ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Top talent returns to the Mike Miller Classic

One of the main attractions to the Mike Miller Classic each year is the high school talent that is bound to play collegiate basketball. Starting today at the Corn Palace and continuing at both the Palace and the Sanford Pentagon on Tuesday, there...

One of the main attractions to the Mike Miller Classic each year is the high school talent that is bound to play collegiate basketball.

Starting today at the Corn Palace and continuing at both the Palace and the Sanford Pentagon on Tuesday, there should be no shortage of basketball prowess on the floor. Fifteen high schools will take the court over the two days and the Classic is one of the few in South Dakota that primarily features out of state talent.

Each year also brings back to mind the talent has graced the Classic previously. Anthony Bennett, Joel Embiid, Reid Travis, Kelly Oubre, Brandon Ashley and Cheick Diallo are some of the notable alumni that have played in the Mike Miller Classic and at the Corn Palace.

Here's a look at some of the high school top talent that will be part of this year's Classic:

P.J. Washington - Findlay Prep

ADVERTISEMENT

A 6-foot-8, 215-pound junior for the Nevada-based powerhouse, Washington is the latest in the line of top talent for Findlay. He's ranked 15th by ESPN.com's listing of recruits for the class of 2017. Long and skilled around the basket, Washington has the potential to be an accomplished scorer. He averaged 10 points and seven rebounds a year ago and is already averaging 17 points per game and nine rebounds this season in 13 games.

As for his college recruitment, just last week, he narrowed his list of schools down to 13 and they include all of the bluebloods of college basketball: Arizona, California, Texas, Kentucky, Michigan State, UCLA, Florida, North Carolina, Michigan and Memphis. Of those, he recently told Scout.com that Texas, Cal and UCLA are recruiting him hardest.

Markus Howard - Findlay Prep

Howard, who transferred to Findlay Prep from Arizona's Perry High School, has made an early impact for the Pilots. He's the team's leading scorer through 13 games, with 19.8 points per contest, along with three rebounds and three assists per game. The junior is shooting 52 percent on field goals and 48 percent on three-point tries.

Before joining the Pilots this season, the 5-foot-11 guard was a two-time all-Arizona selection and averaged 32.4 points per game as a sophomore. He also helped the United States win a gold medal this past summer at the under-16 world championships in Argentina. In five games, he averaged 15 points, two assists and two steals.

Howard decommitted from Arizona State earlier this year and since he's opened things up again, the scholarship offers have continued to stack up from Arizona, California, Connecticut, Indiana, Memphis, Oregon, San Diego State, Utah and Wichita State.

Goanar Mar - DeLaSalle (Minn.)

The Islanders are also Mike Miller Classic regulars and as the four-time Minnesota state champions return again to South Dakota this week, they will lean on their 6-foot-7 junior forward.

ADVERTISEMENT

With a skill set that is still growing, Mar is long and rangy with his arms and can pose an inside presence on defense, while showing an ability to get to the rim on offense.

He reportedly has offers from DePaul, Iowa State, Nebraska, Northern Iowa, Toledo and Xavier, with a host of other Midwestern schools showing interest.

Tony Miller - Woodinville (Wash.)

It's fitting that a player with the surname "Miller" makes the list for the Classic. A 6-foot-6 small forward, Miller has brought Woodinville back from being a losing program and averaged 23 points and 11 rebounds as a junior a season ago. Now as a senior, he has the Falcons off to a strong start in 2015-16 with a 6-2 record.

Miller has recruiting interest from Oregon State, Washington and Washington State, along with Montana, Portland and St. Mary's (Calif.).

Majok Kur - Mitchell Christian

After a strong season as a junior, Kur's profile has continued to rise in recruiting circles and the Mike Miller Classic will provide another platform for his game to be witnessed.

He has great agility considering his 6-foot-10 frame and is a defensive force in the paint. His offensive play in the post continues to develop, making him an attractive player at the college level.

ADVERTISEMENT

Kur reportedly has interest among Division I schools in the region after spending the last summer playing for the Dakota Schoolers. He's scored 22 and 27 points in the first two contests of the season for Golden Eagles.

Related Topics: CORN PALACE
Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
What To Read Next
Prep basketball action from around the state for Friday, Jan. 27.
Stevens opened the third quarter on an 8-0 run, erasing the 25-24 advantage the Kernels held at half. The Raiders never gave the lead back.
Members Only
Rapid City Stevens defeats the Mitchell Kernels 56-37.
“Women’s athletics at South Dakota State has always been valued and supported,” SDSU women's basketball coach Aaron Johnston said. “We’re lucky to have people that invest in women’s athletics here.”