David Goricki of The Detroit News selects the top boys basketball players in the state.
David DeJulius, 6-0, Sr., G, Detroit East English
DeJulius showed his ability to carry his team to victories when he scored 17 fourth-quarter points in a comeback win over two-time Class A state champion Clarkston, then scored 49, making nine 3-pointers two weeks later in a win over defending Illinois state champion Chicago Orr. He averaged 26 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, shooting 42 percent from 3-point range. “He was always trying to get better, always listened and was very coachable,” Coach Juan Rickman said. “He could score the ball, his ball-handling got better and he was able to read defenses, leading him to take the ball to the basket, find an open teammate or make a 3-pointer.” DeJulius will play at Michigan.
Foster Loyer, 6-0, Sr., G, Clarkston
Loyer earned the title of Mr. Basketball. He averaged 26.6 points and six assists and took his game to the next level on the biggest stage – while playing with a knee injury suffered during the final week of the regular season - scoring 82 in the Class A Final Four at the Breslin Center, including 40 in a title game win over Holland West Ottawa to make Clarkston a two-time state champion. “This kid works his butt off every day, never goes a day without getting his shots in and he’s always thinking of other ways to improve,” Coach Dan Fife said. Loyer will play at Michigan State.
Brandon Johns, 6-8, Sr., F, East Lansing
Johns averaged 26 points and 10.1 rebounds, shooting 61 percent from the field to help East Lansing reach the Class A state quarterfinals. “Over four years at East Lansing Brandon has improved in every single area,” said former East Lansing coach Steve Finamore who coached Johns for the majority of his career. “His focus and intensity has been two of the biggest improvements. He’s turned himself into a really good outside shooter by spending a lot of time in the gym.” Johns will play at Michigan.
Carlos “Scooby” Johnson, 6-6, So., Benton Harbor
Johnson displayed his big-play ability by making the winning 3-pointer in the Class B state championship game overtime win over Grand Rapids Catholic Central, contributing 24 points and 11 rebounds to help hand Benton Harbor its first state title since 1965. He averaged 19 points, 13.9 rebounds and two blocks, shooting 51 percent from the field. “Carlos can play all five positions and is a student of the game,” Coach Corey Sterling said. “He increased his leaping ability by hitting the steps. He has the rare killer instinct for a 15-year-old and has been able to take over a game with his playmaking ability, passing and shooting.” Johnson has already received multiple offers, including Oakland, Princeton and Detroit.
Romeo Weems, 6-7, Jr., G-F, New Haven
Weems led New Haven to a 52-game winning streak, including a Class B state title a year ago, before a state semifinal loss to Grand Rapids Catholic Central. He averaged 23.5 points, 10.8 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 4.8 steals and 2.1 blocks. He had a quadruple double (21 points, 16 rebounds, 12 assists, 10 steals), along with seven blocks in a regional final win over Detroit Country Day. “What makes Romeo a special player is his IQ of the game of basketball and his versatility,” Coach Tedaro France said. “He is able to do so many things on the basketball court at his size. His great improvement in his 3-point shooting took his game to another level and made him and our team tough to defend.” Weems has offers from numerous national powers, including Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State.
Coach of the Year: Corey Sterling, Benton Harbor
Sterling guided Benton Harbor to its third Class B Final Four appearance in the last five years, but this time came away with its first state championship since 1965 when the Tigers defeated Grand Rapids Catholic Central in overtime in the Class B title bout at the Breslin Center. “This team had great character kids who loved and cared for each other,” Sterling said. “They played hard and kept fighting when facing adversity and it resulted in the school’s first state title since 1965 and we have a proud tradition in basketball here. A lot of these kids have been together since the second grade and we were fortunate to have four of them return to Benton Harbor (Devan Nichols and TJ Jones from Berrien Springs, Justin Brown and Chris Conway from Stevensville Lakeshore).”
- Tyler Bosma, 6-6, Sr., F, Holland West Ottawa: 17.2 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.6 blocks
- Gabe Brown, 6-7, Sr., F, Belleville: 18.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, 1.2 blocks (Michigan State)
- Traveon Maddox, 6-4, Sr., G, Novi: 20.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists (Oakland)
- Setric Millner, 6-6, Sr., F, Grand Rapids Christian:20.1 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists (Cleveland State)
- Brandon Wade, 6-2, Sr., G, Ann Arbor Skyline: 23.8 points, 6.9 assists, 4 rebounds, 3.5 steals (Duquesne)
Second team: Jordan Henry, 6-0, Sr., G, Okemos; Luke Hyde, 6-6, Sr., F, DeWitt; Ja’Kavien Lewis, 6-0, Sr., G, Flint Carman-Ainsworth; Carrington McCaskill, 6-8, Jr., G-F, Detroit Renaissance; Rashad Williams, 6-2, Sr., G, Wayne Memorial.
Third team: Lorne Bowman, 6-2, So., G, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s; Taylor Currie, 6-9, Sr., C, Clarkston; Daniel Friday, 6-3, Jr., G, U-D Jesuit; Sir’Real Smith, 6-0, So., G, Saginaw; Eonte Tornes, 5-10, Jr., G, Muskegon.
Fourth team: Chase Meredith, 6-7, Sr., C, Canton; C.J. Robinson, 5-10, Sr., G, Clarkston; Jalen Thomas, 6-10, Jr., C, U-D Jesuit; Chandler Turner, 6-6, Sr., G, Detroit Renaissance; Davion Williams, 6-2, Sr., G, Belleville.
Honorable mention: Jack Ammerman, Ann Arbor Skyline; Leon Ayers, Troy; Noah Baylis, Holly; Brian Booker, Saginaw Heritage; Jacob Boonyasith, Jenison; Carl Bow, Hazel Park; Maliq Carr, Oak Park; Elijah Collins, U-D Jesuit; Chris DeRocher, Alpena; Omari Duncan, Flint Carman Ainsworth; Cal Endicott, Flushing; Justin Fischer, Warren DeLaSalle; Justin Fox, Grand Rapids Union; Ashton Franklin, Waterford Mott; Jaylan Franklin, Gibraltar Carlson; De’Jon Gantz, Warren Mott; Tyler George, Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central; Marcus Gibbs, Detroit King; Randy Gilbert, Detroit Cass Tech; Maverick Gildyard, Sterling Heights Stevenson; Trendon Hankerson, Novi; Payton Harley, Wyoming; Tre Harvey, West Bloomfield; Ryan Hayes, Traverse City West; David Hearns, Hazel Park; Trey Jackson, Detroit Western; Troy Jordan, Holt; Danny Kolp, Petoskey; Justin Lary, East Kentwood; Avery Lewis, Isaiah Lewis, Wayne Memorial; Ann Arbor Huron; Jamie Lewis, Lake Orion; Drew Lowder, Ann Arbor Pioneer; Seth Mann, Petoskey; Antonio Marshall, Detroit King; Devin Marshall, Portage Northern; Gage McGuire, Coldwater; Blake McRae, Romeo; Jiovanni Miles, Novi; D’avion Moore, Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse; Donavan Moore, West Bloomfield; Josh Palo, Howell; Max Perez, Hudsonville; Devin Pettus, Hazel Park; Luke Pfromm, Warren DeLaSalle; Kasean Pryor, Ann Arbor Pioneer; Jonathan Robinson, Jackson; Ryan Rollins, Macomb Dakota; Tommy Schuster, Clinton Township Chippewa Valley; Tobin Schwannecke, Traverse City Central; Tariq Shepherd, Detroit East English; Vinson Sigmon, Canton; Jackarus Smith, Grand Blanc; Trent Summerfield, Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern; Mark Tocco, Macomb Dakota; Ryan Wade, Ann Arbor Skyline; Xavier Wade, Holland West Ottawa; Jarvis Walker, Muskegon Mona Shores; Marty Ward, East Grand Rapids; Joshua Warren, Woodhaven; B. Artis White, Canton; Reggie Williams, Saginaw Arthur Hill; Lewis Willis, Ann Arbor Huron; Mason Wojtusik, Mt. Pleasant; D’Lano Woods, Clinton Township Chippewa Valley.
- Marcus Bingham, 6-10, Sr., F, Grand Rapids Catholic Central: 16.6 points, 9.8 rebounds (Michigan State)
- Markeese Hastings, 6-7, Sr., F, Wyoming Godwin Heights: 22.3 points, 15.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 2.6 blocks (Butler)
- Mark “Rocket” Watts, 6-3, Jr., G, Detroit Old Redford: 26.8 points, 6 assists, 5.5 rebounds
- Trevion Williams, 6-8, Sr., F, Detroit Henry Ford Academy: 19.2 points, 17.2 rebounds, 2.3 blocks (Purdue)
- Mario Whitley, 6-5, Sr., G, Frankenmuth: 25 points, 10 rebounds, 4 steals (Saginaw Valley)
Second team: Charles Garrett, 6-3, Sr., G, Bridgeport; Cole Kleiver, 5-10, Sr., G, Williamston; Lamar Norman, 6-3, Sr., G, Wyoming Godwin Heights; Anthony Roberts, 6-2, Sr., G, Detroit Henry Ford; Luke Tolliver, 6-3, Sr., G, Paw Paw.
Third team: Bryce Drews, 6-4, Sr., F, Hillsdale; Wendell Green, 5-11, So., G, Detroit Country Day; Shawn Hopkins, 6-4, Sr., F, Benton Harbor; Isaiah Jackson, 6-9, So., C, Detroit Old Redford; Ashton Sherrell, 6-7, Sr., F, New Haven.
Fourth team: Quinn Blair, 6-6, Sr., G, Dearborn Divine Child; Zach Goodline, 5-10, Jr., G, Coloma; Nick Jungel, 6-7, Sr., C, Olivet; Jacob Polakovich, 6-8, Sr., C, Grand Rapids Catholic Central; Jayvien Torrance-Jackson, 6-1, Sr., G, River Rouge.
Honorable mention: Damon Anguiano, Alma; Deonte Balderas, Harrison; SirQuarius Ball, Bridgeport; Trevor Ballard, Milan; Elijah Baxter, Benton Harbor; Darrell Belcher, Grand Rapids Catholic Central; Austin Braun, Grand Rapids Catholic Central; Riley Bugg, North Branch; Cameryn Carpenter, Flint Powers Catholic; Braeden Childress, Big Rapids; Sean Cobb, Williamston; Nigel Colvin, River Rouge; Makai Conner, Flint Powers Catholic; Ben Davidson, St. Clair; Tyson Davis, Goodrich; Nick Dueweke, Pontiac Notre Dame Prep; E.J. Finch, Plainwell; Steele Fortress, Jackson Parma Western; Donavan Freeman, River Rouge; Mason Gardner, Boyne City; Markele Garrett, Bridgeport; Amier Gilmore, St. Clair Shores South Lake; Sam Gray, Frankenmuth; Antonio Green, Detroit Henry Ford; Brandon Green, Detroit Mumford; Thomas Griggs, Wyoming Kelloggsville; Tirrell Hausmanis, Three Rivers; Owen Irvin, Tawas; Ronald Jeffrey III, New Haven; Sam Johnson, Spring Lake; TJ Jones, Benton Harbor; Joshua Laman, Ludington; Logan LePage, Corunna; Terryon Liddell, Saginaw Swan Valley; Mitchell Mowid, Haslett; Devan Nichols, Benton Harbor; Justin Nicholas, Grayling; Carter Nyp, Wayland; Tavaras Oliver Jr., New Haven; Brandon Paul, Sault Ste, Marie; Jalen Rawls, Mt. Morris; Julian Roper, Detroit Country Day; Luke Schrotenboer, Grand Rapids South Christian; Logan Serba, Comstock Park; Tyler Smith, Clare; Brady Swinehart, Ionia; Thomas Teklergergis, Harrison; Carson Vincent, Ovid-Elsie; Tyler VanKovering, Hudsonville Unity Christian; Deontae Ulmer, Detroit Henry Ford; Sage Walker, Corunna; Solomon White, Ada Forest Hills Eastern; Torrell Williams, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood.
- CJ Haut, 6-8, Sr., C, Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central: 18.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2.5 steals (Air Force)
- Caleb Hodgson, 6-9, Jr., C, Dansville: 23 points, 14 rebounds, 3.7 blocks
- Pierre Mitchell, 6-1, Sr., G, Detroit Edison: 17.2 points, 5 assists, 3.5 rebounds (Central Michigan)
- Cade Peterson, 6-6, Sr., F, Maple City Glen Lake: 14.3 points, 9 rebounds
- Gary Solomon, 6-5, Sr., G, Detroit Edison: 16.9 points, 7.9 rebounds, 3.7 assists (LIU-Brooklyn)
Second team: Myron Gardner, 6-5, Jr., F, Detroit Loyola; Deante Johnson, 6-8, Sr., C, Detroit Edison; Carson Meulenberg, 6-6, Sr, F, Grand Rapids Covenant Christian; D’Juan Seal, 6-4, Sr., G, Detroit Pershing; Jalen Terry, 6-3, So., G, Flint Beecher.
Third team: Marcus Johnson, 5-10, So., G, Iron Mountain; Jordan Katje, 6-5, Sr., Kalamazoo Christian; Earnest Sanders, 6-3, So., G, Flint Beecher; Blake Verbeek, 6-10, Sr., F, Grandville Calvin Christian; Isaiah Williamson, 6-6, Sr., F, Unionville-Sebewaing.
Fourth team: Jalyn Benning, 6-6, Sr., F, Detroit Pershing; Austin Brown, 6-1, Jr., G, Madison Heights Madison; William Dunn, 6-8, So., C, Quincy; Joe Liedel, 5-9, So., G, Erie-Mason; Xander Okerlund, 6-4, Jr., G, Maple City Glen Lake.
Honorable mention: Ethan Ancick, Manton; Heath Baldwin, Kalamazoo Hackett; Trevor Boers, Capac; Hunter Bohn, Unionville-Sebewaing; Pierre Brooks, Detroit Douglass; Tyler Cammenga, Grand Rapids Covenant Christian; Jeffrey Carrier, Mason County Central; Logan Chilman, Beal City; Tyson Claeys, Johannesburg-Lewiston; Kobe Clark, Schoolcraft; Zac Clark, Britton-Deerfield; Kyle Colton, Whittemore-Prescott; Calvin Cook, Brown City; Johnny Davis, Detroit Pershing; Nolan Finkbeiner, Hemlock; Kiambu Gary, Cassopolis; Andrew Geiger, Brown City; Jonathan Giglio, Saginaw Valley Lutheran; Bryce George, Marlette; Harry Gilstrap, Bath; Noah Hague, Sand Creek; Reece Hazelton, Maple City Glen Lake; Ron Hill, Detroit Pershing; Hart Holmgren, Ishpeming; Grant Huebel, Oscoda; Tyrese Hunt-Thompson, Cassopolis; Keith Johnson, Detroit Edison; Nick Johnson, New Lothrop; Hunter Kegley, Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central; Dayton Keller, Jackson Lumen Christi; Luc Laketa, Hanover-Horton; TJ McKenzie, North Muskegon; Nate Minderhoud, Grand Rapids Covenant Christian; Danny Passinault, Traverse City St. Francis; Jayden Perry, Manton; Daniel Poole, East Jackson; Teddy Prichard, Traverse City St. Francis; TJ Raedy, Saginaw Nouvel; Connor Riley, Montabella; Gabe Robinson, Reese; Andrew Sams, Capac; Ryan Schafer, Beal City; Jordan Sherman, Homer; Tanner Shimel, Johannesburg-Lewiston; Sam Siepker, Madison Heights Bishop Foley; Cooper Smith, Kalamazoo Hackett; Justin Smith, Burton Atherton; Kyle Stockmeyer, Reese; Brian Taylor Jr., Detroit Edison; Tyler Welch, Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central.
- Harlond Beverly, 6-4, Jr., G, Southfield Christian:16 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists
- Austin Harris, 6-3, Sr., F, Buckley: 17 points, 4.8 assists
- Peter Kalthoff, 6-7, Sr., C, Hillsdale Academy: 21.9 points, 8.2 rebounds, 1.7 blocks
- Bryce Washington, 6-4, Sr., G, Southfield Christian: 21 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists
- Jake Witt, 6-7, Sr. F, Ewen Trout Creek: 27 points, 17 rebounds, 5 blocks (Michigan Tech)
Second team: Daniel Everhart, 6-1, Sr., G, Marine City Cardinal Mooney; Trey Helinski, 5-9, Sr., G, Adrian Lenawee Christian; Caleb Hunter, 5-10, Sr., G, Southfield Christian; Mason Pline, 6-6, Sr., F, Fowler; Devin Schmitz, 6-0, Sr., G, Dollar Bay
Third team: Jaden Janke, 6-5, Sr., C, Dollar Bay; Dylan Jergens, 6-0, Jr., G, Howardsville Christian; Nick Johnson, 6-4, Sr., G, New Lothrop; Jaylon Rogers, 6-0, Sr., G, Frankfort-Elberta; Joey Weber, 5-11, Sr., G, Buckley.
Fourth team: Brandon Banks, 6-0, Sr., G, Hillman; Denver Cade, 6-3, Sr., F, Buckley; Colin Dolloff, 6-1, Sr., G, Ashley; Nick Johnson, 6-4, Sr., G, New Lothrop; Kieshon Watson, 6-3, Sr., F, Muskegon Heights Academy.
Honorable mention: Britton Angell, Big Rapids Crossroads; Alec Blank, Munising; Gregory Bradley Jr., International Academy of Flint; Tanner Byard, Pellston; John Cassell, Wyoming Potter’s House; Blake Cassidy, Pellston; Michael Craig, Hillsdale Academy; Blake Dockery, Baldwin; Cole Eshuis, Climax-Scotts; Kaiden Hejl, Bear Lake; Drew Hess, Mio; Da’Jion Humphrey, Southfield Christian; Brady Hunter, Gaylord St. Mary Cathedral; Jared Jergens, Hillman; Noah Johnston, Vestaburg; Joseph Kimmer, Hale; Joe Methner, Mt. Pleasant Sacred Heart; Evan Neff, Kingston; Colten Nelson, Mt. Pleasant Sacred Heart; Andrew Prieskorn, Lansing Christian; Bennett Sinner, Tri-unity Christian; Nate Sperling, Ashley; Seth Stratton, Vestaburg; David Trombley, Marine City Cardinal Mooney; Nathan Walker, Webberville; Trevor Wregglesworth, Onaway Area.