NYC boys basketball power rankings: Preseason
No. 1 Christ the King
UConn-bound Omar Calhoun could become the Royals all-time leading scorer come March and the junior trio of Isaiah Lewis, Jon Severe and Jordan Fuchs return for the two-time defending CHSAA Class AA champions.
No. 2 St. Raymond
With Daniel Dingle (Temple), Kerwin Okoro (Iowa State), junior Shane Rector and seniors Myron Hickman and Larry Graves back, the Ravens are poised to take that next step to Fordham’s Rose Hill Gym after back-to-back semifinal losses.
No. 3 Lincoln
Six-foot-4 guard Isaiah Whitehead is one of the top players in the Class of 2014 and the lone returning starter for the Railsplitters. That’s just fine because transfers Tafari Whittingham, Dashawn Suber and Travis Charles are supplying experience and height.
No. 4 Boys & Girls
Leroy (Truck) Fludd, a 6-foot-4 physical specimen is joined by Bishop Loughlin transfers Joel Angus and Tyliek Kimbrough on a Kangaroos club looking to win a third straight PSAL Class AA title at Madison Square Garden.
No. 5 South Shore
Everyone is back for the Vikings, including the talented junior tandem of Terrence Samuel and Shamiek Sheppard, from a team that fell to Boys & Girls in the PSAL Class AA quarterfinals a year ago.
No. 6 Cardinal Hayes
Fairfield-bound Amadou Sidibe and Jalen Jenkins are two of the most talented post players in the city. They have plenty of backcourt help this year with the addition of Rice transfers Tyler Williams, Naasir Williams, Chris Robinson and Shavar Newkirk as the Cardinals look to make noise in the CHSAA ‘AA’ this year.
No. 7 Thomas Jefferson
Thaddeus Hall might be the only recognizable name and experienced player for the Orange Wave, which failed to live up to last year’s lofty preseason expectations. Jaylen Evans, Jaquan Lynch, Pat Brown and Mike Robinson hope to be making some noise come March.
No. 8 Cardozo
Jermaine Lawrence, a spectacular 6-foot-9 junior, is one of the top players in the city and a known commodity. Ryan Yearwood, a 6-foot-7 transfer from St. John’s Prep, was under-the-radar a year ago. The Judges have plenty of height and talent inside.
No. 9 Xaverian
The backcourt of SMU-bound sharpshooter Brian Bernardi and gritty point guard Dillon Burns, who will head to C.W. Post, return for the Clippers, but coach Jack Alesi said the team’s season hinges on the play of 6-foot-4 swingman Shakeel Kemp.
No. 10 Holy Cross
There’s no shortage of experienced guard at Holy Cross with Will Davis, Marquise Moore and Anthony Libroia back from a squad that pushed Rice to the brink in the CHSAA Class AA semifinals a year ago.
No. 11 Wings
Justin Jenkins and Steven Gomez return for a Wings team that reached the PSAL Class AA semifinals a year ago, but there’s plenty of question marks after that. Coach Bill Turnage is looking for some consistency and hopes to rely on guys like juniors Marvilio Berroa and Jaquan Brown.
No. 12 Mount St. Michael
The defending CHSAA ‘A’ champions take a jump up in class, but do so without leading scorer Peter Aguilar, who is now at Long Island University. However, gritty and strong point guard Malik Gill, sharpshooting Anthony Maestre and rebounding machine Omari Manhertz return for the Mountaineers.
No. 13 Curtis
The Warriors have experience and size with three-year starters Dashawn Richmond and Dontay Jackson, as well as senior forward Debonair Edwards and Kevin McIntosh. But the best of the bunch just might be 6-foot-6 lefty Hassan Martin, who has a tremendous motor and shot-blocking skills.
No. 14 John F. Kennedy
Longtime Knights coach Johnny Mathis has size, depth and versatility with 6-foot-5 sophomore Badih Ahmed, 6-foot-6 junior Terry Lanier, 6-foot-6 senior Alfonso Davis, 6-foot-3 Jason Nunez, whose brother Angel is a freshman at Louisville, and 6-foot-3 Louis Baltazar.
No. 15 Bishop Loughlin
The focus isn’t on the players who transferred to Lincoln and Boys & Girls, but rather on the team that remains, including talented sophomores Khadeen Carrington, Elisha Boone and Devin Wilson, who all saw ample playing time a year ago for the young Lions.