April 28, 2006

Post-season Minnesota top 30

This sunday Mr. Basketball of Minnesota will be announced and the finalists are Gopher commit Bryce Webster, Isaiah Dahlman, Cory Johnson, Cameron Rundles and Ryan Wittman. Before that award is handed out, now seemed like as good a time as any to go over who I think are top 30 players/prospects in the state of Minnesota after the 2005-06 season. The future of Minnesota hoops is now in full swing playing AAU basketball but this is just one last chance to look back at the best players of a 2006 class that has 13 division one commits and possibly eight more who will either step onto a D-1 campus this fall or in a few years after either junior college or prep school.

NUMBER 1 - Isaiah Dahlman of Braham

Isaiah had a storied career and finished as the all-time leading scorer in the history of Minnesota high school basketball. He led his team to three state titles and averaged 34.3 points per game this season with six boards, five assists and three steals. Next year Michigan State is getting a player who will be able to push the ball up the floor for them at times and a guy who can penetrate to the basket and hit pull-ups, acrobatic shots in the lane or find a teammate with his great court vision.

NUMBER 2 - Cory Johnson of Duluth East

No player in Minnesota high school basketball is more ready to step into a major college program and contribute like Cory. He's going to give the Cyclones a player who will rebound and play defense with intensity. He's strong, reasonably quick and Cory will do whatever is asked of him as soon as he steps on campus. He led East to the state title game this year averaging 27 points, nine rebounds and four assists. He shot over 50 percent in his four years on varsity and is the 13th player in Minnesota high school history to score over 2,000 points and grab over 1,000 rebounds in a career.

NUMBER 3 - Bryce Webster of St. Thomas

Bryce led St. Thomas to the state semi-finals before they lost to eventual state champion DeLaSalle. He averaged 21.5 points and 10.9 rebounds per game this year and signed to play at the University of Minnesota. Bryce is a player with a solid touch on his jumper and he has developed good footwork over the past four years going from a raw talent to a polished high school star. Dan Monson will have a very solid player in Webster who will take up space in the middle defensively and offensively he should give the Gophers a reliable touch in the paint. Bryce showed an increased intensity as the year moved on, he has cut weight while toning his body and he is a very intellectual young man on top of things.

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