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September 1, 2011
Wiggins easy pick for No. 1 in 2014
MORE CLASSES: 2012 Rivals150 | 2013 Rivals150
After recently putting together new Rivals150 rankings for the classes of 2012 and 2013, we turn our attention to the class of 2014.
The initial ranking of the nation's top high school sophomores goes 25 deep and is sure to see plenty of change over the years. However, the decision to rank Andrew Wiggins at the top of the class was an easy one.
Wiggins, who hails from Canada, is an athletically gifted 6-foot-7 small forward who has just begun his sophomore year at Huntington (W.V.) Prep.
"Rarely do you find a prospect who has thoroughly separated himself as the top prospect in his class, but Wiggins is exactly that prospect," said Rivals.com lead national basketball analyst Jerry Meyer. "He is a productive player with tremendous athleticism and upside. He projects as a high-scoring and complete wing player as he refines his skill set."
Originally a member of the class of 2013 where he was quite young for his class, Noah Vonleh moved back to his natural age group and checks in at No. 2 overall in the class of 2014. The 6-foot-7 forward at New Hampton (N.H.) Prep had a huge summer beginning with the Nike Elite 100 in June and ending with the Mass Rivals out in Anaheim in July.
"Vonleh has a lot of game in an imposing physique," said Meyer of the five-star swingman. "He projects as an elite combo forward."
Down in Texas, 6-foot-4 combo guard Emmanuel Mudiay is one of several highly ranked players at Arlington (Texas) Grace Prep. The Texan has great size and is a versatile performer.
"Much of Mudiay's value as a prospect is derived from his versatility," said Meyer. "He can play three positions and has a great feel for making plays off the dribble."
The honors for best big man in the class of 2014 go to Chicago (Ill.) Whitney Young's Jahlil Okafor. The stout 6-foot-9 post player is a back-to-the-basket scorer with strong hands who has elicited comparisons to guys like Kevin Love and Jared Sullinger.
"Okafor has established himself as the top big man in the class," said Meyer of the Windy City big man. "He controls a lot of space and has a promising skill set."
Rounding out the top five is another Texan, small forward Justise Winslow from Houston (Texas) St. John. An athletic driver, Winslow is followed in the rankings at No. 6 by another big time athlete in Theo Pinson of High Point (N.C.) Wesleyan Christian Academy.
The honor for highest rated true point guard on the list goes to Tyus Jones. The six-foot floor general from Apple Valley (Minn.) High checks in at No. 7 on the 2014 list.
"There are not many point guards who have as an advanced feel for the game as Jones," said Meyer. "His quickness and high skill level allow him to control a game at the point."
Rounding out the national top 10 and also earning five-star status in the class of 2014 while holding down the No. 8 through No. 10 spots are shooting guard JaQuan Lyle, power forward Cliff Alexander and forward Chris McCullough.