The 2020-21 edition of the 352-page Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook is now available for purchase. Order your WBY by visiting www.wbby.com.
Here is a sneak preview of the top 10 teams in the preseason poll of Division 1 schools included in the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook …
1. Brookfield Central
Coach: Dan Wandrey, 6th year
Top Players: David Joplin (6-7, Sr., 23.2 ppg, 10.8 rpg, 3.4 apg), Ben Nau (6-2, Sr., 12.5 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 5.2 apg), Andrew Rohde (6-5, Jr., 8.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 3.5 apg), Cam Devine (6-3, Sr., 2.2 ppg), Hayden Nelson (6-4, Sr.), Myles Coleman (6-0, Sr.), Jack Ockwood (5-10, Sr.), Ben Peterson (5-10, Sr.), Michael Sobota (6-5, Sr.), Clyde Tinnen (6-0, Sr.), Drew Edmond (5-10, Soph.), Logan Grunwald (6-0, Jr.), Jack Daugherty (6-6, Frosh.).
2019-20 Records: 24-1, 16-0 in Greater Metro Conference
Outlook: Texas recruit David Joplin and University of St. Thomas recruit Ben Nau headline a very strong and deep senior class at Brookfield Central, which navigated its way to an unbeaten record in the ultra-tough Greater Metro Conference last winter. Joplin is one of the state's most consistent and productive performers, and can hurt opponents with his offensive versatility, his dominance on the glass and his unselfishness. Nau competes with an extremely high basketball IQ and can knock down shots from well outside the three-point arc. Junior wing Andrew Rohde, himself a potential scholarship player, joined Joplin and Nau in the Lancers' starting lineup and gives coach Dan Wandrey a potential defensive stopper due to his length, size and mobility. Seniors Cam Devine, Hayden Nelson and Myles Coleman figure to contend for significant playing time along with newcomers such as Drew Edmond, Logan Grunwald and freshman Jack Daugherty, the son of former University of Wisconsin forward Sean Daugherty.
Coach’s Comments: "The return of Joplin and Nau, a strong senior class, tradition, a winning attitude, size, offensive explosiveness and experience are strengths. Team defense, consistency and depth are concerns."
Patrick Baldwin Jr.
2. Sussex Hamilton
Coach: Andy Cerroni, 20th year
Top Players: Patrick Baldwin Jr. (6-9, Sr., 24.3 ppg, 10.8 rpg), Tanner Resch (6-1, Sr., 14.1 ppg, 3.8 apg), Nolan Reider (6-8, Sr., 4.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg), Luther Smith Jr. (6-0, Soph., 3.1 ppg), Ian Dolney (6-1, Jr.), Ryan Spencer (6-1, Sr.), Alex Eichmann (6-1, Soph.), Colton Martell (6-1, Sr.), Cole Hoffman (6-3, Sr.), Drew Larson (6-0, Sr.), Brady Batzko (6-2, Sr.), Peyton Newman (6-1, Jr.).
2019-20 Records: 22-3, 14-2 in Greater Metro Conference
Outlook: Two of Sussex Hamilton's losses a year ago came at the hands of Brookfield Central in Greater Metro Conference play. A third meeting between the two rivals would have taken place in a WIAA Division 1 sectional final, but COVID-19 wiped out that contest and the state tournament. Coach Andy Cerroni's club is back for another shot at winning the league and state titles with the nation's No. 1 prospect leading the way in senior wing Patrick Baldwin Jr. The son of UW-Milwaukee coach Patrick Baldwin Sr., Baldwin Jr. can do everything on the court and at 6-foot-9 he is more than eager to take his team to a banner season. Aggressive, quick and explosive wing guard Tanner Resch also returns to the starting rotation for the Chargers while senior Nolan Reider and sophomore Luther Smith Jr., were top reserves who figure to move into the starting rotation. Size is a definite strength with Baldwin Jr. and the 6-foot-8 Reider protecting the rim and potentially preventing second-chance opportunities for opponents.
Coach’s Comments: "The return of Patrick, Tanner, Nolan and Luther is a big strength for us. All four played huge roles on the big stage last year so they will lead us. Our younger players are hungry to get on the floor and put the work in. We have a strong culture and a very good core group of kids who work hard and hold each other accountable."
Coach: Lucky Wurtz, 13th year
Top Players: Jackson Paveletzke (6-2, Jr., 12 ppg, 3 rpg), Grant Asman (6-10, Sr., 8 ppg, 5 rpg), Jackson Dudek (6-6, Sr.), Tommy Ellison (6-3, Sr.), Spencer Johnson (6-2, Sr.), Brett Peronne (6-4, Sr.), Cal McGinnis (5-11, Sr.), Patrick McGinnis (6-2, Sr.), Jack Myers (6-5, Sr.), Owen Pawlikowski (6-3, Jr.), Cam Wnek (6-2, Jr.), Jackson Wildes (6-1, Jr.), Seth Miron (6-3, Soph.).
2019-20 Records: 22-3, 17-1 in Fox Valley Association
Outlook: Even after losing three starters and nine seniors off a team that went 22-3, Kimberly enters the season as the overwhelming choice to win the 10-team Fox Valley Association. Coach Lucky Wurtz has the best frontline in the league with the return of Grant Asman and Jackson Dudek, and he also has the luxury of playing several outstanding guards, led by returning starter Jackson Paveletzke. Paveletzke might be the most important player in the Papermakers' lineup as the second-team all-league performer does an excellent job of playing with a steady pace while also making shots and setting up his talented teammates. Asman, who recently committed to NCAA Division I Lipscomb, had a strong summer and showed the ability to make deep shots while also scoring off the dribble. Those are difficult traits to stop since Asman accomplishes those tasks with a 6-foot-10 frame. Dudek also played well over the summer and has committed to NCAA Division II Northern Michigan. Look for junior Owen Pawlikowski, an extremely athletic wing, to play a big role for the Papermakers as well.
Coach’s Comments: "Depth, height, athleticism, shooting, tradition and defense are strengths. We did lose a lot of very good seniors and a ton of points and experience."
4. Milwaukee Rufus King
Coach: Doug Lewis, 4th year
Top Players: Mohamed Niang (6-3, Sr., 7.2 ppg), Quinton Murrell (6-3, Sr., 18.0 ppg), Jayquan Hickles (6-7, Jr., 5.8 ppg), Peyton Parrish (5-9, Sr., 4.0 ppg), Chris Morris (6-0, Sr.), Elijah Lewis (5-10, Sr.), Nick Krueger (6-0, Sr.), Owen Nelson (6-1, Sr.), Mauryon Turner (6-2, Soph.).
2019-20 Records: 22-1, 12-0 in Milwaukee City Conference
Outlook: Senior Quinton Murrell is the returning Player of the Year in the Milwaukee City Conference, and his offensive and defensive versatility and productivity definitely will be key assets for the Generals and coach Doug Lewis once again in 2020-21. Murrell led King to a 22-1 record by averaging a team-high 18.0 points per game as a junior. Murrell is one of four key returning performers for King, which lost to Brookfield East in a WIAA Division 1 regional final last season, the lone loss of the campaign for the Generals. Seniors Peyton Parrish and Mohamed Niang along with ever-improving junior forward Jayquan Hickles join Murrell as top returning players for the Generals. Look for sophomore Mauryon Turner to potentially make an impact as well. The Generals suffered a tough loss over the summer when returning senior guard Rickey Bradley Jr. opted to attend an out-of-state prep school. He averaged 11.7 ppg as a junior at King.
5. Racine Case
Coach: Jake Berce, 4th year
Top Players: JaKobe Thompson (6-1, Sr., 19.3 ppg, 4.4 rpg), Terryon Brumby (6-0, Jr., 14.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg), Amari Jedkins (6-7, Jr., 8.6 ppg, 7.2 rpg), JaQuori Cottingham (5-11, Sr.), Yontae Bell (6-0, Sr.), Chase Werner (6-2, Sr.).
2019-20 Records: 21-4, 12-2 in Southeast Conference
Outlook: Behind the strong play of several players who have graduated along with returning standouts JaKobe Thompson, Terryon Brumby and Amari Jedkins, Racine Case won the title in the Southeast Conference by three games over second-place Kenosha Bradford. With the strong nucleus of Thompson, Brumby and Jedkins all back, Case is once again the team to beat in the eight-team circuit. Thompson is a two-time first-team all-league performer and the returning Player of the Year in the Southeast. He enters his senior season with 1,354 points and is considered one of the state's top class of 2021 prospects. Brumby and Jedkins also have drawn attention from college recruiters thanks to their skill, size, length and productivity. Seniors JaQuori Cottingham, Yontae Bell and Chase Werner will contend for starting roles created by the graduation loss of Jay Jay Rankins-James and Nick Figiasco.
Coach's Comments: "Quickness and scoring punch are strengths while depth and size are both concerns."
Coach: Craig Haase, 21st year
Top Players: Sam Hytinen (6-5, Sr., 12.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg), Mac Wrecke (6-4, Soph., 11.6 ppg, 3.4 rpg), Blake Ewer (6-6, Sr., 4.4 ppg, 6.5 rpg), Jake Davis (6-3, Sr., 2.6 ppg), Zach Graham (6-4, Sr.), Jackson Raasch (6-1, Jr., 2.9 ppg), Jordan Leoni (6-4, Sr.), Tyler Dongara (5-10, Sr.), Sam Held (6-0, Sr.), Sam Pulvermacher (5-11, Sr.), Jimmy Stefl (6-5, Sr.), Ryan Leonard (6-1, Jr.), Caiden Anderson (6-2, Jr.), Austin Villarreal (6-0, Soph.), Owen Marshall (6-0, Soph.), Bennett Basich (6-2, Frosh.).
2019-20 Records: 23-2, 16-0 in Classic Eight Conference
Outlook: Replacing the nightly productivity and overall clutch play of Carter Gilmore, now playing at the University of Wisconsin, will not be possible for Arrowhead. Gilmore averaged 26.8 points and 11.3 rebounds while leading the Warhawks to a 23-2 record. Still, coach Craig Haase has some returning talent and a strong senior class, assets that should help Arrowhead remain the team to beat in the Classic Eight Conference. Left-handed senior wing Sam Hytinen is the top returning player and a two-year performer for the Warhawks. He finished second on the squad in both scoring and rebounding as a junior. Sophomore Mac Wrecke is one of the state's top class of 2023 prospects due to his physical strength, athleticism and skill. Look for Wrecke to emerge as one of the premier scorers in the Classic Eight. Seniors Blake Ewer, Jake Davis, Zach Graham, Tyler Dongara, Sam Held, Sam Pulvermacher and Jimm Stefl, along with juniors Ryan Leonard and Jackson Raasch, also figure to play key roles for Arrowhead.
Coach's Comments: "Senior leadership, senior depth, length and athleticism are strengths. Ball handling and defending quickness are concerns."
Coach: Lee Rabas, 6th year
Top Players: Jake Dietz (6-3, Sr., 12.8 ppg, 6.4 rpg), Carter Thomas (6-5, Jr., 11.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg), Charlie Wolfgram (6-1, Sr., 5.1 ppg, 2.1 rpg), Ryan Janssen (6-0, Sr.), Chevalier Emery Jr. (6-1, Jr., 6.1 ppg), Cal Klesmit (6-2, Soph., 2.5 ppg), Adam Koellermeier (6-1, Sr.), Ethan Noe (6-5, Sr.), Brady Frost (6-7, Sr.), JJ Paider (6-7, Jr.), Eli Schmidt (6-4, Jr.), Gradin Taschner (6-3, Jr.), Payton Kramer (5-11, Jr.).
2019-20 Records: 23-2, 16-2 in Fox Valley Association
Outlook: Few teams in Wisconsin can match the Rockets' depth, versatility and overall size. Some teams have better individual players, taller post players and bigger scorers, but the Rockets' talent across the board is impressive. Seniors Jake Dietz and Charlie Wolfgram are returning starters along with junior Carter Thomas. All three can play different positions, score in different ways and guard at a high level. The Rockets lost Wofford recruit Max Klesmit to graduation, but Thomas has the look of a potential first-team all-league performer thanks to his size and versatility. Dietz, too, could emerge as one of the league's best as he can get on a roll offensively from outside the three-point arc and with pull-up jump shots off aggressive moves toward the hoop. Juniors Chevalier Emery Jr. and JJ Paider along with sophomore Cal Klesmit also figure to play prominent roles for Neenah.
Coach’s Comments: "Perimeter play, depth and the ability to play big or small are strengths. Our concerns include the continued virus nonsense, rebounding, defense, toughness, team chemistry and leadership.
8. Brookfield East
Coach: Joe Rux, 5th year
Top Players: Hayden Doyle (6-1, Sr., 21 ppg, 3.5 rpg), Luke Pluemer (5-10, Sr., 6 ppg, 2 rpg), Bryce Thomas (6-1, Sr.), JJ Hemmer (6-2, Sr.), Logan LeTourneau (6-3, Sr.), Jackson Linsmeier (5-10, Sr.), Dan Gherzegher (6-2, Jr.), Matt Schmainda (6-0, Soph.), Michael Francken (6-2, Jr.), Cade Honkamp (6-1, Jr.), Nate Armitage (6-0, Jr.), Joe Stewart (5-11, Soph.), Nollenn Tabaska (6-4, Soph.), Tayshawn Bridges (6-2, Frosh.).
2019-20 Records: 20-5, 12-4 in Greater Metro Conference
Outlook: One of the neat things about high school basketball is the ability of coaches to minimize the strength of opponents with excellent scouting and terrific game plans. Joe Rux of Brookfiel East does that about as well as any other coach in the state. And although the Spartans' lineup is strong, it probably doesn't match-up favorably on a player-by-player basis with Greater Metro Conference rivals such as Brookfield Central and Sussex Hamilton, and maybe even Menomonee Falls and Wauwatosa East. Yet, betting against the Spartans from fairing well once again in 2020-21 is fool's gold. Senior Hayden Doyle provides great leadership, tremendous toughness and the ability to put points on the scoreboard. The NCAA Division III recruit for Washington University in St. Louis is a returning first-team all-league performer and is one of two returning starters along with senior Luke Pluemer. Freshman Tayshawn Bridges, a 6-foot-2 wing, is the state's top class of 2024 prospect and already owns NCAA Division I scholarship offers from Auburn, Florida State, Grambling State, Iowa and Maryland.
Coach’s Comments: "Strong guard play with the ability to apply pressure on opponents on both ends of the floor will be assets for our team. We will be relatively inexperienced."
9. Madison Memorial
Coach: Steve Collins, 22nd year
Top Players: Kyle Yu (6-3, Sr., 13.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg), JR Mitchell (5-9, Sr., 7.1 ppg, 2.1 rpg), Cooper Lundal (6-5, Sr.), Michael DeYoung (6-1, Sr.), Amaree Goodall (6-3, Sr.), Drew Ellingson (6-1, Sr.), Ethan Ferry (5-10, Sr.), Tommy Barrett (6-0, Sr.), Braylen Blue (6-3, Soph.).
2019-20 Records: 18-6, 13-5 in Big Eight Conference
Outlook: The Big Eight Conference has no dominant team, at least in the view of the league's 10 coaches. There are several programs that could emerge as the league's best, including traditional power Madison Memorial. Coach Steve Collins boasts a pair of returning starters in seniors Kyle Yu and JR Mitchell. Both are proven performers in the league and players capable of scoring and defending at a high level. Senior other seniors, led by 6-foot-5 forward Michael DeYoung, also could play important roles for the Spartans. Sophomore Braylen Blue, who owns several NCAA Division I scholarship offers, transferred to Memorial from Sun Prairie and could emerge as the Spartans' starting point guard. He possesses very good length and has a very good feel for the game.
Coach’s Comments: "Stability, court vision, ball handling and hustle are strong points. Defense and rebounding are among our concerns."
Coach: Dana MacKenzie, 18th year
Top Players: Caden Nelson (6-3, Sr., 10.4 ppg, 3.1 rpg), Andrew Keller (6-6, Jr., 12.1 ppg, 4.6 rpg), Jaxon Zibell (6-0, Sr., 9.5 ppg), Jack Dotzler (6-6, Jr., 4.8 ppg, 4.6 rpg), Casey Fischer (6-0, Sr., 4.9 ppg), Aidan Driscoll (6-3, Jr., 3.4 ppg), Drew Regnier (6-2, Soph.), Randy Vojtisek (6-2, Sr.), Connor Keenan (6-4, Sr.), Joey Fuhremann (6-7, Jr.).
2019-20 Records: 19-6, 12-2 in Badger North Conference
Outlook: The Warriors always compete with plenty mental and physical toughness, not to mention a high collective basketball IQ. That figures to be the case once again in 2020-21 as coach Dana MacKenzie welcomes back four starters from a club that won 19 games. The regulars returning include senior guards Caden Nelson and Jaxon Zibell along with junior forwards Andrew Keller and Jack Dotzler. All four are capable scorers, solid defenders and proven performers for the Warriors. Nelson earned first-team all-league recognition while Zibell and Keller were second-team honorees. Senior Casey Fischer, junior Aidan Driscoll and sophomore Drew Regnier all saw substantial playing time last winter and figure to be key performers once again.
Coach’s Comments: "Experience, team chemistry and hunger for success are strengths. How we respond to a long COVID break from playing together is our biggest concern."
OTHERS TO WATCH: Bay Port, De Pere, Franklin, Hudson, Kettle Moraine, Madison East, Madison La Follette, Menomonee Falls, Muskego, Oak Creek, Stevens Point, Wauwatosa East, West Allis Central, Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln.