Treyton Thompson (Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press)
It’s not exactly a flow, and may never be, but the number of highly regarded Minnesota high school-age basketball players who are leaving to play at prep schools across the country has gone from an occasional drip to a steady trickle.
The Alexandra Echo Press reported Tuesday that Treyton Thompson, an athletic, long-armed 6-11 power forward who would be a junior at Alexandria High School this year, will instead enroll this fall at La Lumiere School, a basketball-focused prep school in La Porte, Ind.
Thompson is the No. 3-ranked basketball prospect from Minnesota in the Class of 2021. He's the second player from that class to abandon the Minnesota prep basketball scene to chase a hoops-centric existence at a nationally prominent prep school.
Last month East Ridge junior-to-be Kendall Brown, ranked No. 2 in the Class of 2021, announced he was leaving for Sunrise Christian Academy in Kansas.
Only Minnehaha Academy’s Chet Holmgren, the 7-foot center who recently went viral with a behind-the-back dribble, drive and dunk on Steph Curry, is left in the state among next year’s top three.
Thompson averaged 15.8 points and 8.5 rebounds per game for Alexandria last winter. He told the newspaper that La Lumiere, which spent much of the 2018-19 season ranked No. 1 in the nation by USA Today before losing to IMG Academy (Fla.) in the Geico Nationals Championship game in April, contacted him “about a month ago” and asked him to come for a visit.
Obviously, he was impressed, drawn by the school, the basketball and an apparent love of PB&J.
“[La Lumiere’s] got everything I want,” Thompson told Eric Morken of the Echo Press. “They have an awesome weight program. They have one-on-one weight training. They have all you can eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, so that’s going to be awesome. They were ranked No. 1 in the nation last year, so I’ll be going into a really good program, and that’s what I want to do.”
Thompson’s profile rose significantly during summer while playing with the Howard Pulley AAU program. To date, he’s received Division I college offers from Minnesota, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Texas Tech.
“Playing against top-level kids all the time is just going to make my IQ higher,” he told the Echo Press. “It’s going to get me more ready for the next AAU season so I can maybe pick up some more offers.”
Thompson and Brown are just the latest Minnesota prep players to leave home to play at prep schools.
Before last season, Blaise Beauchamp, a sharp-shooting guard from Hopkins, went to Findlay Prep in Las Vegas and will spend this season, his senior year, at Dream City Christian in Glendale, AZ. Minnehaha Academy’s Terry Lockett spent his junior year playing at Spire Academy in suburban Cleveland. Lockett, who is also a Divison I football recruit, has since returned to Minneapolis and is expected back at Minnehaha Academy this fall.
Minnesota joined the prep school parade this past year with creation of Minnesota Preparatory Academy, which was started by former local basketball player Lucas Patterson and features a potential DI recruit in Patterson’s son, LuCye, who will be a senior this year.