateFL
Coming over from Jesuit, Taylor is a 2021 5-10 guard who is already settling in nicely at Strawberry Crest. He is scrappy as an undersized rebounder and certainly thrives as an attacker and outside touch shooter.
Other names to know: 2021 G Aiden Tulloch (Armwood), 2021 F Stephon Martin (Armwood), 2021 F Jairus Randall (George Jenkins), 2022 F Andrae Shaw (Kathleen), 2021 G Tayler Gant (Lakeland), 2021 G Naqwayvviez Glover (Lakeland), 2023 F Kale ElmhorstKaleElmhorst6'4" | SFLakeland | 2023StateFL
(Lakeland), 2021 F AnDrew WaldenDrewWalden6'5" | PFPlant City | 2021StateFL
(Plant City), 2021 G Toddreon Miller (Plant City), 2021 F Ezereke Dawson (Plant City), 2022 G Dougie Blackwood (Strawberry Crest) and 2023 G Kevin Canady (Strawberry Crest).
Region 2 - District 8
Jalen GallmanJalenGallman6'0" | CGBloomingdale | 2021StateFL
With a true combination of speed and strength, Gallman is the heart and soul of this Bloomingdale team. The 2021 6-1 guard is a talented driver and someone who provides plenty of energy all over the court.
Jalen HarrisJalenHarris5'11" | CGHillsborough | 2021StateFL
Hillsborough just graduated yet another deep class of top scorers, but next in line is Harris, a 2021 5-11 guard who averaged 12.4 PPG as a junior. He came along nicely averaging nearly 16.0 PPG over the final 10 games of the season which included a 22-point performance against Bartow in the region semifinal. He’s a lead guard with a smooth jumper.
Henry HughesHenryHughes6'5" | PFTampa Bay Tech | 2021StateFL
& Jimmie Huff (Tampa Bay Tech)
2021 duo Hughes and Huff will be asked to do a lot for Tampa Bay Tech this season. Hughes, a 6-6 forward is a true interior presence while Huff, a 6-1 guard is a locked-in ballhandler and attacker.
Other names to know: 2021 G Damaury Milka (Bloomingdale), 2022 G Rudoplh HayesRudoplhHayes5'6" | PGBloomingdale | 2022StateFL
(Bloomingdale), 2024 F Jaelyn Thurman (Bloomingdale), 2021 G Jashon Reid (Brandon), 2021 G Jalen Crump (East Bay), 2022 F Justin Anderson (Hillsborough), 2021 G Corey Reynolds (Hillsborough), 2023 G John ZieglerJohnZiegler5'11" | PGKing | 2023StateFL
(King), 2023 F Antrevious MonroAntreviousMonro6'3" | SFKing | 2023FL
e (King), 2022 G Kenney Girard (King), 2021 G Gerald Mena (Leto) and 2021 F Zion GreenZionGreen6'2" | PFTampa Bay Tech | 2021StateFL
(Tampa Bay Tech).