Syracuse Basketball: Prep power Brewster Academy to NIBC super league

Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports) /

A powerhouse prep-school team that has sent numerous of its players to Syracuse basketball over the years is heading to the country’s most prestigious high-school hoops conference beginning with the upcoming 2023-24 season.

Per a recent tweet from the prestigious National Interscholastic Basketball Conference (“NIBC”), the Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H., will become the 11th member of this absolutely loaded conference (actually, make that 10 members, as the Bishop Walsh School in Cumberland, Md., is moving on from the NIBC, it was announced on Saturday).

The NIBC features top-flight independent basketball academies and other prep-school squads. Its members play a regular season on an annual basis versus one another, and then these teams play in other top-flight high-school showcases and against other foes to round out their yearly schedules.

In the recently held 2023 GEICO Nationals, five of the eight groups invited were NIBC members, including several teams whose rosters include Syracuse basketball four-star recruiting targets.

This is a significant move for the Brewster Academy, which beginning in 2023-24 will face even tougher competition than it already does, while some of its NIBC games I assume will be broadcast on various ESPN channels.

Syracuse basketball has connections to Brewster Academy and the NIBC.

"In the NIBC’s recent tweet, Brewster Academy head coach Jason Smith said, “We are extremely excited to be joining the premier high school basketball league in the nation, the NIBC. We are very grateful for this opportunity and humbled to be included with this selective group of elite programs and institutions!”"

The Brewster Academy has been competing in the NEPSAC, which is short for the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council. Smith’s Twitter account says that the Brewster Academy is a seven-time national prep champion.

Alumnus of the Brewster Academy who went on to play for the Orange include Buddy Boeheim, C.J. Fair, Chris McCullough, Kadary Richmond and Taurean Thompson, among others.

Several high-school seniors who held scholarship offers from Syracuse basketball competed for the Brewster Academy either this year or in other recent seasons. They include 2023 five-star guard/wing Matas Buzelis (G League Ignite), 2023 four-star big man Joseph Estrella (Tennessee) and 2023 four-star wing Reid Ducharme (Xavier).

The NIBC got underway in the 2021-22 stanza with eight teams. Then, for the 2022-23 term, it added two more members, the AZ Compass Prep School in Chandler, Ariz., and Long Island Lutheran High School in Brookville, N.Y.

In 2021-22, two future ‘Cuse players competed in the NIBC. Freshman point guard Judah Mintz, who is testing the 2023 NBA Draft waters while maintaining his college eligibility, was a star for the Oak Hill Academy from Mouth of Wilson, Va.

Chris Bell, a freshman small forward for the Orange who has said he’s returning to Syracuse basketball for his sophomore campaign, played for the Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant, Utah.

Looking ahead to 2023-24, at least two ‘Cuse recruits are expected to play in the NIBC. Kiyan Anthony, a 2025 four-star shooting guard offered by the Orange last November, will be a junior at Long Island Lutheran.

This past February, Syracuse basketball coaches offered 2024 four-star point guard Curtis Givens III. In 2023-24, he will be a senior at the juggernaut Montverde Academy in Montverde, Fla.

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