Is this going to the greatest season ever for boys’ and girls’ basketball in Minnesota?
At Minnehaha Academy, the players know (and almost everyone else who is aware of the boys’ basketball team) know that the Redhawks are likely the best high school team ever to play in Minnesota.
“Without a doubt,” said Jalen Suggs, the point guard who is among the top recruits nationwide among this year’s seniors. “With all of the pieces we’ve got and the growth we can do, I don’t see how we can not be.”
Minnehaha Academy, located in southeast Minneapolis, will be going after its fourth straight state title this season and is more than merely Suggs’ team. The center, 7-foot Chet Holmgren, known as the “Slim Reaper” owing to his still-developing frame, is the No. 4 prospect in the Class of 2021, according to one scouting service.
And there are a half-dozen other players whom other schools would envy.
In addition to facing many of the area’s top teams, the Redhawks will play host to Sierra Canyon, Calif., on Jan. 4, a game that will be on ESPN and against an opponent that features the sons of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.
Jim Paulsen’s story about the team goes deep on its depth, and tells you about the one person who isn’t yet ready to commit to the accolades being directed toward Minnehaha.
Meanwhile, the Hopkins girls’ team is lead by Paige Bueckers, the outstanding five-year starter who has commited to the University of Connecticut, and includes four players, including a ninth-grader, who have already been offered scholarships by the Gophers.
Hopkins has a 150-9 record over the last five seasons, which includes two Class 4A state titles and three second-place finishes. This year’s team is ranked third in the nation by USA Today.
“We are striving for perfection, every practice and every game,” coach Brian Cosgriff said. “I feel the pressure. I’m competitive, and want us to be great.”
So is this the best girls’ team in state history? Cosgriff won’t go there.
“It might be a better conversation at the end of the season,” he said.
You can read Ron Haggstrom’s story about the Hopkins girls here.
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