In the age of social media, the sports world starts tracking young athletes carer as early as middle school.
Youtube videos, highlight montages, and social media make it all possible. That was the case for Zion Williamson who panned out to be as good as advertised as it is now the case for 15 year-old Emoni Bates of Michigan.
Bates who’s set to graduate from high school in 2022 may be one of the first from benefit from the NBA’s plan to abolish the one and done rule and to again allow high school players go straight to the NBA.
That got ESPN thinking which high school prospects since LeBron James took the world by storm were the best.
On their list is one former Wildcat and a second John Calipari product who played his college ball at Memphis. Here’s the list.
1. Kevin Durant, Montrose Christian School. Rockville, Maryland
2. Greg Oden, Lawrence North High School. Indianapolis Indiana
T3. Derrick Rose, Simeon Carer Academy. Chicago, Illinois
T3. Emoni Bates, Lincoln High School. Ypsilanti, Michigan
T3. Anthony Davis, Perspectives Charter School. Chicago, Illinois
6. Ben Simmons, Montverde Academy. Montverde, Florida
7. Dwight Howard. Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy, Atlanta, Georgia
Davis was the lone Kentucky Wildcat on the list. He was the top prospect on the 2011 ESPN 100, picking Kentucky over North Carolina, Syracuse and Ohio State.
Rose played for Calipari at Memphis and was ranked the 5th best prospect on the 2006 ESPN 100.
For more on Bates read here with your ESPN insider account.