A new high school hoops conference has formed, its leaders announced, and this league will include numerous recruiting connections to Syracuse basketball.
In recent days, word came out that Nike’s Elite Youth Basketball League (“EYBL”) is teaming up with the National Interscholastic Basketball Conference (“NIBC”) to form the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League Scholastic (“EYBL Scholastic”).
Per social media posts and the new league’s Web site, this super conference will feature 14 teams, consisting of some of the top independent basketball academies and prep schools around the country.
EYBL Scholastic is commencing operations during the 2023-24 season, which has recently got underway nationwide in high school basketball.
Syracuse basketball recruits will play in a new super conference.
Here are the 14 teams in the EYBL Scholastic:
•AZ Compass Prep School in Chandler, Ariz.
•Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H.
•Canyon International Academy in Phoenix, Ariz.
•IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.
•La Lumiere School in La Porte, Ind.
•Legacy Early College in Greenville, S.C.
•Link Academy in Branson, Mo.
•Long Island Lutheran High School in Brookville, N.Y.
•Montverde Academy in Montverde, Fla.
•Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va.
•Orangeville Prep in Mono, Ontario
•Sunrise Christian Academy in Bel Aire, Kan.
•Veritas Academy in Santa Fe Springs, Calif.
•Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant, Utah
Current Orange sophomore point guard Judah Mintz spent his senior year at Oak Hill, while sophomore forward Chris Bell played as a senior at Wasatch.
Central New York product J.J. Starling, a ‘Cuse sophomore guard, competed at La Lumiere for two years, while Syracuse basketball sophomore guard/wing Chance Westry was a standout senior at AZ Compass Prep.
Numerous former Syracuse basketball players suited up at Brewster in the past, including Buddy Boeheim and C.J. Fair.
Over the last few recruiting cycles, prospects at Brewster, La Lumiere, Link Academy (which won the 2023 GEICO Nationals, by the way), Montverde and Sunrise had picked up ‘Cuse scholarship offers but headed elsewhere.
The NIBC was arguably the top high school league, with 10 members, and the new EYBL Scholastic has formed with those schools, along with Canyon International, Link, Orangeville and Veritas.
Imahri Wooten, a 2026 four-star guard, is a sophomore at AZ Compass Prep. He took an unofficial visit to the Hill in October, around which time he landed an offer from the Orange.
Long Island Lutheran’s stacked 2023-24 backcourt features 2025 four-star shooting guard Kiyan Anthony and 2025 four-star point guard Nigel James, both of whom hold ‘Cuse offers.
Anthony took an official visit to Syracuse basketball in late October, while James officially visited the Orange in mid-September. Both appear to be priority targets for the ‘Cuse in the junior class.
Additionally, Syracuse basketball 2024 commit Donnie Freeman, a four-star power forward from Washington, D.C., is spending his senior term at IMG.
In recent weeks, Freeman officially signed with the Orange. He verbally committed to the ‘Cuse in May and has officially visited the program twice this year.
I expect that some EYBL Scholastic games will air on national broadcasts in the 2023-24 season, so we should have an opportunity to check out Freeman and various Syracuse basketball recruits.
By extension, many of the groups in this new super conference will be significant contenders to vie for a national championship at the 2024 GEICO Nationals that will take place next spring, high school hoops experts have told me lately.